Understanding Your Rights: What Victims of Ridesharing Car Accidents (Uber, Lyft) Should Know
Car accidents involving ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft have become increasingly common. While these services offer convenience and accessibility, accidents can still occur, leaving victims with physical injuries, medical bills, lost wages and emotional distress. As a victim of a ridesharing car accident, it is crucial to understand your rights and take appropriate steps to protect yourself legally and financially. In this post, we will briefly reviewed key information that victims should know, including insurance coverage, liability considerations, and the steps to take following a ridesharing accident.
One of the primary concerns for victims of ridesharing car accidents is insurance coverage. Both Uber and Lyft have insurance policies that provide coverage in the event of an accident. However, the coverage can vary depending on the circumstances. When the ridesharing driver is offline or the app is not active, their personal auto insurance policy typically applies. However, when the driver is actively transporting passengers or en route to pick them up, the ridesharing company's insurance policy comes into play. These policies usually provide higher coverage limits to protect passengers and third parties involved in the accident. It is important to note that if the at-fault driver is another motorist, their personal auto insurance policy may also be involved in the compensation process. Understanding the different insurance policies and how they interact with one another is crucial in pursuing a fair recovery.
Determining who is legally responsible for injuries in ridesharing car accidents can be complex. Liability may fall on one or more parties involved, including the ridesharing driver, another motorist, or even the ridesharing company itself. The specific circumstances of the accident will play a significant role in establishing liability. To determine liability, it is essential to gather evidence, such as police reports, eyewitness testimonies, and photographs of the accident scene. In some cases, data from the ridesharing company's app may also be useful. Consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney who specializes in ridesharing accidents can greatly assist in navigating this process.
Steps to Take After a Ridesharing Accident
Following a ridesharing accident, taking prompt and appropriate steps can protect your rights and increase your chances of receiving fair compensation. Here are some crucial actions to consider:
- Seek medical attention: Even if you believe your injuries are minor, it is crucial to seek medical evaluation as some injuries may not manifest immediately. Medical records will serve as crucial evidence to support your claim.
- Report the accident: Contact the police and ensure an accident report is filed. Inform them that you were involved in a ridesharing accident, providing details of the parties involved, vehicles, and witnesses.
- Gather evidence: Collect as much evidence as possible, including photographs of the accident scene, damage to vehicles, and injuries sustained. If possible, obtain contact information from witnesses.
- Preserve documents: Keep records of all medical bills, receipts, and any other relevant documents related to the accident, as they will be vital when calculating damages.
- Consult with an attorney: Contact an experienced personal injury attorney specializing in ridesharing accidents. They will guide you through the legal process, protect your rights, and help negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance companies involved.
Statute of Limitations
Victims of ridesharing car accidents must be aware of the statute of limitations, which is the timeframe within which legal action must be initiated. The statute of limitations varies from state to state. In New York, it is typically three years from the date of the accident, but there can be exceptions. Failing to file a claim within the specified time limit may result in the loss of your right to seek compensation.
Being involved in a car accident while using a ridesharing service can be a traumatic experience. However, understanding your rights and the necessary steps to take can significantly help in navigating the legal process and securing fair compensation. If you find yourself in this unfortunate situation, consulting with a knowledgeable attorney specializing in ridesharing accidents will provide you with the guidance and support needed to achieve a favorable outcome.
If you or a loved one has sustained a serious injury involving a ridesharing company, an experienced personal injury attorney can help. It is important to consult with a lawyer early to investigate your options, and preserve crucial evidence. For assistance with these matters, please contact us to learn more.
About the author: Peter J. Gregory is a partner with MCCM Personal Injury Lawyers in Rochester, NY. He is a trial lawyer with extensive experience resolving disputes in state and federal trial courts. As a personal injury lawyer, Gregory focuses on advising clients who have been injured or lost loved ones in accidents caused by the carelessness or recklessness of others. Please feel free to contact him directly at email@example.com or (585) 512-3506.
This publication is intended as an information source for clients, prospective clients, and colleagues and constitutes attorney advertising. The content should not be considered legal advice and readers should not act upon information in this publication without individualized professional counsel.
McConville Considine Cooman & Morin, P.C. is a full-service law firm based in Rochester, New York, providing high-quality legal services to businesses and individuals since 1979. With over a dozen attorneys and a full paralegal support staff, the firm is well-positioned to right-size services tailored to each client. We are large enough to provide expertise in a broad range of practice areas, yet small enough to devote prompt, personal attention to our clients.
We represent a diverse range of clients located throughout New York State and New England. They include individuals, numerous manufacturing and service industry businesses, local governments, and health care professionals, provider groups, facilities and associations. We also serve as local counsel to out-of-state clients and their attorneys who have litigation pending in Western New York courts. For more information, please contact us at 585.546.2500.