Rideshare accidents create a unique insurance situation. They are often more complicated than a typical car accident claim or even a case involving a bus crash or taxi collision. Texas has laws in place requiring Uber and Lyft drivers to have liability insurance if they cause an accident and you suffer injuries. Navigating the process and knowing how to file a claim, however, is rarely straightforward. An Uber and Lyft accident lawyer in Baytown can help.
At D. Miller & Associates, PLLC, we can help you recover the compensation you deserve after a rideshare accident. We can explain which insurance policy covers your accident, and help you prepare and file your claim. We will help you cut through the red tape and demand the money you need to include your accident-related expenses and losses.
Call us today at 713-850-8600 for your free case review and consultation.
Damages Available in a Baytown Rideshare Accident Claim
The damages you could collect through an Uber or Lyft accident claim vary based on your losses. Every case is different. For example, many people receive compensation to pay for emergency transportation to the hospital. This money covers their bills for an ambulance ride. However, if a friend took you to the hospital, you would not be eligible for these damages.
Some of the most common types of damages we see in these accidents include:
- Medical treatment, including the emergency department and in-hospital and doctor’s visits;
- Prescription drug costs;
- Lost wages;
- Future lost income and benefits;
- Future care costs;
- Property damage;
- Out-of-pocket expenses;
- Pain and suffering damages; and
- Wrongful death damages, if a loved one died in a fatal rideshare crash.
Often, the first question accident victims ask is, “How much is my case worth?” However, it is usually the last question we can answer. We must thoroughly investigate your accident before we can determine a fair settlement value. We need to collect documentation of every loss or expense, and then use them to calculate the value of your case.
What Makes Rideshare Accident Claims so Unique?
Rideshare as a concept is still in its relative infancy. Texas only recently passed comprehensive laws requiring Uber and Lyft drivers to have liability insurance, despite having strict laws to regulate taxis for decades. Understanding the difference in how rideshare works and how traditional taxis work is essential to understanding what makes these claims so complex.
Taxi companies employ drivers to take customers from one place to another. Rideshare companies, however, only provide an app that connects independent contractors with passengers who are willing to pay for a ride. This set up makes it difficult to hold the rideshare company liable because vicarious liability does not apply. Companies are only responsible for the actions of employees, not independent contractors.
The laws passed in Texas ensure there is a liability policy that applies no matter how a rideshare driver causes an accident. We can help you understand which policy was in effect at the time of your crash and manage the claims process for you. We can usually negotiate a fair settlement without taking these cases to court. However, it may be necessary to file a personal injury lawsuit to get the compensation you deserve.
Which Insurance Policy Applies to My Claim?
The only way to know which insurance policy was in effect at the time of your crash is to determine the status of the rideshare driver.
Not on the App
If the driver was not logged into the app when they caused the crash, their auto liability policy should cover your damages.
On the App and Looking for a Rider
If the at-fault driver was on the app and actively looking for a rider, their auto liability policy should pay for your damages. However, the rideshare company must provide a policy that acts as a contingency in this situation. This contingency liability policy will cover your damages when:
- The driver’s insurance company unfairly denies your claim;
- The driver does not carry an individual auto liability policy; or
- The driver’s policy does not cover all your damages.
This contingency coverage typically provides:
- $50,000 per individual;
- $100,000 per accident; and
- $25,000 in property damage.
En Route to a Passenger or Had a Rider in the Car
When a rideshare driver agrees to pick up a rider, and they are en route, the Uber or Lyft insurance policy that previously served as a contingency becomes the primary liability coverage. The liability coverage this policy provides jumps to $1 million.
This policy provides the primary coverage from the moment the driver pairs with a rider on the app until that rider gets out of the vehicle and the ride ends on the app. When a rideshare driver causes an accident, this coverage pays for the injuries of Uber or Lyft passengers as well as the occupants of other cars.
Driving Your Uber or Lyft Ride
If you suffered injuries in an accident that occurred while you were a passenger in an Uber or Lyft, we could help you understand who caused your crash and whose insurance company is responsible for your claim. You may need to file a claim with:
- The rideshare company’s liability policy, if your driver caused the accident;
- Another motorist’s liability insurance policy, if they caused the crash; or
- The rideshare company’s uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, if a driver without insurance caused your accident.
Talk to an Uber and Lyft Accident Lawyer in Baytown
The Baytown Uber and Lyft accident attorneys from D. Miller & Associates, PLLC, are here to help you understand the rideshare accident claims process. We will work with you to identify the liable party and file an insurance claim to recover the money you deserve.
Call us at 713-850-8600 for a free case evaluation.