You may be able to sue a rideshare driver or service in the event of an accident. However, there are certain factors to keep in mind. Even though there are terms and agreements you sign up for when you begin using these types of rideshare services, they do not prevent the driver or company from being liable in the event of an accident.
However, this process is not always straightforward. There are often multiple insurance companies involved in these cases. The driver will have their policy, and the rideshare company provides insurance coverage under some circumstances. Determining which policy is in effect when a crash occurs is the first step in seeking fair compensation. An Uber accident lawyer is a personal injury attorney who understands and handles these cases.
Who Is Liable After a Rideshare Driver Causes an Accident?
Both the driver and the company that employs them can be held responsible if their negligence results in physical injury to an Uber passenger. These lawsuits also apply to anybody affected by an accident with an Uber vehicle. For example, not only can a passenger sue if they were in the car at the time of an accident and suffered injuries in the process, but so can a driver who was hit by the rideshare car.
Many assume these cases work like a commercial vehicle crash. For example, when a tractor-trailer driver hits another vehicle, the victim can hold the trucking company responsible. The company is liable for its employees’ accidents. However, this is not necessarily true in an Uber accident case since these drivers are independent contractors.
There are also other factors to keep in mind in an commercial accident, like whether an employee was on the clock at the time of the accident in question, whether the company knew what they were doing, whether or not the driver was under the influence of illicit substances at the time of the accident, whether the driver was texting or otherwise using an electronic device while driving, and more.
An Uber accident lawyer can offer advice based on the unique facts of your case.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-537-8185
How do Insurance Claims Work After a Rideshare Accident?
Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare companies provide insurance policies that pay out under certain circumstances. This depends greatly on what was happening on the app at the time the crash occurred. In general:
- If the rideshare driver was not signed into the app, their personal auto insurance policy should cover the incident
- If the at-fault driver was signed into the app but not matched with a rider, the rideshare companies provide a contingent liability policy that pays if the injuries are beyond the driver’s insurance limit or their carrier refuses to pay
- If the Uber driver was matched with a rider or had a rider in the car, the company provides a large $1 million liability policy to cover the injuries suffered by victims
This is not always easy to sort out, especially if you have serious injuries. Having legal representation on your side to help you prepare and file a personal injury claim or lawsuit is a good idea. Your attorney will:
- Determine which policy was in effect
- Gather evidence to document your medical bills, any property damage, lost income, and other losses
- Develop a compelling case for compensation
- File your claim and/or lawsuit
- Pursue fair compensation and hold the at-fault driver accountable
Are Uber Accidents Common?
Unfortunately, Uber accidents are all too common. As a report from the University of Chicago found, Uber and similar rideshare service accidents have been steadily climbing. These services have slowly replaced taxis in some cities. An unintended side effect of this shift from taxi drivers to people who drive Uber is that the accident rate is higher. Why are rideshare accidents more common? There are a few reasons.
While this can be attributed to a variety of things, it mostly boils down to one key factor: inexperience. All it takes to get certified to become a rideshare driver is to fill out some forms, have a car in your name, and have a valid driver’s license. Suddenly, you are qualified to drive people around from dusk until dawn with nobody really watching your safety measures.
Lack of Background Checks
Some rideshare services make their drivers pass background checks; some are more extensive than others. Typically, hardened criminals who have histories of dangerous behavior will be barred from employment, but people who have been guilty of dangerous driving practices in the past will be free to work as they please.
Combine this with the long hours that some people work just to make ends meet, and it can be a recipe for disaster. An important factor to consider when thinking about an Uber driver’s aptitude to drive is how much driving can make a person tune out to their surroundings.
If you have ever driven on a road trip for hours at a time, you know how disassociated you can become from staring at the road for long periods. When Uber drivers work long shifts, constantly picking up and dropping off clients, their senses can become dull. On America’s roadways, even a second of delayed reaction time can end in tragedy.
When a rideshare driver puts you in harm’s way for any reason, somebody needs to be held responsible. Suing Uber for an accident can help protect your right to compensation for the pain and suffering you have been through.
A Law Firm Ready to Fight for You
When you call an Uber or similar rideshare service, you probably have a reasonable expectation of safety—and rightfully so. These companies owe it to their customers to keep them safe and out of harm’s way.
When that expectation of safety is betrayed, it can be difficult to know where to turn. The team of personal injury lawyers at the Morris Bart law firm is here to help, whether that involves suing a rideshare service like Uber or taking other action.
We have worked with countless clients who have suffered injuries in these types of accidents, so we have likely seen a case just like yours. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in any way at the hands of a rideshare driver, call us today to learn more about our services, which could include suing Uber for your accident.
You do not have to go through this alone. We will fight to protect your right to compensation and find out who was truly at fault in your case so you can move on with the rest of your life and make ends meet moving forward. Contact us today for a free case review with a car accident attorney.
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