The Uberisation of Aircrew Through the Use of Bogus Self-Employment Contracts

Delphine Defossez*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Although not a new phenomenon, the rise of the ‘gig' economy has shed light on a bogus selfemployment status flourishing all over Europe and the world. The predominant image associated with ‘bogus self-employment' features riders and drivers engaged in platform work. Unfortunately, the heavy reliance on such status in the aviation industry is rarely discussed and debated, despite in-depth studies, reports, and campaigns by pilots and crew members. The first reports on this topic were actually made more than ten years ago. In addition to lowering social and working conditions, bogus self-employment is also preventing the proper functioning of the aviation market by creating unfair competitive pressure. Indeed, airlines relying on this type of contract have an unfair competitive advantage over other companies by lowering their prices or so-called ‘social dumping'. It is interesting to analyse situation of pilots and crew members in light of an array of case law which have ruled on bogus self-employed status. Indeed, a clear uberisation of aircrews exists, and the COVID-19 pandemic might have worsen this already complex situation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)665-686
Number of pages22
JournalAir and Space Law
Volume46
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2021

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