Lyft and Uber Accidents
An Orlando lawyer who will fight for your rights
If you have been involved in a car accident involving an Uber or Lyft car, it’s important to get trusted legal advice as soon as possible. The laws dictating how insurance works for these new transportation companies are not always clear, and you only get one shot at a financial recovery for your injuries.
Attorney Michael Cerasa of The Cerasa Law Firm LLC is very familiar with these laws and how these companies respond to accidents. He can guide you through the legal process to ensure you are treated fairly and help you recover the compensation you deserve.
Experience handling complex cases
Lyft and Uber went from being virtually unknown years ago to quickly positioning themselves to replace traditional taxi-cabs. They reshaped the personal transportation industry seemingly overnight, but these changes have created several questions about what happens when one of their cars gets into an accident.
These companies have really blurred the lines between employee and independent contractor, as well as the lines between when someone is and is not “working.” This is of course very important from an insurance standpoint, since the insurance company will treat the claim differently. There are basically three different insurance “situations”:
- When the driver is unavailable to pick up passengers, they are covered by their own personal auto insurance policy, just like any other driver.
- When the driver is available to, but has not yet picked up a passenger, they are primarily covered by their regular auto insurance policy but also have additional coverage of up to $50,000 per injury for a total of $100,000 and up to $25,000 in property damage.
- Once the driver has the passenger in the car, they are covered by a $1 million liability policy and a $1 million uninsured/underinsured policy.
Instead of being full-time employees, drivers are actually classified as independent contractors, or third-party service providers. This distinction is important because the companies can use it as a defense when it comes to being responsible for their driver's actions. Generally, a company is responsible for the actions of its employees, however they are generally NOT responsible for the actions of independent contractors that they hire.
While there are a million potential scenarios that would be covered by different insurance policies, generally Lyft and Uber accidents can be put into one of two categories:
A passenger is injured
If you are injured as a passenger in a Lyft or Uber car, the insurance should cover up to $1 million, even if the accident was caused by the other driver, but the other driver didn't have insurance. However, you are not allowed to sue Lyft or Uber for more than the $1 million limit, even if the driver was acting irresponsibly. Normally, if the drivers were classified as employees, they would have unlimited liability, but because the drivers are classified as independent contractors, the companies are able to set a limit for the damages that they have to pay out.
A bystander is injured
In the case that you were injured either as a driver or passenger in another car that was involved in an accident with a Lyft or Uber car, the insurance coverage will depend on whether or not the car was actively carrying a passenger.
There are several potential issues that can arise when someone is injured and a Lyft or Uber is involved. Because of the confusing nature of the insurance policies that cover Lyft and Uber cars, it's important that you do not sign or agree to anything without speaking with an experienced attorney first.