A recently proposed class action lawsuit alleges that DoorDash, a popular food-delivery platform, has been exploiting millions of consumers, struggling restaurants, and a largely immigrant workforce through its predatory fees and deceptive practices. The 81-page lawsuit accuses DoorDash of charging misleading, premium, and hidden fees while also targeting minors and engaging in unsavory business practices.
DoorDash is accused of misrepresenting delivery fees, express or priority delivery fees, and expanded range delivery fees, which the company allegedly keeps entirely for itself. According to the complaint, these fees are never passed on to delivery drivers, known as "Dashers," and have nothing to do with deliveries. Hidden marketing fees on promotional items and commission fees are also levied on consumers, unbeknownst to them.
The lawsuit further alleges that DoorDash directly targets minors through TV and social media advertising while lacking age verification procedures and parental controls. DoorDash's terms and conditions, which the complaint calls "the foundation of its illegal pricing practices," effectively strip consumers of any protections against misconduct.
The case also highlights DoorDash's history of predatory tactics toward drivers and restaurants. In 2020, DoorDash settled for $2.5 million over allegations of illegally retaining Dashers’ tips. The lawsuit claims that the platform holds onto drivers' daily pay on each order for a week while charging a "Fast Pay" fee for same-day pay release. The company allegedly targets immigrants as drivers, knowing many have no choice but to pay the Fast Pay fee.
Restaurants also face similar issues, as DoorDash holds their earnings for a week unless they pay a fee or enroll in a premium service. DoorDash's pay structure reduces restaurants' profit margins, forcing them to pass on hidden fees to customers through increased prices.
The lawsuit aims to represent everyone in the United States who has established a DoorDash account, placed an order, and paid any combination of the aforementioned fees. It may take months or even years for this case to pass through the legal process, but consumers, drivers, and restaurants alike will be watching closely for developments in this high-profile case.
Upon the initial filing of a proposed class action lawsuit, there is typically no action required for individuals to join or add their names to the case. Only when a lawsuit reaches a settlement, do those affected by the allegations—referred to as class members—need to take action. This usually involves completing and submitting a claim form either online or through the mail.
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