Rideshare companies, such as Uber and Lyft, offer convenience for both passengers and drivers. Passengers can easily summon a rideshare via an app, an alternative to hailing a cab or taking the bus or subway. Drivers generally have the flexibility to work for Uber or Lyft when it is most convenient for them. It is a win-win for both parties, unless an accident occurs.
An Uber or Lyft accident involves multiple parties. Besides the drivers of the vehicles involved, there are also the rideshare passengers and any occupants of the other cars. Pedestrians and cyclists are also often victims of Uber and Lyft accidents on the streets of Brooklyn, New York.
A Brooklyn car accident lawyer at The Rothenberg Law Firm will protect your rights while dealing with the complexity of a rideshare accident claim.
How Common Are Uber and Lyft Accidents in Brooklyn?
The popularity of ridesharing has soared in recent years, and for many passengers it is a common and convenient form of transportation. With the rise in the number of rideshare vehicles comes an increase in the number of Uber and Lyft accidents in Brooklyn and throughout New York City.
Compared to traditional taxis, rideshare vehicles, such as Uber and Lyft, were involved in a higher percentage of crashes involving injuries, according to the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission.
Uber and Lyft Insurance Requirements
When the driver is offline or their driver app is off, their personal auto insurance coverage applies. Once the driver is available or awaiting a ride request, Uber and Lyft maintain a third-party liability policy on the driver’s behalf. This includes $50,000 in bodily injury per person, $100,000 in bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 in property damage.
When the driver is en route to pick up a passenger or is carrying passengers, Uber and Lyft provide a third-party liability policy of $1 million.
Common Causes of Uber and Lyft Accidents
Common causes of Uber and Lyft accidents are similar to those of other motor vehicle collisions. They include:
- Driving under the influence– the rideshare driver may be under the influence of alcohol or drugs or the rideshare car is struck by a drunk driver or one under the influence of drugs.
- Distracted driving – the driver may be using their cellphone to text, email, navigate, etc.
- Failure to yield
- Fatigued driving
- Illegal turns
- Reckless driving
- Running a stop sign or red light
- Unsafe lane changes
Rideshare drivers must drive around seeking out the passenger making the ride request. That can lead to rubbernecking and distracted driving. This lack of attention to their surroundings can also lead to collisions with other vehicles or hitting pedestrians or cyclists.
Can I Sue Uber or Lyft After an Accident?
Drivers for Uber or Lyft are considered independent contractors, not employees. Generally, you cannot sue Uber or Lyft per se. Instead, you would sue the driver of the vehicle. As noted above, depending on the driver’s status at the time of the accident, the driver may be covered by their own personal automobile insurance policy and potentially the Uber or Lyft third-party policy. Your attorney will make sure to pursue compensation from all at-fault parties involved in your accident.
What Types of Damages are Available to Uber and Lyft Accident Victims?
Damages, or compensation, for Uber and Lyft accident victims may include:
- Medical expenses, current and future
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earnings
- Pain and suffering
The amount of compensation depends on various factors, specifically, the seriousness of your injuries, the extent of your recovery and the costs of your medical treatment.
Can I Recover Damages If I’m Being Blamed for an Uber Accident in New York?
If you were involved in an Uber accident as the other driver or in some other capacity, Uber’s insurance company may try to blame you for the crash. However, under New York’s pure contributory negligence law, if you were involved in an accident with an Uber, you may still receive compensation for your injuries even if you were partly responsible for the crash.
For instance, let’s say you were injured in an accident involving an Uber driver and you were awarded $100,000 in compensation for your injuries. If you were found to be 25 percent liable for the crash, any damages awarded are reduced by that amount. Therefore, your $100,000 award is reduced to $75,000.
How Our Brooklyn Uber and Lyft Accident Attorneys Can Help You
If you are recuperating from a serious rideshare accident injury, you must focus on your health. We will investigate the rideshare accident thoroughly and identify all liable parties. The investigation includes reviewing police and medical reports, interviewing eyewitnesses, and seeking any surveillance video capturing the crash. We may hire experts to reconstruct the collision.
In New York, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit is typically three years from the accident date. Because valuable evidence may vanish, it is critical to contact an attorney as soon as possible so that the investigation starts promptly.
Our attorneys will fight hard to make sure you receive the maximum compensation you are entitled to under the law. We fight at-fault parties and insurance companies so that you can receive the best outcome you deserve, whether it is via a settlement for full value or via litigation.
Contact The Rothenberg Law Firm
If you were seriously hurt in an Uber or Lyft accident, you need the services of an experienced Brooklyn personal injury lawyer at The Rothenberg Law Firm. Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today. After discussing your claim, we will advise you of your options. We work on a contingency basis, which means there is no fee unless and until you receive compensation. We have been handling personal injury cases for over 50 years, winning billions of dollars for our injured clients. Let us help you or your loved one.