Ft. Lauderdale Ridesharing Accident Lawyers Help Crash Victims
Ridesharing services have become a popular alternative to taxis or driving for many travelers. Companies such as Lyft and Uber use private drivers and their cars to provide transportation services to passengers who schedule their rides through apps on their phones. The convenience of setting up a ride in an app can be alluring. However, when accidents occur while using these services or with drivers who are using their own cars for ridesharing purposes, it can be complicated to get compensated for your injuries. Unfortunately, serious harm from these accidents may be more common than you think. According to this study reported by the Chicago Booth Review, there has been a 3% increase in auto accident deaths since ridesharing was implemented nationwide.
If you or a loved one has suffered a rideshare accident, navigating the complex insurance claims process can be difficult. A personal injury lawyer from RTRLAW can provide the expert legal assistance you need. Contact RTRLAW today in Ft. Lauderdale or South Florida at (954) 370-5152 or toll-free at 1-833-HIRE-RTR (1-833-447-3787) to schedule a free, no-obligation case review for your rideshare accident claim.
What Should You Do After a Rideshare Accident?
With the increasing popularity of rideshare services like Lyft and Uber, accidents involving their drivers are occurring more often. Whether you’re involved in an accident with a rideshare vehicle as a passenger, a driver of another car, or a pedestrian, you need to know how to react to the incident to protect your health and legal rights. Accident scenes can be chaotic, and the health and safety of everyone involved should be at the forefront of any response. However, taking the following steps, if and when you are able to after a crash, can safeguard your legal rights and improve your chances of recovering damages for your injuries from insurance proceeds, if necessary:
- Call 911 immediately if any victims need medical care.
- Contact the local police so they can make a report and begin an investigation of the crash.
- Use your phone to take photos of the accident scene.
- Get the names, phone numbers, and addresses of any witnesses to the accident
- Gather the insurance coverage information of the rideshare driver and any other drivers or parties involved.
- Call your insurance company to inform them about the accident and explain that it is still under investigation.
- Reach out to an experienced rideshare accident attorney who can evaluate your case and explain any further steps you need to take.
- It’s important that you don’t sign any statements or agree to any settlements without discussing your claim first with a lawyer.
Rideshare drivers are covered by their company’s insurance when carrying passengers, with coverage up to $1 million. This can make a huge difference if you have serious injuries that require extensive medical treatment. To ensure you can prove that you were a passenger at the time the accident occurred, take the two following actions:
- Take screenshots on your phone to prove that you were a rideshare passenger at the time of the accident.
- Take a picture of the driver’s rideshare app showing their status when the accident occurred.
What Insurance Coverages Do Lyft or Uber Drivers Carry?
One factor that makes rideshare accidents so complex is the varying insurance coverage carried by Uber and Lyft drivers. The coverage changes based on what the driver is doing when the accident occurs. The breakdown is as follows:
- If the driver is not on the clock at the time of the accident: The driver is treated the same as any other driver on the road, and only the driver’s personal car insurance will apply.
- If the driver is on the rideshare app but has not yet accepted a ride: The driver typically has liability coverage through their rideshare company of $50,000 per person/$100,000 per accident, and $25,000 in property damage coverage.
- If the driver has accepted a ride in the app and is driving to pick up that passenger or has a rideshare passenger in the vehicle: The rideshare company typically carries $1,000,000 of coverage per accident, which includes uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
As you can imagine, this can become very confusing to figure out after an accident. Adding to the challenges is the fact that Florida is a no-fault state. This means that, following a car accident with a private driver, an injured victim must file a claim with his or her own insurance carrier under their Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage to handle medical bills and lost wages incurred from the accident.
Our skilled rideshare accident lawyers can sort through these complicated situations to help you get the compensation you deserve.
What is the Statute of Limitations on Rideshare Accident Claims?
The statute of limitations are rules set by each state that establish the time period that an accident or crime victim has to bring legal action following an incident. Failure to file a claim within these time limits will result in the victim losing the ability to recover damages for their injuries, because the court will no longer hear the case.
Currently, Florida does not have a specific statute of limitations on rideshare accident claims. Instead, these claims fall under the statute of limitations for personal injury cases, which is four years from the date of the accident.
One other time limit to keep in mind for your Uber or Lyft accident is the restriction on PIP benefits: To file a PIP claim, you must seek medical treatment within 14 days of your accident.
What Damages Can Be Obtained in a Rideshare Accident Claim?
Any vehicle accident has the potential to leave victims with long-lasting physical, mental, and financial damages. Even reasonably minor crashes can cause injuries that lead to medical bills and lost time at work. In major accidents, the cost of medical care can quickly outstrip your PIP benefits. You can file a personal injury claim to recover compensation for both the economic and non-economic losses you’ve suffered.
Economic damages account for the financial harm the accident has caused, such as:
- Lost wages
- Physical therapy and rehabilitation
- Medical costs, such as surgery bills, doctor visits, prescription medication, and more
- Loss of future earning potential
- Costs for ongoing medical care
However, financial disruptions are not the only issues caused by an accident. Non-economic damages cover the non-monetary losses the rideshare accident caused, including:
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering, and
- Mental anguish
You also have legal options if the unimaginable has occurred and your loved one was killed in a rideshare accident. You could be eligible to bring a wrongful death lawsuit against those responsible. A wrongful death lawsuit seeks compensation for funeral and burial expenses, the loss of your loved one’s support and companionship, and other damages related to their passing.
What Can a Rideshare Accident Lawyer Do for You?
While rideshare companies may initially act concerned about your injuries and try to offer you a quick settlement, it’s crucial to remember that they are for-profit businesses. As such, their main goal is maintaining their bottom line and limiting the amount they pay for your claim. You deserve to get full compensation that covers all of your current and future damages.
The rideshare accident attorneys at RTRLAW understand the complex laws surrounding Uber and Lyft crash claims in Florida. While our skilled lawyers can usually successfully negotiate a settlement without taking the case to trial, RTRLAW will take on large companies like Uber and Lyft in court when necessary to get you the compensation you deserve.
If you’ve been hurt in a rideshare accident, call (954) 370-5152 in Ft. Lauderdale or South Florida, or toll-free at 1-833-HIRE-RTR (833-447-3787) to schedule your free, no-obligation case review today.