What To Do If You Are Injured In An Uber Accident

What To Do If You Are Injured In An Uber Accident

Ridesharing, through providers like Uber, continues to grow as a preferred means of transportation worldwide. Passengers can get affordable rides almost on demand. Drivers can set their own hours and pick and choose their rides. And rideshare apps coordinate it all.

Passengers using rideshare services are entrusting their safety to the driving capabilities of drivers they don’t know who are driving their own cars. What happens if an Uber driver causes an accident that injures a passenger? Does the driver have insurance to cover passengers?  Does the rideshare company?

At the Law Offices of Joseph Rome, we understand that as more people participate in ridesharing, the likelihood of accidents involving rideshare drivers increases. Our Kirkland Uber accident attorney works with insurance companies to get compensation for clients injured in rideshare accidents.

Who is Liable to Passengers in Rideshare Accidents?

The relationship between a rideshare company and a rideshare driver is not one of employer and employee. So when rideshare drivers get into accidents passengers cannot automatically look to the rideshare company for compensation. The rideshare driver or anyone else who caused the accident are the ones legally responsible.

However, it really doesn’t seem fair that rideshare companies should be able to build their businesses without providing adequate means to cover the risk of damage from accidents. So rideshare companies provide third-party liability insurance coverage for their drivers. But the coverage only applies when a rideshare driver is engaging in certain rideshare activities.

Rideshare Driver Personal Auto Insurance

Rideshare companies like Uber have particular qualifications that their drivers must meet in order to drive for the company. One of those requirements is that an Uber driver must maintain an auto insurance policy that meets a state’s minimum financial responsibility laws.

The problem with a personal auto policy providing coverage for a paid passenger is that the policies are not underwritten for commercial purposes and most exclude coverage when a personal vehicle is being used for hire.

Many auto insurers now offer rideshare insurance endorsements that allow a driver’s personal auto policy to apply during certain time periods when the rideshare company’s policy does not.

Rideshare Company Liability Insurance

Most rideshare companies provide $1M of third-party liability coverage for drivers who are on their way to pick up a rider or are transporting a rider. However, in order for the coverage to apply a driver must be logged onto the rideshare app.

There is limited third-party liability coverage for drivers who are logged onto the app and waiting for ride requests. Typical limits are:

  • $50,000 per person bodily injury
  • $100,000 per accident bodily injury
  • $25,000 property damage

The coverage only applies to the extent a driver’s personal auto policy doesn’t provide coverage.

Where to Get Help After an Uber Accident

For the purposes of determining what insurance may provide coverage after an Uber auto accident, the timeline of the rideshare driver is important. A rideshare passenger that is in the vehicle when the accident occurs should have coverage from the rideshare company.

But if the situation is less clear, it may be that the rideshare company is not responsible which can leave an injured rideshare passenger without adequate compensation. This is why you need an experienced rideshare accident lawyer as your advocate when you make your claim.

Kirkland personal injury attorney Joseph Rome has been representing clients injured in car accidents for more than a decade. He knows how to argue for coverage in ridesharing accident cases and is skilled at negotiating favorable settlements. For a free consultation, contact the Law Offices of Joseph Rome or call us at 425-429-1729.