No one wants to be involved with an Uber accident but if you find your self in an accident you should consult with an Atlanta Uber accident lawyer. If you have been hurt or injured in an Uber accident contact one of our trusted Atlanta personal injury attorneys.
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Potential Issues with Ridesharing Companies
With the inception of companies like Lyft and Uber, many people have actually found an affordable and convenient way to travel. Nonetheless, there are a few inherent weaknesses in the business model of ridesharing companies, which makes the vehicle much more prone to accidents, placing the passengers at more risk of being injured or hurt. Some of these issues include:
Lack of proper driver screening and training:
There has been a great controversy with regard to the poor driving screening process usually used by ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft. As mentioned earlier, just about anybody can be an Uber driver so long as they have a valid driving license and a good enough vehicle to be on the road. There are really no driving skills tests conducted by Lyft or Uber to establish whether a given driver would be a good fit or a proper candidate to provide the ridesharing service to the public.
How do you know whether the driver had a criminal record, or has a drinking and driving habit? There are lots of risks involved, some of which could end up injuring the uber driver and the passenger. In case you were injured in an Uber-related accident, you should speak to a Lyft and Uber accident lawyer as soon as possible.
Lack of proper regulations:
Uber made it absolutely clear that they don’t operate as a taxi company, and should therefore not be regulated with the same rules and principles as one. This is why the ridesharing companies are now under a new classification and have now come to be known as Transportation Network Companies (TNC). Unluckily for the passengers, TNCs are generally not as regulated as the conventional taxi companies, which means that the passengers are inherently vulnerable to reckless behavior and negligence.
There’s a great need to improve the regulations of ridesharing companies so that they can be closely monitored in terms of how they operate as well as how they provide different services to the general public. To learn more about how you can get compensation after being involved in a ridesharing accident, get in touch with a professional Uber accident lawyer today.
Unclear Insurance policies
In Georgia, Uber has a comprehensive insurance policy for $1.5 million. This insurance policy is, in theory, a means to cover in kind of damages that could arise as a result of an accident. Uber and Lyft drivers are also required to carry their own personal insurance policies. When you take a closer look at both the insurance companies of the drivers and the company, it seems that just about everything is implemented properly.
However, in reality, there are quite a few loopholes with this insurance setup. For starters, there’s usually no check to determine whether the driver has the required insurance. It’s possible that the driver is underinsured or uninsured. Secondly, although Uber has its own insurance policy, there’s no guarantee that it will pay up. Insurance companies are notorious for being difficult when it comes to making these kinds of payments. They will always attempt finding reasons to deny the claim or make an excuse to blame another person or another insurance company.
How can you really tell if there are an Uber accident and the injured passenger files a claim, Uber won’t turn around and claim the driver is an independent contractor and is on their own? Technically, Uber is only required to pay if the driver was on duty and was ideally in the process of dropping a passenger or picking them up. When an accident occurs at this point, Uber’s insurance company will be held liable. However, you can bet that they won’t approve a claim so easily. That’s why you need to consult with an Uber accident attorney before you take any legal action against Uber or the driver.
Lack of proper insurance
In situations where Uber denies responsibility or when an accident happens while the Uber driver was off duty, the driver’s insurance company will be held liable for paying damages to the victims who sustained injuries or whose property was damaged. Again, this might feel ass prim and proper in theory, but in reality, there is some Uber driver who doesn’t have insurance at all, while some are underinsured. There’s also the issue of commercial insurance policy vs. personal insurance policy.
After all, the drivers are offering a service and generating some income while at it. This means their vehicle is a commercial one, meaning they need to take up a commercial car insurance policy. When the driver gets into an accident and the victim files a claim the driver’s insurer might choose to deny the claim saying the driver only took up a personal insurance cover, under which ridesharing services aren’t covered. Consult with an Uber accident attorney today in case you’re facing such a situation.
What Should I Do if a Loved One or I Have Been in an Uber or Lyft Accident?
Whenever you’re involved in any type of accident, you should inform the police immediately. The police will ideally file a formal report, which will be used as a record of the accident. Keep in mind that the accounts of an accident often change as time passes. So, it’s wise to write down the model and make of the vehicles involved, the name and license number of the driver, lots of pictures, and contact details of any witnesses. Be sure to also note the condition of the driver. Were they driving recklessly? Was the driver drunk or intoxicated? In case you or another victim needs medical attention, call an ambulance immediately.
Lyft or Uber drivers who get into an accident should contact their respective companies immediately. As a passenger, you shouldn’t talk to the insurance representatives or the company without first consulting a lawyer. Of course, we want you to speak with your insurance company, but we know why you need the protection of a personal attorney before doing so. For instance, were you aware that not wearing a seatbelt is inadmissible under Georgia Law? So, make sure that a kind insurance agent doesn’t lure you into thinking you’re dealing with anything rather than a multi-billion-dollar company that’s only looking to protect its interests.
Who is the Responsible Party in an Uber or Lyft accident?
The party at fault is ideally the person or entity deemed responsible for causing an accident of any kind. With this in mind, proving fault can be quite difficult. For a passenger, there’s really no way that you would have been at fault, and you should be eligible for recovering damages. Uber and Lyft drivers are required to have their own personal insurance policies, and they are also covered by corporate policies, which are usually clear on the Lyft and Uber websites.
Uber has an insurance arrangement for their cars from the moment the driver has accepted a trip to the moment the trip ends. UberSUV, UberBlack, and UberTaxi (cq) are all covered under the commercial partner’s insurance company based on information from the Uber website. Lyft has well laid out insurance policies for its drivers, though the amount differs when the ride is in session and when the driver is in-between rides.
Who Can I Sue For Lyft or Uber Accidents In Georgia?
In case an auto accident occurs on Georgia roads and it involves an Uber Driver, both the driver and the passengers will have their own specific protections. If the Uber driver didn’t cause the collision, the company provides underinsured and uninsured motor insurance coverage for the passenger, the driver, or both parties. In case the Uber driver is found to be at fault though, the company will provide liability insurance to protect the Uber Passenger along with the passengers or drivers of any other vehicles involved in the incident.
Here is an overview of entities that could be held liable in an Uber Accident:
Suing The Driver Of The Uber Rideshare Vehicle
Throughout the country, there has been a great debate on whether Uber drivers should be considered independent contractors or employees of the company. California was the first state to go up against Uber for classifying the drivers as independent contractors. However, Georgia hasn’t contested this form of classification, so here, the Uber drivers remain as independent contractors.
For this reason, in case of an Uber accident in Georgia, the driver will be regarded as self-employed and based on the circumstances of the crash, the person could be able to file a suit with the company instead of the driver. However, a dedicated Atlanta Uber accident attorney will work through the details of the case to determine liability properly.
On their own, the driver might be liable for the accident if they were not working at the time. For example, if the Uber driver wasn’t on the clock when the accident happened, and he/she struck a pedestrian walking across the road, Uber might be unable to cover the damages. Instead, the personal insurance coverage of the driver will have to cover the claim.
Uber does cover its drivers in accidents where they were at fault provided the driver is online with the company, such as during the time when the driver is on the way to pick up a passenger, waiting for pickup requests, and while the riders are in the car. As such, the only time they won’t cover for damages is when the driver was using the car for personal reasons or when they haven’t accepted a ride.
In case the Uber driver wasn’t carrying a passenger in the vehicle during the accident, their personal insurance policy will have to handle all of the damages suffered. However, Uber has implemented and additional liability coverage arrangement of $25,000 is property damage and $50,000 for injuries. However, the cover is only applicable if the personal insurance of the Uber driver isn’t enough to cover the damages. In case a passenger was in the car while the accident occurred, Uber’s policy will cover the passenger and the driver for up to $1,000,000.
Generally speaking, employers are held liable for their employees’ actions. Although Uber drivers are usually classified as independent contractors, the ridesharing business indemnifies the drivers in case the car accidents happen while passengers were in the vehicle. If the driver is however found to be at fault for the incident, the company’s insurance plan will automatically kick in to cover any injuries and property damages.
Keep in mind that there have been incidents where the company denied liability for a case because of the status of the driver when the accident occurred. For example, the company denied responsibility in a 2014 accident where one of its drivers hit and killed a young girl in San Francisco. The company argued that since the accident happened while the driver was between rides, Uber couldn’t be held liable for the death of the girl.
Nonetheless, since this accident, Uber restructured its insurance coverage such that it includes drivers who get involved in accidents between rides where they are online at the time. Still, liability can be quite a gray area in such cases, and a skilled lawyer will be vital in helping you determine who can be pursued for Uber accidents in Georgia.
Uber Accidents and Insurance Companies
According to the law, Uber should carry a commercial insurance policy with a high limit just for covering such accidents. This policy ideally covers the Uber drivers along with their vehicles. As such, the victims can recover compensation from the insurance company. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding your case, an Atlanta Uber accident attorney at Calvin Smith Law will help you understand your rights better.
Uber accidents typically have multiple insurance companies involved – yours, Uber’s, the driver’s, and the other party who collided with the Uber car. This can complicate the personal injury claim, especially for people who are unsure about what to say when insurance companies contact you. Hiring a lawyer will take the weight off your shoulders and make sure you handle the insurance companies well. Rather than agree to a quick insurance settlement, you should consider filing a personal injury claim.
What if I was the Driver in a Car and have been hit by an Uber or Lyft car?
In case a Lyft or Uber car hit your car, the driver will be liable. the good thing is that the drivers carry personal insurance, and they will be covered by their respective companies’ policies.
However, in Georgia, you must prove that the responsible party was more than half responsible for the accident. As a rule of thumb, don’t try to manage such a case without your lawyer present. Get in touch with us at (404) 383-7552 and let’s see how we can help you.
What if My Georgia Uber Driver Didn’t Have Insurance?
Today, Uber drivers in Georgia might not always be diligent. Just as there are instances of drivers operating vehicles on highways and roads without the right kind of insurance and licenses, the same applies for ridesharing drivers. Even if the rules and regulations were strict in terms of the licensing or traditional drivers and those who drive for hire, some people tend to find ways around these rules.
In case the Uber driver doesn’t have the proper insurance coverage, you might have substantial medical costs because of the accident. The only thing you should worry about is recovering from the accident and getting well. A lawyer will fight on your behalf to get you the justice you deserve, enabling you to focus on your recovery. They are also your best bet to pursue legal action and compensation from Uber, the driver, the insurance companies, and all the other parties involved in your case.
The Uber driver might not have insurance, they might not also be at fault for the accident. In case another driver hits the Uber vehicle while you were a passenger, you might be able to collect damages from the other driver’s insurance company so that they can compensate you for your medical expenses. Your personal injury lawyer will be by your side to help you establish who is at fault for the accident and who should be responsible for compensating you for the damages. You don’t need to pay up- the extensive costs that have probably accrued because of the injuries or damages related to the accident. So, let a knowledgeable and dedicated Lyft and Uber attorney do the work on your behalf.
What Can I Recover f I’m Injured in an Uber or Lyft accident?
If you were injured in Georgia while using a ridesharing platform, you might be eligible for receiving compensation for the medical bills and your pain and suffering, and in case the victim died, their family might be eligible for receiving compensation for the wrongful death. There are lots of personal injury lawyers available in Georgia that can work with you to pursue the compensation you need and deserve to pay for all the expenses related to the accident.
The Uber drivers are liable for any expenses related to using their cars as transportation vehicles. As such, they need to have their vehicle registration license and insurance up to date and have the necessary insurance. Although Uber provides auto commercial liability insurance for Georgia drivers, you might not always have the required coverage as a passenger. Personal injury car insurance usually has some specific jargon that prevents many drivers from working a profit. This means that they might not have to pay your claim provided they can prove that you paid the uber driver to transport you to your destination.
A personal injury lawyer will be able to work out the necessary details and ensure you receive the compensation you need to pay the expenses you incurred from the damages and injuries you incurred while riding as a passenger of the Uber vehicle. For some accidents, you might have to be hospitalized for an extended period of time and even require a great deal of medical care as a result of the injuries. Your attorney will know exactly what the Uber/Lyft driver’s insurance company has to cover in order to compensate you for the damages.
Is There a Limit on the Compensation I Can Receive in Georgia?
Any Georgia resident who suffers injuries while riding in an Uber or Lyft vehicle has the right to compensation. Fortunately, the state’s Supreme Court has effectively done away with limits on the maximum amount of compensation for damages incurred as a result of such an accident. Your car accident lawyer can, therefore, seek an unlimited amount of damages for your tangible and intangible damages. You can recover things like pain and suffering as well as lost wages in case you’re unable to work after being involved in the accident.
Once they review the details of your case, your lawyer will be able to let you know if your case qualifies for:
- Expenses relating to your medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Wrongful death compensation
How can an Uber or Lyft Accident Attorney help me?
Without a personal injury lawyer by your side to handle the case on your behalf, you’ll be at the mercy of a large company that really doesn’t care whether you are well taken care of. They typically use tactics such as delaying payments or offering small settlements. Most people find themselves getting desperate and take a quick settlement to just move on and forget about the incident. However, if you are well represented, the insurance companies will look at your case very differently.
You only have one chance to go after what you deserve. Let the professional lawyers at Calvin Smith Law help you recover the compensation you need and deserve. Our phone line is available 24/7, at (404) 383-7552. We are the real experts in personal injury law.