UBER, LYFT, and Rideshare Accidents, Injuries, and Assaults
Today, we rely upon and use rideshare companies such as UBER, LYFT, UBER X, UBER POOL, etc. daily. They provide a great service, making transportation convenient, and safer in many ways by preventing drinking and driving and providing access to quick and reliable transportation.
Yet like any mode of transportation, including taxis, there are risks. Not all UBER, LYFT, or other rideshare drivers are “professional drivers” – there are no special certifications, licenses, or training that would make a rideshare driver more skilled or trustworthy than any other stranger giving you a ride. This is not to say that rideshare drivers are all bad or unqualified. It is very much a person by person, and case by case situation.
Today, virtually anyone can be an UBER, LYFT, or other rideshare driver. Just by sheer numbers, there has been an increase in traffic accidents involving rideshare companies. In addition to traffic accidents, there has been an increase in assaults by and against rideshare drivers.
Rideshare drives and the algorithms and apps they use are often designed to maximize revenue, transporting people as many people as quickly as possible. Putting profits over public safety is never acceptable.
Until recently, passengers relied upon the insurance of the private individual driver to cover injuries sustained in accidents involving UBER and the like. In 2014, California Senate Bill 2293 was signed into law by Governor Brown, requiring rideshare companies such as UBER and LYFT to carry insurance covering passengers, and the public generally for injuries sustained in accidents involving these rideshare companies.
The minimum coverages that could apply are as follows:
- If the rideshare driver is carrying a passenger in route to a destination: minimum $1,000,000 coverage for death, personal injury, or property damage caused by the rideshare driver.
- If the rideshare driver is in route to pick up a passenger: minimum $1,000,000 for bodily injury
- If the rideshare driver has turned on the mobile app waiting to accept rides: minimum $50,000 for bodily injury
These coverages are for passengers, and other members of the public, including other drivers, pedestrians, and the like who are involved in an accident with an UBER, LYFT or other rideshare company.
The law also requires uninsured and under-insured coverage to be provided by UBER, LYFT and other rideshare companies for their own drivers who are injured or killed in an accident while driving for the company, waiting to pick up a passenger, or in route to pick up a passenger if the at fault party does not maintain adequate insurance.
If you were injured by an UBER, LYFT or other rideshare company as a driver, passenger, or member of the general public, you must prove negligence and that you suffered injuries in order to recover. We have extensive experience dealing with these types of cases. Additionally, if you are an UBER, LYFT or driver for any other rideshare company and are injured in an accident while driving for the provider, we can assist you in recovering for your injuries. The law requires your rideshare company to provide uninsured and under-insured coverage for your injuries, even if the at fault party does not maintain insurance or has a low policy.
If you are involved in a collision or accident involving an UBER, LYFT, or other rideshare provider, take the immediate following steps:
- Call 911 to have police take a report. Sometimes after an accident the parties do not want police called, this is never to your benefit. You should always contact the authorities to take a report, obtain party names/identities, obtain witness statements and information, and facilitate the exchange of information such as insurance and driver’s licenses. If someone suggests not calling the police, that is usually a red flag!
- Take photographs and video of the scene, accident, and injuries
- Obtain the insurance information, name, address, telephone number, and driver’s license information of all parties involved.
- If you can, take photographs of important documents such as proof of insurance, and driver’s licenses.
- Write down names, phone numbers, and addresses of all parties and potential witnesses.
- Take SCREENSHOTS of your UBER, LYFT, or other rideshare app/receipt.
- If the UBER or LYFT app does have a feature to report an accident, you should contact an attorney to assist you in reporting the accident to UBER, LYFT, or other rideshare company.
- If you feel injured, do not attempt to “tough it out” – take an ambulance and get checked out at the ER. There may be internal injuries that should be evaluated by professionals.
- CONTACT AN ATTORNEY as soon as you are able. We provide 24/7 free consultations with an attorney, we now offer “virtual” consultations through video and Zoom.
- DO NOT SPEAK WITH INSURANCE adjusters. This means any risk manager from UBER or LYFT, and includes any insurance company for the UBER, LYFT, or other rideshare driver, and insurance companies for any other party. It is best to have a qualified and experienced attorney represent your interests. Insurance companies are interested in protecting their money, not you unfortunately.
- DO NOT accept any offers to have someone pay you money or pay you without going through insurance. This practically never works out well, and is virtually never to your benefit. These types of offers should be met with skepticism and treated as a red flag!
CONTACT AN UBER, LYFT, RIDESHARE ACCIDENT ATTORNEY NOW
If you are involved in an accident, including an accident involving UBER, LYFT, or other rideshare company, CONTACT US IMMEDIATELY.
We are aggressive, thorough, and experienced in getting justice for our clients involved in these types of accidents. We offer each individual client our personal attention – our cases are not delegated to junior attorneys or paralegals. You will be represented by a trial lawyer prepared to try your case if a favorable settlement cannot be reached.
We act fast, making sure your interests are protected from the very start and all the way through. If you do not have health insurance or have trouble getting quality medical care, we can and do assist our clients in making sure they get quality care when the unexpected occurs.
We thoroughly investigate each and every case. We hire investigators, and have access to the best accident reconstructionist experts, and other experts needed to prove your case. We are trial attorneys, not settlement attorneys. This means that we prepare the cases for trial, and are ready, willing, and able to take cases to trial if the insurance companies are not being fair – as is often the case. Because we are ready for battle, we often obtain top dollar settlements for clients because insurance companies and their hired lawyers soon learn that we don’t settle for cheap and are ready for trial.
Making sure that rideshare companies are responsible for the harm their drivers may cause is important to making the roadways safer for the public at large. Profits over public safety is never acceptable.