This is how you win an accident claim against Lyft, Uber and Other Ride-Sharing Companies
There is little doubt that commercial peer-to-peer ride-sharing, a market pioneering by Uber and Lyft, has completely transformed the way we think about journeys. The ability to have a journey sorted through the few touches of your iPhone or Android makes travelling intrinsically more accessible to the average person. Whether you are a tourist visiting a new city, a young millennial looking to go to the bar in the evening, or even an employee just wanting a ride to work, ride-sheering companies give those without their own vehicles the option to get from A to B easily.
With that said, the brutal reality is that Uber and Lyft’s theoretical upside gives rise to a huge practice downside. Unfortunately, the rise in prominence of the ride-sharing market has brought with it an increasing added danger to the roads – a University of Chicago study recently highlighted the correlation between the emergence of ride-sharing companies and road accidents. “The arrival of ride-sharing is associated with an increase of 2-3% in the number of motor vehicle fatalities and fatal accidents,” researchers at the University of Chicago claimed.
The reasoning behind the uptick in road accidents is clear.
Drivers employed by commercial ride-sharing companies are, broadly speaking, less likely to be road safe than the average driver. Added on to that the fact that many ride-sharing drivers do not possess commercial driving licenses, have not been adequately trained, work long shifts with gruelling hours, and are paid by the number of trips they complete — encouraging them to take less care and drive faster — and it is natural to see an increase in road accidents.
A new National Bureau of Economic Research (NBUR) paper, released in February 2020, found that ride-sharing have caused an unambiguous increase in fatal accidents for both pedestrians and vehicle occupants, with the situation being the worst “in cities with prior higher use of public transportation and carpools, consistent with a substitution effect.”
Each year, thousands of passengers in ride-sharing vehicles suffer injuries in accidents in California due to the actions of the drivers that hire their cars out using ride-sharing apps.
It follows, therefore, that the importance of Uber and Lyft users knowing their legal rights is crucial.
Who is Responsible if I Am Involved in an Accident Caused by a Lyft or Uber Driver?
If the ride-sharing drive, uber driver, is at fault for the accident, then the passenger is likely to have a valid claim against the individual driver and the ride-sharing company the driver is employed by. California case law indicates that that Uber drivers are legally held to be employees of the company, rather than independent contractors. This means that negligence on the part of the driver can be attributed to the company, who can be sued and held liable for the actions of their employees.
As long as the accident occurred whilst the driver was logged into the company app and the accident was caused by the driver during the regular undertaking of their job, Uber can assume full liability for the accident.
There are key insurance claims that would apply after a ride-sharing accident, too. California law distinguishes between three different periods of the journey:
Period One: this is where the accident occurs while the driver is actively logged in to the company app in the attempt to book a passenger. Here, the company is obliged to provide insurance amounting to $50,000 in the event of fatal/non-fatal injury and $200,000 in liability insurance for the driver.
Period Two: this period starts after the passenger’s request for pickup has been accepted. In this case, commercial insurance of $1,000,000 is required.
Period Three: this period kick starts after the passenger has been picked up to be taken to their destination. The ride sharing company must provide $1,000,000 of uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.
Whilst there are possible insurance claims, the best way to recover compensation that adequately covers your injuries is through pursuing a claim against the ride sharing company itself. Insurance companies often attempt to underpay and limit the amount of damages you are entitled to. Our car accident attorneys are wise to this and will not stop until equitable compensation is obtained.
Do I Need an Attorney For My Personal Injury Claim?
Absolutely! Even if Lyft, Uber, or another ride-sharing company accepts responsibility for the accident, every time the company or its driver’s insurer is required to pay for injuries suffered by a passenger in an accident, that is money out of the insurer’s pockets and this also results in increased insurance premiums to Lyft and/or its driver. Therefore, Lyft, the driver and the insurer want you to take as little money as possible in order to settle your claim for injuries suffered as a result of an accident caused by a Lyft driver.
They may attempt to get you to make a statement under oath and trick you into making statements that could compromise the value of your claim down the road or deliberately drag their feet in paying your claim in the hope that financial pressure will make you more likely to accept less money. An experienced personal injury attorney can protect your interests at every step of the process and ensure you do not settle your claim for less than it is worth.
Our attorneys significantly increase the chances of success at trial, should an insurance claim be denied or a settlement offer be consider underwhelming. We fight to hold ride-sharing companies to account.
Contact the Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys at JT Legal Group if You Have Been Injured in an Accident Involving a Lyft Driver
Were you, or someone you love, injured an accident while riding with a Lyft, Uber or other ride-sharing company’s driver? If so, contact us immediately at (888) 529-3111 or [email protected].
Our experienced personal injury lawyers have successfully pursued personal injury claims against Lyft and other ride-sharing companies and their drivers in the past. We know how to ensure that the ride-sharing company and/or its driver cannot avoid responsibility for accidents caused by their drivers. Without the help of our trusted personal injury law firm, your claim may be subject to getting pushed to the side or completely rejected. For more information, including a no cost consultation regarding your particular situation, contact our firm immediately. We are here to help you: we put you and your interests first.
Although ride-sharing companies and services like Lyft have made life much simpler for those who are either visiting a strange city or have chosen not to own a vehicle and do not want to rely on often unreliable public transportation systems, Lyft, Uber and other ride-sharing services can have a significant downside if the vehicle you are riding in is involved in an accident caused by that driver’s actions and you are injured as a result.
Despite the fact that Lyft has helped thousands of people to make money, whether as a side hustle when someone is not at their day jobs or to support themselves and their families by driving for Lyft full-time, ridesharing services also have caused increased dangers on the roads.
However, Lyft drivers, many of whom do not possess commercial driver’s licenses or any specialized training in driving at night, while tired or in unfamiliar situations, spend long stretches of time on the roads and often may drive when tired or on roads or in situations that are unfamiliar.
Indeed, the way that Lyft drivers are paid, by the number of passengers and trips they make each day, encourages them to drive too quickly in order to make more money by taking more trips and passengers in a shorter period of time. This can make the incidence of accidents while riding in a Lyft vehicle much higher than the accident rate for those who may be driving their own vehicles as they go about their daily lives. Every year, thousands of passengers in Lyft vehicles suffer injuries in accidents across the country and in California due to the actions of the drivers that hire their cars out using the ridesharing app.
Contact the Experienced Ride Share Accident Attorneys at JT Legal Group, if have been Injured in an Accident Involving a Lyft or an Uber Driver
Your free case review regarding your unique situation is available by calling:
888-529-3111 Monday-Friday, 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week.
[NOTE: Attorney Advertising]: Nothing posted on this blog is intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice. Blog postings and hosted comments are available for general educational purposes only and should not be used to assess a specific legal situation. Nor does any comment on a blog post create an attorney-client relationship. The presence of hyperlinks to other third-party websites does not imply that the firm endorses those websites, their contents, or the activities or views of their owners.