Rideshare companies like Uber, Lyft, and other regional companies have disrupted the way we think about automotive travel. The convenience of using a cellphone to hire a private car to take you to and from your destination makes ride sharing incredibly popular, efficient, and convenient. But does ride sharing make traveling by vehicle safer? The answer to that question cannot be answered quickly.
There is a fundamental legal problem with Uber and Lyft and insurance coverage for accidents. The rideshare companies have umbrella policies and might cover casualties up to $1,000,000.00. However, Uber and Lyft try to divert legal liability away from them to the drivers. Legal maneuvering like this compounds the difficulties injured Uber and Lyft passengers might have recovering monetary damages.
Uber and Lyft consider their drivers to be independent contractors and not employees. Defining rideshare drivers this way insulates the parent companies from legal liability, forcing the brunt of the responsibility squarely on the driver. However, many auto insurers deny coverage when an accident occurs while the driver is using the car for monetary gain.
Getting in an accident while riding in an Uber or Lyft can lead to a legal quagmire. Therefore, you must hire competent legal counsel who will fight to protect your rights as soon as you are able after the crash.
You should take steps to protect yourself. You should always wear a seatbelt in a rideshare vehicle. You must also keep track of your phone so that you have all of the necessary data stored on it. Also, getting the name of your rideshare driver, make of car, the model of car, license plate, and other identifying information is essential. Also, you should call the police and report what you know. Furthermore, you must seek medical attention if you sustained an injury in the crash.
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