How can an Uber accident lawyer help to recover damages after an auto accident involving a rideshare driver?
If I’m an Uber passenger and the driver crashes, will Uber pay for my damages? What if I’m not an Uber passenger, but an Uber or Lyft driver crashes into my car at an intersection? Does it matter if they had a passenger in their vehicle, were on the way to pick up a passenger, or were on their way to eat lunch?
Below, I’ll discuss some of the issues that arise when a rideshare driver causes an accident and how an Uber accident lawyer at Axelrod and Associates can help.
Can I Sue After an Accident with an Uber Driver?
A rideshare driver is liable for any accidents that they cause just like any other driver. The question is whether Uber, Lyft, or the rideshare company’s insurance is also liable for their driver’s negligence.
The answer is… maybe. What are some situations where Uber or Lyft may be responsible for your damages after an auto accident? When:
- You are a driver or passenger who is hurt after a collision with a rideshare driver and the rideshare driver was at fault;
- You are a rideshare passenger in an Uber or Lyft, regardless of who was at fault; or
- You are a pedestrian struck by an Uber driver and the rideshare driver was at fault.
If you are an Uber or other rideshare driver and you are involved in an accident where the other driver was at fault, you may also be entitled to compensation from the other driver’s insurance, your own insurance, or the rideshare company’s insurance, depending on the circumstances.
But is Uber always responsible if its driver causes an accident? When is the rideshare company or their insurance not on the hook for damages after an Uber accident?
Is Uber Responsible when Its Drivers Cause an Accident?
Uber is responsible for its drivers’ conduct if the accident happens while the driver is “on the clock -” if the conduct was within the scope and course of employment (driving, for example), and if the Uber driver is considered an employee as opposed to an independent contractor.
Uber, Lyft, or their insurance company will do everything possible to not pay damages after an accident. They will argue that the accident was your fault and not the driver’s fault. They will argue that your damages are not as bad as you say they are. They might argue that the driver was an independent contractor and not their employee and therefore they are not required to pay…
This underscores why you should immediately consult with an Uber accident attorney after a crash in SC – the insurance company will usually attempt to deny, delay, or minimize any recovery to which you are entitled.
You need an experienced auto accident lawyer who knows the law in SC regarding Uber accidents and liability and who will not hesitate to take your claim to trial if the company refuses to pay full and fair compensation.
When Does Uber Rideshare Insurance Cover an Uber Accident?
Another car blows through a stoplight and hits you, causing serious injuries to yourself and your passengers. They are at fault, they pay for the damages, right?
It sounds simple, but who pays for the damages? The driver, Uber, or the rideshare company’s insurance? And are the insurance policy limits enough to cover the costs of your damages?
Just because a driver works for Uber or Lyft doesn’t mean that the rideshare company’s insurance will cover your damages. When are they required to pay?
What if the Uber driver is on the way to pick up a passenger but doesn’t have a passenger in their car at the time of the accident? What if the Uber driver is “on the clock” with their Uber app open and ready, waiting for a passenger? What if they drive for Uber but they are on the way to Wendy’s for lunch when they cause the accident?
An Uber accident lawyer in Myrtle Beach can help you to determine not only who was at fault, but who must pay – Uber or the driver’s own insurance policy… Depending on the facts of the case, who was at fault, and whether the rideshare driver was working for the company at the time of the accident, you may be eligible for compensation from:
- The rideshare company’s insurance;
- The driver’s own insurance policy;
- A third-party insurance policy if another vehicle was at fault in the accident;
- Your driver’s insurance policy if you were a passenger in another vehicle; or
- Your own underinsured or uninsured coverage or umbrella policy.
If you are in a wreck with an Uber vehicle and it is the Uber driver’s fault, the rideshare company’s insurance policy should cover your damages, although the policy limits may vary, when:
- The Uber driver is waiting for a ride and their app is on;
- When the Uber driver is en route to pick up a passenger, even though the passenger is not yet in their vehicle; and
- When a passenger is in the Uber vehicle.
Although there may be exceptions, ordinarily we will need to look to the Uber driver’s own policy or other sources of compensation when the Uber driver is not actively waiting for, picking up, or transporting a passenger.
Will Uber Pay My Damages if I Don’t Have an Uber Accident Lawyer?
As in every other auto accident case, the insurance company will attempt to deny, delay, and limit your coverage to protect their bottom line at your expense.
Can you attempt to settle an accident claim with the insurance company on your own with no attorney? Of course, you can. Will they pay full and fair compensation to you when they see that you have no attorney, or will they take advantage of that fact and deny or limit your claim?
If you’ve been in any auto accident, including an accident with a rideshare driver, do not make statements to their insurance company or attempt to negotiate a settlement until you have spoken to an experienced Uber accident lawyer who can evaluate your case, explain to you your rights and the law as it applies to your case, and advocate for maximum recovery for your injuries.
If you have been involved in an Uber accident in SC, your Myrtle Beach auto accident attorney on the Axelrod team will meet with you, investigate the accident, help you to determine all possible sources of recovery, and help you to recover maximum damages whenever possible through a settlement or lawsuit.