Rideshare applications have only become more popular in recent years, with good reason. There is much to say about the convenience and ease of rideshare apps like Uber and Lyft, whether you are traveling or need a ride in your own city.
Ridesharing is usually safe, and rideshare companies should take extra steps to ensure rider safety at all times. Still, car accidents happen, and rideshare vehicles are certainly not immune.
If you’re in a ridesharing accident, you may not know the steps to file a claim. An experienced rideshare accident attorney can handle this process and get the most beneficial case result possible.
Throughout their years of existence, rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft have refined their safety procedures. Drivers and their vehicles must comply with several requirements before the ridesharing company allows them to begin working.
First, individuals wishing to drive for Uber or Lyft must meet certain criteria based on the company they’re seeking work from.
- Be at least 21 to 25 years of age, depending on the city
- Have a certain number of years of driving experience, from one to three
- Possess a valid driver’s license
- Have car insurance
- Pass a background check that looks into a person’s driving record and criminal history
Rideshare companies also have strict standards for vehicles.
Uber and Lyft vehicles must:
- Have four doors
- Be in good condition
- Not have any commercial branding
- Pass a vehicle inspection
Additionally, much older vehicles do not qualify for Uber or Lyft. Each company has its own requirements; for example, Uber vehicles cannot be over 16 years old.
While it may seem like these requirements are extensive and unnecessary, rideshare companies have these rules in place for several reasons, primarily to keep riders safe. Not only are they attempting to ensure riders are in good hands, but they’re also trying to prevent potential collisions.
Rideshare companies provide insurance to drivers while on the job. Still, among the many driver requirements, potential drivers must provide proof of valid car insurance that meets state minimums.
Under California law, all drivers must carry auto insurance at all times.
Insurance minimum liability protection includes:
- $15,000 per accident for injury or death to one person
- $30,000 per accident for injury or death to more than one person
- $5,000 per accident for damage to property
Drivers are welcome to purchase additional insurance coverage but must have the legal minimum. Failure to comply can result in legal consequences, and rideshare companies can deny employment.
Rideshare drivers must carry their own auto insurance because Uber and Lyft’s liability insurance is not always available. Instead, the rideshare company’s insurance only protects drivers under certain circumstances.
When rideshare drivers are not on duty and their app is off, rideshare insurance is not available. If they get into an accident, they need to rely on their own auto insurance for coverage.
When rideshare drivers are working but waiting for a request, Uber and Lyft’s insurance is available for protection in the event of a covered collision.
Liability insurance includes:
- $50,000: bodily injury protection per person
- $100,000: bodily injury protection per accident
- $25,000: property damage protection per accident
This insurance serves as protection for drivers and passengers.
Insurance for drivers on their way to pick up passengers or transporting passengers substantially increases.
Liability protection includes:
- $1 million in third-party liability protection
- First-party coverage, which can include things like uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage and MedPay
Additionally, rideshare insurance offers contingent comprehensive and collision coverage if the driver has comprehensive and collision on their personal car insurance policy.
Before filing a claim for compensation, your lawyer must determine the cause of your accident. Depending on the cause, they can identify who caused the collision and who you can seek compensation from.
If another driver caused your rideshare accident, you can hold them financially liable.
While filing a collision claim is the usual way to go, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit. If an uninsured or underinsured driver causes the crash or their insurance fails to settle your claim for its true value, you may need to file a claim in court.
If the rideshare driver caused your accident, you can pursue compensation from them. While Uber and Lyft provide liability insurance coverage, it doesn’t kick in unless necessary. If the driver’s insurance cannot compensate you appropriately for your damages, the rideshare company’s insurance can step in to compensate you.
Similarly, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit if the insurance company does not want to settle your claim fairly.
Pursuing compensation for your rideshare accident can be particularly challenging. Still, accident attorneys have the skills, resources, and tools to represent your best interests and get you the best possible case result.
Damages are personal to your case. The type of compensation you can receive for your claim depends on the specifics of your injuries and related losses. Generally, you can pursue compensatory damages, including economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are easier to prove, as these damages represent your tangible losses, including:
- Past and future medical expenses, including treatment, medication, and therapy
- Property damage
- Lost earnings
- Diminished earning capacity
Non-economic damages represent your intangible losses and require more evidence to calculate and prove.
These can include:
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Insurance companies regularly underestimate intangible losses, so you want a lawyer to calculate these for you.
Determining the value of your case is one of your accident attorney’s most critical tasks.
They can thoroughly review several factors that affect the value of your case, including:
- The types of injuries you suffer
- How your injuries have affected your physical and mental health
- Whether you’ve had to take time off work to recover, and if so, the total of your lost earnings
- Your total medical expenses
- Whether you’ll require medical care in the future
- Any other details relevant to your accident-related losses
A rideshare accident attorney can recover proper compensation for you. Without legal representation, you have a greater chance of settling for much less than your case is worth, and once you settle, there’s no going back.
Simply put, a car accident lawyer can give you the best possible chance of settling your case as quickly as possible while also obtaining the most favorable settlement.
Accident attorneys thoroughly understand the law and procedures associated with collision claims. They can use their knowledge and experience to your case’s benefit.
When you hire an attorney, you take the responsibility of handling your claim entirely off your hands and give it to them. Your lawyer can handle every case-related task, including calculating your damages, proving liability, and negotiating for a fair settlement. This relieves stress from your shoulders.
Finally, having an attorney on your side prevents the insurance company from using manipulative tactics to reduce your settlement. Auto insurers often prey on unrepresented accident victims. When you hire an accident lawyer, you eliminate the possibility of the insurance company ever playing tricks on you.
The benefits of hiring a car accident attorney for your rideshare collision far exceed any possible detriments. For that reason, when you suffer costly injuries in a rideshare crash, do not hesitate to consult a car accident lawyer right away.
When you need legal representation after a rideshare collision, rely on an experienced personal injury lawyer. You want the right help from a professional in these complex claims.
Contact a law firm near you today for your free consultation and discuss how an attorney can help you. You want a strong advocate for your rights and compensation.