Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft provide an alternative to taxis and public transportation. These companies have made it easier and more convenient for people to get rides on demand, whether they need to go to an appointment across town or a sober ride home after a night out. What happens when you’re involved in a rideshare crash? Can you recover damages for your injuries?
Filing a claim after a rideshare accident
Uber and Lyft consider their drivers independent contractors, which somewhat limits their liability as an employer: typically, employers are responsible for employee on-the-job conduct, but not an independent contractor’s conduct.
Uber and Lyft do have insurance coverage when drivers are available and waiting for ride requests, and when they’re driving or picking up passengers. If you’re injured in an accident during these periods, you may be able to file a claim against the company.
However, if the driver was “off duty,” you’ll need to file a claim against the driver’s personal insurance.
Depending on the circumstances of the accident, the rideshare company may try to use the driver’s status as an independent contractor as a defense. Alternatively, they may attempt to limit a passenger’s recovery by arguing that by using the rideshare company’s services, you agreed to resolve legal disputes through arbitration.
Because liability depends on fault, you’ll need to prove that the driver negligently caused harm. If you were a passenger and the driver was not at fault, such as when another driver causes an accident, you’ll likely need to file a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance.
Rideshare liability can be complicated, so it’s best to have a great attorney on your side. Reach out to the qualified Sarasota, FL personal injury lawyers at Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez, Murphy & Walsh today for a consultation.