Car Accident Lawyer
Ridesharing apps are immensely popular, and they are not going away anytime soon. As a result, both drivers and passengers are finding themselves increasingly unsure about what happens when a rideshare is involved an auto accident. As a passenger, who is responsible for your injuries in an Uber/Lyft accident?
Employers are usually vicariously liable for the negligent acts of their employees, as long as the employee is acting in the scope of their employment. For example, if you are riding in a Greyhound bus that crashes off the side of the road, Greyhound Lines Inc., the employer of the driver, will be held liable for their driver’s actions.
The gray area of ridesharing insurance policies involves the fact that many companies do not consider their drivers employees, but third-party contractors. Generally, an employer is not liable for the negligent acts of third-party contractors. Uber, for example, continues to assert that their drivers are third-party contractors and not employees.
Uber and Lyft
In the U.S., the ridesharing market is dominated by Uber and Lyft. So, let’s look at their insurance policies about passengers:
Uber: When a driver is transporting a rider in their vehicle, Uber provides at least $1 million in liability coverage for damages to a third party (including the rider).
Lyft: Similarly, Lyft has a $1 million per accident liability insurance that acts as the primary coverage during the time a driver accepts a ride request until the ride has ended.
If you were injured while riding in an Uber or Lyft, regardless of who is at fault, it must be reported to Uber/Lyft by the driver. From there, you’ll expect to hear from the insurance company that covers the third-party liability. After that, the process is like any other personal injury claim. You (or the attorney you retain) will be in communication with the insurance company to reach a settlement.
It’s All Still New
The truth is, the rules and policies regarding liability for ridesharing apps are still in flux. It is expected that as the ridesharing industry continues to grow, we will see more rules regulating the insurance coverage and liability.
If you were injured as a passenger in an Uber/Lyft accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. An experienced car accident lawyer can help determine if a claim should be pursued through the company, the driver’s insurance, or both.