Injured in an Uber or Lyft?
Ridesharing services such as Uber or Lyft are used by millions of Americans every day. These vehicles are statistically just as prone to accidents as any other car. With over 140,000 car accidents a year in South Carolina, the chances are high of getting into an accident. Uber and Lyft drivers are not driving company cars, rather they operate their own vehicles and are considered independent contractors. If you are injured in an Uber or Lyft, the liability can rest with the driver, the ridesharing company, or even the manufacturer. If you were in a car accident as an Uber or Lyft passenger, obtaining compensation for your injuries and determining who is liable can be a legally complex issue.
Who is Responsible?
Just as any other car accident, there must be a determination regarding fault. This could be your Uber or Lyft driver, the other driver, or in some cases liability will rest with both drivers. Your Uber or Lyft driver may be covered by a specialty car insurance, as some car insurance companies will offer a very specific type of auto insurance policy coverage for Uber or Lyft drivers. In other cases, insurance companies will not cover any “commercial driving,” which would include your Uber or Lyft driver.
Other than a manufacturing defect, there are two parties that can be responsible for a victim of a car accident as a passenger in an Uber.
- Other Driver At-Fault. If the other driver is at-fault for the accident, the process is much simpler. As an Uber or Lyft passenger, you simply file a personal injury claim against that driver’s insurance policy for any medical bills, lost wages or other damages. This would work the same as any other car accident where the other driver is determined to be at-fault.
- Uber or Lyft Driver At-Fault. The determination of compensation and responsibility becomes a bit more challenging if the Uber or Lyft driver is at-fault for the accident. Your first option at this point would be to file a claim against the Uber or Lyft driver’s insurance policy. However, in the case that your driver’s insurance does not cover them as an Uber driver, you may be able to file a claim directly with Uber’s insurance policy. Uber’s insurance policy does cover its drivers.
Important Steps to Take after a Ridesharing Accident
If you were in a car accident as a passenger in an Uber or a Lyft, make sure to follow these steps:
- Call 911.
- Obtain a copy of the official police report.
- Obtain all witness contact information and the other driver’s contact information.
- Seek medical treatment immediately.
Let Us Help You Today
Your final step is to contact an experienced personal injury and car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Making the legal determination regarding which driver is at-fault for an accident can be complex and challenging. Before you sign a settlement agreement with any insurance company, you visit with an attorney to help you understand the compensation you deserve. Contact an experienced Columbia car accident attorney at The Stanley Law Group at 803-799-4700 and set up a consultation today.