What to do if you’re involved in an Uber accident.
South Florida car accident cases being a common form of negligence have been reported for several years now. However, with the power of modern technology, cab companies have come up with new ideas of innovating cab service which is another thing to consider when talking about road accident. One of the new concepts is what they call ridesharing or “transportation networking companies”. Examples of these companies are Uber and Lyft.
These companies operate just like a regular taxi, except that they allow car owners to use their personal vehicles and even drive their own car as a taxi service. Riders can request the trip in advance by booking at the mobile application installed on a mobile device such as a smartphone. Upon booking, the driver receives the request and picks up the requestor from his or her location. This modern concept of getting a ride seems a lot more convenient and comfortable than the usual hailing of a cab on the street.
Sadly, even with this kind of hassle-free service, we cannot deny the fact that drivers are still humans who are prone to making mistakes and subject to possible harm. You’re lucky if you encounter a good driver who is keen in following road rules and traffic regulations. Just like any other taxi service, there are rideshare drivers who are delinquent, too. However, there have been debates of the advantages of Uber because the drivers are barely insured or carry a minimum insurance policy, so this leaves possible victims of car accident feeling helpless and without assistance.
Issues You Must Know about Transportation Networking Companies
The Florida legislature is currently studying the employer-employee relationship in transportation networking companies such as Uber. This will help determine if Uber companies must share in the responsibility of covering for any injuries and damages resulting in an accident that involves Uber vehicle. Uber has considered proposals classifying the drivers as independent contractors, so this relieves the company from any accountability for car accidents involving their drivers.
While changes are still being debated, here are important things that you as a rider should be aware of in cases of injury from an accident involving an Uber vehicle.
- Many transportation network company drivers have cameras on their dashboard.
You can always request a copy of the video and it is important that you do so because it will serve as an evidence to hasten up the case. It does not matter whether it was the driver who caused the accident or a third party or third element did.
- Your Uber driver’s insurance coverage may not include coverage of your injuries or damages done.
Many insurance policies do not include coverage of a personal vehicle when being used for commercial purposes. So as an Uber vehicle, it is being used commercially, meaning it will not be covered in some insurance policies. If you own the vehicle that you are driving and it is insured, your car insurance company may support in covering for your medical expenses. However, if you are driving for someone else’s vehicle, you need to make sure that you are insured to cover for your medical bills.
- As a passenger of a transportation network company vehicle, you may not be allowed to file a lawsuit.
- If you incurred injuries, you may not be so lucky even if the driver works for the transportation network company.
In order to operate in Florida, ridesharing companies do not maintain bodily injury policy limits. They are not required or mandated to include bodily injury coverage. So, to secure your own protection, make sure to get Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage to cover you in cases of accidents.
- Learn the differences between an independent contractor and an employee of a transportation network company.
This is another issue that you must be aware of. If the driver is an independent contractor and causes accident involving the passenger or someone else, the injured victim will not be able to file a lawsuit against the ridesharing company that hired him. However, if the driver opts to work for Uber as an employee, then the company will hold responsibility for the driver’s actions because they profit from the employee’s business actions. The company agrees to assume any potential risk of injuries caused by the driver or employee.
- Florida legislature may impose future laws pertaining to these ridesharing companies.
In the case of Uber, the company has been trying to obtain relief from the many local regulations in several municipalities in Florida. Their challenge is that these municipalities have existing taxi services already and seem resistant to the new competition from ridesharing companies like Uber. So, Uber company is having a hard time trying to gain ground in their business.
In cases of accidents involving an Uber vehicle, you need a skilled lawyer to help you out in getting through the case. There are attorneys who are adept in handling such cases and have experiences dealing with cases relating to corporate responsibility and insurance liability. You will get assistance in receiving the proper compensation for any damages and injuries incurred. These could be compensation for your medical expenses, vehicle damage, lost revenue, and even pain.
Ridesharing companies must remember to keep the same responsibility as that of taxi services and should not be given special privileges because after all, the business operation of ridesharing companies do not differ in any way with a commercial transportation service.
How can we help?
If you have been injured in an Uber, Lyft or other ride share accident you will need a law firm that will represent you and advocate for your full financial recovery through detailed, meticulous preparation for trial. If you have suffered a serious personal injury or a loved one died as a result of this type of accident, please contact our firm to discuss your case.
Other articles you might be interested in:
What To Do If You Are In An Uber Accident
Have You Been Involved In A Taxi Cab Accident?
How Do I File A Claim After A Taxi Cab Accident?
4 Steps to Take After an Uber Accident
Can You Sue Uber or Lyft for an Accident?