Have You Been Involved in an Accident as an Uber or Lyft Passenger? This Is What You Need to Know

**You must seek treatment for you injuries that you have suffered as a result of your auto accident at a hospital, doctors office or chiropractor within 14 days of the day of the accident or you will loose you personal injury protection benefits under you insurance policy forever.**

12.08.2017

At times, traffic in Pensacola is anything, but desirable. When this is paired with the vast landscape of the metropolitan area, relying on rideshare services like Uber or Lyft seems like an excellent way to get around town. However, what happens if you get in an accident while using these services?

If you've been the passenger in an Uber or Lyft accident, the legalities of this situation have probably left you with several concerns. Here is some information you need to know.

Understand That You Are Covered

After the accident, you may have contacted your own vehicle insurance company to process a claim. Your efforts were likely swiftly denied, sending you into a state of panic. The reason for this denial is that personal policies rarely provide coverage when you're the passenger in a commercially operated vehicle.

While rideshare companies have had their fair share of regulatory concerns, insurance coverage isn't typically one of them. Florida has clear laws concerning the protection of passengers and requires all rideshare companies to insure their drivers and vehicles with policies that cover death, property damage and bodily injury claims, with a minimum coverage amount of $1 million.

Understand That Accident Fault Does Matter

While established that rideshare companies, such as Uber and Lyft, are required to offer substantial insurance policies, just like any other accident, who was at fault has a lot to do with the source of any additional protection.

When the Uber Driver Is at Fault

If the cause of the accident is the result of negligent actions on the part of the Uber driver, your safest bet for getting coverage is generally to go after the policy provided by the rideshare company. However, in instances of gross negligence, you may be able to pursue filing with the driver's insurance company as well.

When the Other Driver Is at Fault

If the vehicle was involved in an accident due to the negligence of another motorist on the roadway, your possibilities for coverage expands. Although your and the rideshare driver's personal policy doesn't cover commercial operation, the liability component of personal policies makes no differentiation between private and commercial service.

Therefore, if the other driver is at fault, their liability remains regardless of the vehicle's commercial status. In this instance, you have the legal authority to seek compensation from this driver's policy as well.

Understand the Coverage Guidelines

The state of Florida is also transparent when it comes to the types of injuries and damages you can seek compensation for when involved in an accident. Here are some of the common areas of coverage:

  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Loss wages
  • Loss of capacity
  • Pain and suffering

It's important to highlight that these only represent common areas of coverage. The law does not mandate automatic coverage nor does it limit coverage to these areas. The specifics of your case will determine your rights.

Be Careful of Red Tape

When you are seeking compensation from a policy that backs a larger company, understand that you are inadvertently also going after the reputation of the organization. Large companies like Uber and Lyft, spare nothing when it comes to protecting their professional status, as it is the lifeline of their brand.

For this reason, understand that there is often a fair amount of red tape involved in this process, and it probably won't be easy to receive compensation from these companies.

Accident victims are often urged to agree to swift settlements, which could lead to their case being undervalued. Victims are also usually required to sign a release agreement that prevents them from making the terms of the settlement public. An attorney at David Mann & Associates is here to help you sort through this challenging situation and ensure you get the compensation you need and deserve. Contact our team today.

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