Citing media reports, The Verge reported that Amazon pays drivers a base pay of between $18 and $25 an hour, with some of the drivers contending that tips are added to that base pay. While Amazon didn’t respond to a Los Angeles Times report, it did tell The Verge it has the right to use supplemental earnings to meet the base pay of drivers.
The attention being placed on this issue comes after NBC News reported last week that Instacart, the delivery on demand service, is facing a class action lawsuit pertaining to the way it handles the tips drivers earn. At the heart of the suit is an allegation by Sarah Lozano, an Instacart worker in Los Angeles, who said the company “intentionally and maliciously misappropriated gratuities in order to pay plaintiff’s wages, even though Instacart maintained that 100 percent of customer tips went directly to shoppers.” The lawsuit contends Instacart knows that customers think the tip will go to the shoppers on top of their base rate. Customers, the suit argues, do not think the tip goes to supplement their pay.
Under the current structure, Instacart comes up with a so-called batch payment based on the items the shopper is picking from the shelves and delivering. Shoppers receive more if the item is heavier. They also get paid for the mileage driven, and receive small bonuses at peak times. Workers are guaranteed at least $10 a job.