What Are My Legal Options In An Uber Or Lyft Accident?
by King Law
Updated Apr 19, 2021
Rideshare companies such as Uber and Lyft have created a new and popular way to get around in every city and town in the United States. People can use an app to request a ride for a price that is often cheaper than taking a taxi.
But what happens if you’re involved in a car accident with an Uber or Lyft driver? What are your legal options to recover financial compensation for your injuries?
To further understand your legal options, here are several common scenarios of ridesharing accidents:
- An Uber or Lyft driver hit you while you were driving – New York is a “no-fault” state. This means that if you’re involved in an accident, you must initially file a claim with your own auto insurance company, rather than the at-fault party or their insurer. However, you may file a car accident claim or personal injury lawsuit against the other party if you suffered a “serious injury” (e.g. Broken bones, permanent impairment of limb or organ, significant disfigurement, 90 days of substantially full disability, and significant limitation of a body system or function).
- An Uber or Lyft driver hit you while you were biking or walking – A car accident involving a pedestrian or bicyclist is often devastating since they don’t have the same protection as motor vehicles. Since these injuries are often serious, you may file a claim directly against the at-fault driver.
- You were a passenger in an Uber or Lyft vehicle – If the rideshare driver is responsible for the accident, you may file a claim against his/her insurer. However, if your damages exceed the rideshare driver’s policy limits, Uber and Lyft offer $1.25 million in liability coverage for injury and property damage, $1.25 million in uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, and $50,000 per individual in PIP. If another driver is responsible, then you may file a claim against that person’s insurance company.
No matter what kind of situation you’re involved in, having an experienced car accident attorney on your side can help you obtain the compensation you deserve. At King Law, we have the skill and resources to handle complex accident cases.
For more information about ridesharing accidents in Rochester, contact us today at (585) 270-8882 and schedule a free consultation.
It is important to remember that, similar to any other motor vehicle on the road, a rideshare car can be implicated in a serious car accident that may result in serious or fatal injuries to people involved in the collision. There are many different scenarios involving injury victims and Uber or Lyft vehicles: you may have been a passenger in the Uber or Lyft car, you may have been the driver or occupant of another car that was struck by the rideshare driver, or you may have been ton foot or on a bicycle when you were struck by an Uber or Lyft driver.
Uber and Lyft Accidents Are Handled Similarly to Other Motor Vehicle Crash Cases in Cases Where the Injury Victim was in Another Vehicle
In general, you will most likely move forward with a claim for compensation after a rideshare accident in the same way you would if you were involved in a collision with any other driver, particularly if you were in another vehicle that was struck by the Uber or Lyft car. You will begin the claims process by filing a first-party claim through your own insurance company since New York is a no-fault state, and you will only be able to file a lawsuit against the rideshare driver if your injuries are serious enough to meet the “serious injury threshold” according to New York law.
However, if you were riding in the Uber or Lyft vehicle at the time of the crash and you were a customer, the situation can be quite different.
Whether You Were a Rideshare Customer Could Make a Difference
If you were riding in the Uber or Lyft as a paying customer at the time the rideshare driver caused an accident that resulted in your injuries, you could be eligible to obtain compensation through Uber’s company insurance policy. Uber has a $1 million insurance policy that typically becomes effective once an Uber driver has accepted a request from a paying customer. Accordingly, if you are a paying customer in the vehicle, you could be eligible to negotiate a settlement through Uber’s insurance with help from your car accident lawyer.
Given that Uber has such a large insurance policy, you will not need to worry about insurance limits.
Whether the Rideshare Driver Had a Customer at the Time of the Collision Might Change the Case
When you were not a customer in an Uber vehicle at the time of the crash and your PIP policy is not enough to cover your losses for serious injuries, you may still be eligible to get Uber to pay full compensation through its insurance as long as the Uber driver had a customer at the time of the collision. The Uber company insurance policy only kicks in when a rideshare driver has a customer—not when the rideshare driver is off duty, or even when the rideshare driver is traveling around in hopes of getting a customer. Typically, the Uber driver must have accepted a ride request (even if the driver has not yet picked up the customer) for the Uber insurance policy to come into play.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney in Rochester Today
If you were injured in a motor vehicle collision involving an Uber or Lyft driver, it is critical to seek advice from our Rochester car accident attorneys as soon as you can. Our firm can ensure that you understand your rights after a collision involving a rideshare vehicle and that you take all necessary steps to give you the best chance of obtaining fair financial compensation for your losses. Contact King Law today for more information.