Uber Has Been Slapped With a $7.6 Million Fine Today

January 14, 2016, 8:05 PM UTC
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SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 12: A sticker with the Uber logo is displayed in the window of a car on June 12, 2014 in San Francisco, California. The California Public Utilities Commission is cracking down on ride sharing companies like Lyft, Uber and Sidecar by issuing a warning that they could lose their ability to operate within the state if they are caught dropping off or picking up passengers at airports in California. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Photograph by Justin Sullivan—Getty Images

Update: The California Public Utilities Commission has voted to approve the $7.6 million fine on Uber. The company plans to pay the fine, though it will also appeal the decision.

Uber never goes down without a fight.

The California Public Utilities Commission is expected to decide if the car-hailing service should be fined $7.6 million after months of back-and-forth. If they approve the fine, Uber plans to appeal—extending its battle with the Commission that has gone on since the summer.

In July, the Commission fined Uber $7.3 million for failing to comply with reporting requirements that ensure drivers don’t discriminate against passengers when giving out rides. Uber appealed, but an administrative law judge produced a new decision on Wednesday that upped the fine to $7.6 million, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Commission will vote Thursday on the decision.

State laws require Uber to share specific data with state regulators like the number of rides accepted and denied, the number of requests for wheelchair-accessible rides, the zip codes of pick-ups, miles traveled and amount paid, according to the San Francisco Examiner. Uber eventually provided some of the information to California, and claims it has handed over all of the requested data.

“While we are disappointed by the decision, we look forward to making our case to the California Court of Appeals,” an Uber spokesperson said in a statement to Fortune. “In the meantime, we will pay the fine and continue to work in good faith with the Commission.”

Uber has been widely criticized by disability rights advocates. They say that the service is trying to dodge the Americans with Disabilities Act, which requires transportation companies to accommodate those with disabilities, such as transporting wheelchair users if the wheelchair can fit in the vehicle. A rash of suits by disabled Uber users claim that drivers have refused to give rides to people in wheelchairs, locked service dogs in trunks, and sped away from users standing next to their service dogs. Just this week, an Uber driver in New York City reportedly refused a ride to a woman in labor.

If Uber failed to pay it within 30 days, the service would be suspended in California. But Uber says it will pay the fine, which could be little issue given it was valued at $62.5 billion after its most recent investment round.


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