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HOME  > Past issues  > 2013 September 18 - 24  > Taxi drivers’ waiting time for customers counts as ‘working hours’: court
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2013 September 18 - 24 [LABOR]

Taxi drivers’ waiting time for customers counts as ‘working hours’: court

September 23, 2013
The Fukuoka District Court on September 19 ruled in favor of a former taxi driver who demanded that his employer recognize his “waiting time” for customers as working hours and pay him unpaid wages for the hours.

The court decision stated that the time in which the taxi driver is waiting for a fare should be considered to be working hours, ordering the company to pay the worker a total of 1.7 million yen, including unpaid wages and a penalty payment.

According to the judgment, Gojikkawa Taxi in Fukuoka City unilaterally told its employees that if they wait for a customer for more than five minutes out of the head office’s garage, the period of time will be regarded as a “break”. The plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the firm seeking the payment for his “waiting hours” in a cab during his service period from April 2009 through October 2010.

Uchida Daisuke, the secretary of the Fukuoka Prefectural Branch of the All-Japan Federation of Automobile Transport Workers’ Unions, said, “This victory will urge the taxi industry to reconsider the calculation of wages taxi drivers receive.”

Past related article:
> Taxi drivers win overtime pay [April 30, 2013]
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