|I'm currently a driver at Universal Taxi, and I'm in the process of my final seven days. It is six days before Christmas, and I will finally be relieved of this wretched company in a few more days. I answered an ad on Craigslist a few weeks ago as Universal Taxi was advertising for drivers wanted. The ad said that you could make $600-700 a week.|
Anybody who goes into apply for a position with Universal Taxi is interviewed immediately by a "hiring manager". In my case, I interviewed with owner Gordon Simic, who showed me on his calculator that I would likely bring in $250 a day of which $78 would go to my lease and approximately $50 would be attributed to gasoline. The rest of the $250, which would be roughly $120, would be mine to keep. You work six days a week, and that is approximately $720 per week.
He said it would take about 12 hours to make this money. In reality, I never had one day where I brought in $250, whether I worked 8 hours, 10, 12 or even 16. In fact, this past Monday, I worked 12 hours and brought in $138. My expenses of lease/gas/food were $136 which means I made exactly $2 in a 12-hour day.
I worked 7 hours last Sunday and brought in $64. My expenses were $115 which means I LOST $61 after 7 hours of work. All this place is concerned about is collecting your $78 at the end of the night.
Seeing that I wasn't making any money, I pursued new employment. Once I received a new job, I attempted to call Mr. Simic to tell him that I had issues with the business, and that I wanted to sign for my last seven days. He never called me back. I left him three voicemails. I finally had to go through a man named Rick, who acts like he's an authority figure with the company but insists that he actually has no authority.
Despite my new employment, and the fact that I wasn't able to work the final few days of my final seven, they would not release me from my "contract" early. They've also never given me a copy of this contract that I signed based on the fact that I was told I would likely be making $700 per week.
They also said since I was late paying the lease twice in a week, that my free lease day which is Sunday would no longer be allowed to me, and that I would have to work Sunday to pay another $78 lease. They called me at 5 p.m. on Sunday to notify me of this, giving me little to no time to make this lease.
I strongly recommend that nobody work for this company. The ONLY way that they make money is through ripping off their drivers by putting them in unsafe vehicles.My speedometer is 7-10 mph slower than my actual speed.My car battery died on my very first day. Seven days later, my heater stopped working in nearly below zero weather.
When I brought my car back to the office to get the heater fixed, they gave me a vehicle with only one working headlight. When that vehicle would come to a stop, the "working" headlight, the heater and the radio would all shut off. The next day, the entire car would shut down at every red light on my way back to the office to retrieve my original car.
I also received a ticket for the missing headlight later in the night, and the company has yet to make arrangements for me to get to the police department with that vehicle to get the ticket waived.
I have only worked with this company for 16 days, and I have made this laundry list of complaints. I can only imagine what some of the veteran drivers have had to go through. My sleeping habits, exercise habits and eating habits have been strongly affected by the long, driving hours which is extremely unhealthy, not to mention, the stress that has been involved with having to pay this unruly lease every day.
After 16 days, I only have $88 cash in my pocket. By the end of my "contract" on Wednesday, I will most likely have no cash in my pocket which is the same as the way I started with the company. This was a severe waste of time with a company that is clearly consumed by a greedy owner. I urge anybody who reads this to NOT work for this company. It will only cause you grief, and you will not make close to the money that you were told about making.
Also, if anybody reads this and can recommend to me any legal counsel, I would certainly appreciate it. I would really like to see this company not be able to get away with these horrible business practices.