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Injured in an Uber Accident—Who Is Liable?

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September 10, 2023 Car Accidents

Uber, the popular ridesharing service, has revolutionized how people commute. You can access the swift, convenient, and affordable service virtually anywhere in the country.

As the service has grown in popularity, so have the risks of hiring a rideshare service. The most significant of these risks is traffic accidents, which can cause injuries and losses to the victims.

For passengers and drivers alike, Uber makes navigating an accident claim daunting. Determining liability in a sea of multiple insurance policies that kick in at different times makes an Uber accident case particularly challenging.

Whether you are an Uber driver, passenger, or another party in the accident, an Uber accident attorney can seek compensation for your injuries.

Uber’s Insurance Policy

Before delving deeper into the complexities of liability in Uber accidents, you will want a lawyer to explain how Uber’s insurance policy applies to your claim.

Insurance coverage determines your sources of compensation for your injuries and damages in an Uber accident.

When Does Uber’s Insurance Policy Apply in an Accident?

Uber’s complex insurance policy provides no blanket coverage for any accident involving an Uber driver. Instead, coverage depends on whether an Uber driver is actively completing a pre-arranged ride or is available for a ride but without a passenger. If an Uber driver is not active on the app during a collision, coverage from Uber’s policy does not apply.

Injured in an Uber Accident—Who Is Liable

A lower-limit policy applies when an Uber driver is available for a ride but has yet to accept one. At this stage, coverage typically includes up to $50,000 per person, $100,000 per accident for bodily injury, and $25,000 for property damage. Once the driver accepts a ride request through the application or has a passenger in their vehicle, a $1 million policy applies.

After an accident with an Uber driver who is not actively using the app during the crash, you could pursue compensation through the driver’s private vehicle insurance coverage.

Determining Liability in an Uber Accident

Liability is the legal responsibility for one’s acts or omissions, including negligence. In a car accident, determining who acted negligently can reveal fault and liability for the resulting harm and damages.

Understanding the Concept of Liability

Simply put, a party is liable when their negligent actions cause an accident. Negligence is the legal idea that individuals must uphold a duty of care toward others.

Examples of negligence in an Uber collision may include:

In an Uber accident, the Uber driver or another driver may bear liability for the accident. Multiple parties may share fault in a crash, depending on the events leading up to it.

Factors That Determine Liability in an Uber Accident

Many factors come into play when determining responsibility for a crash, including the drivers’ behavior and the circumstances under which the Uber driver operated.

For instance, was the Uber driver distracted or speeding at the time of the accident? Was another driver at fault? Was the Uber driver on duty but without a passenger, or did the accident happen during a rideshare trip?

Answering these critical questions can identify liability for an Uber accident. An accident attorney well-versed in Uber accident cases can analyze these factors and explain your compensation options.

Liability When the Uber Driver Is at Fault

When the Uber driver causes an accident, they bear primary liability for the damages. This can occur when a reckless or inattentive Uber driver fails to adhere to traffic laws.

If the driver is actively using the Uber app during the accident, either waiting for a ride request or with a passenger, Uber’s $1 million insurance policy applies. This does not mean that you will automatically receive $1 million. You must file a claim, prove the coverage applies to your circumstances, and verify your damages.

If the Uber driver was not engaging in rideshare services with Uber when the accident occurred, you could still receive compensation. You may need to identify other compensation sources, such as the driver’s personal car insurance policy, to cover your losses.

The compensation amount depends on the extent of the injuries and associated costs. Your damages could include medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.

Liability When Another Driver Is at Fault

Sometimes the Uber driver does not cause the rideshare accident. When another driver causes the accident, their insurance should cover the damages to you and the other parties. You can file a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance policy in this scenario.

If an uninsured or underinsured at-fault driver causes the crash, Uber’s Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage could cover certain losses.

Liability Involving Multiple at Fault Parties

More complex situations arise when multiple parties contribute to the Uber accident. In such cases, the parties may split the liability depending on their percentage of fault. This can complicate your access to compensation, as it takes an experienced Uber accident lawyer to ascertain exact percentages of fault and negotiate with multiple insurance companies.

When multiple parties contribute to a crash, you may pursue additional sources of compensation. An Uber accident attorney can evaluate your case and advise you on the best approach for recovering your losses against the responsible party or parties.

What Do I Do After an Uber Accident?

After an Uber accident, your actions will affect how your claim proceeds and your right to compensation. Taking appropriate steps to protect your interests following an accident can help you seek compensation from the at-fault parties.

Get Medical Treatment for Your Injuries

You must promptly address any injuries you sustain in an accident and follow through with all treatment. Even if your injuries seem minor, get an evaluation and follow-up from a medical professional, as some injuries may not immediately appear or can worsen over time.

Comply with any recommended treatments and keep a detailed record of all medical procedures, prescriptions, and costs of your care. This proves the physical effects of the accident and the financial burden your injuries caused.

Document the Accident and Its Aftermath

Documenting the Uber accident allows you to gather the necessary evidence to prove fault for your damages.

Some tips for gathering evidence after an Uber accident include:

  • Take clear, detailed photos of the accident scene from various angles, including each vehicle, your injuries, location identifiers, and any other physical damage.
  •  Gather contact details from all parties involved in the accident and any witnesses, including names, phone numbers, addresses, license plate numbers, and insurance information.
  • Create a journal to write down the sequence of events leading up to the accident to the best of your ability. This will help you to recall the details of the accident more accurately.
  • Keep copies of all incident reports, whether from the police or the ridesharing app, as these can establish the facts of the incident and corroborate your claim.

Dealing with injuries and their effects on your life can make the immediate aftermath of an accident stressful and disorienting. Gathering as much evidence as possible following an accident can significantly help as you move forward with a compensation claim.

Report the Accident to Uber Through the App

Once the immediate crisis ends and you seek medical attention, report the accident to Uber through the app. To do this, navigate to the “Your Trips” section, select the trip during which the accident took place, and click on “I had an accident” in the help section. You must then provide basic details about what happened.

Refrain from delving into the accident and your injuries. Answer the basic questions, such as when and where the accident occurred and who was involved. Your attorney should address further questions regarding the crash, such as information about the severity of your injuries and other damages.

Do not speak to any representative from Uber or its insurance carrier about the crash. Hire an Uber accident attorney to handle those communications.

Hire an Uber Accident Lawyer as Soon as Possible

Your Uber accident lawyer has experience with the intricacies of the law as it pertains to rideshare accidents and can advocate for your rights. They can gather evidence, prepare a strong case, handle negotiations with insurance companies, navigate the claim process, and represent you in court if necessary.

The sooner you contact an Uber accident attorney, the better your chances are of securing a successful outcome for your claim. Time is of the essence in Uber accident cases due to the legal timeline for filing a claim after a crash. Equally important is preserving evidence and information relevant to your claim, which becomes increasingly difficult as time passes.

How to File a Claim After an Uber Accident

An Uber accident lawyer can file a claim under Uber’s insurance coverage and any other applicable insurance policies. Your attorney can navigate the process on your behalf, which may involve proving liability, documenting your injuries, and negotiating a fair settlement.

You may need to seek compensation through your own insurance company, particularly if it involves uninsured or underinsured parties. An Uber accident lawyer can explain your options for compensation and advise you on the next steps.

When You Suffer Injuries in an Uber Accident, Protect Your Rights

Keith Fuicelli, Attorney for Uber and Lyft Accident

Keith Fuicelli, Uber Accident Lawyer

An Uber accident can wreak sudden havoc on your life, leading to physical suffering, financial strain, and emotional distress. As a victim, you have legal rights. When you are in an Uber accident that causes injuries and damages, do not hesitate to seek legal advice to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

Contact a personal injury attorney to discuss your case and how to file a claim against the parties liable for your damages.

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