Attorney General James Warns Law Firm to Immediately Stop Trying to Profit Off of Uber and Lyft Drivers

New York City Law Firm Held & Hines Is Attempting to Get Uber and Lyft Drivers to Pay to Receive Restitution Won by AG James

NEW YORK – New York Attorney General Letitia James today sent a cease-and-desist letter to New York City-based law firm Held & Hines LLP (Held & Hines), warning the firm to immediately stop its attempts to get Uber and Lyft drivers to pay a fee for their settlement funds secured by the Office of the Attorney General (OAG). Held & Hines has been sharing deceptive posts on social media and in rideshare driver chat groups representing that the firm will help drivers claim their share of the settlement funds for a 15 percent fee to be taken out of the amount due to each individual driver. In reality, the process to receive settlement funds is simple and does not require legal representation. Drivers will be able to start submitting claims to receive settlement funds on March 1, 2024.

In the cease-and-desist letter sent to Held & Hines, Attorney General James ordered the firm to immediately stop soliciting Uber and Lyft drivers in connection with the OAG settlements and disable the website it created for this unnecessary service. Held & Hines must also disclose any executed retainers with drivers to OAG and ensure those agreements are voided. 

“Asking hardworking drivers — many of whom are immigrants and people of color — to pay a fee for their rightfully earned wages is unacceptable,” said Attorney General James. “Held & Hines is trying to get rideshare drivers to pay for an unnecessary service, but we will not allow them to get away with it. Uber and Lyft drivers should only trust settlement information from my office, settlement administrator Rust Consulting, and the New York Taxi Workers Alliance. I encourage anyone with knowledge of others attempting to charge drivers for their settlement payments to reach out to my office.”

In various posts and messages, Held & Hines encourages drivers to pay the firm in order to get their funds. Held & Hines’ actions have caused considerable confusion and distrust among the driver community and could result in drivers giving up a significant portion of the settlement funds to which they are entitled. These posts are deceptive and misleading, in violation of laws designed to protect New Yorkers from fraudulent business practices such as false advertising. As drivers do not need legal representation to receive their settlement funds, OAG also asserts that the firm’s actions may violate the New York Rules of Professional Conduct, which prohibit lawyers from charging or collecting excessive fees for services. 

held & hines

In November 2023, Attorney General James announced two landmark settlements with rideshare companies Uber and Lyft. The settlements will return $328 million in back pay to drivers and institute a minimum driver “earnings floor,” paid sick leave, proper hiring and earnings notices, and other improvements in drivers’ working conditions. More than 100,000 rideshare drivers throughout New York stand to receive settlement funds under these historic settlements. Drivers will be able to start submitting claims to receive settlement funds on March 1, 2024. Rust Consulting, Inc. (Rust) is the official settlement administrator, and will be sending notices to eligible drivers on March 1, 2024. Drivers must file claims by May 30, 2024. Payments will be made by check, Venmo, or Paypal and sent out within 30 days of filing.

The OAG warns drivers to beware of anyone who offers to help file a claim for the Uber and Lyft settlements. Instead, drivers can contact Rust or NYTWA for assistance and more information.

  1. Rust (Uber): 1-800-625-2332 | |  
  2. Rust (Lyft): 1-800-433-5314 | |
  3. NYTWA: 718-706-9892 |

The OAG thanks NYTWA for bringing this matter to the Labor Bureau and for their ongoing partnership in defending the rights of New York rideshare drivers.

This matter was handled by Labor Bureau Chief Karen Cacace, Deputy Bureau Chief Young Lee, Civil Enforcement Section Chief Fiona Kaye, Assistant Attorneys General Lawrence Reina, Mary Hughes, Jessica Agarwal, Eric Eingold, Erika Vera Livas, and Attorney General Fellow Abigail Ramos. The Labor Bureau is a part of the Division for Social Justice, which is led by Chief Deputy Attorney General Meghan Faux and overseen by First Deputy Attorney General Jennifer Levy.