Current estimates suggest there are over 5 million rideshare transactions per day. With so many cars on the road, accidents will happen. If you ever find yourself ordering an Uber or Lyft, you may wonder what happens after a rideshare accident.
What Should I Do After a Rideshare Accident?
You should handle a rideshare accident as you would any other crash. First, ensure the safety of everyone involved. Call for emergency services if anyone is unconscious or you see blood.
If you see significant vehicle damage, call for a police officer. Having an officer write a formal report at the scene creates a record documenting the crash and immediate injuries.
The drivers will exchange insurance information. You’ll want to collect some information as well, including…
· Home addresses
· Phone numbers
· Insurance providers
· Policy numbers
· Driver’s license numbers
· License plate numbers
· Pictures of the scene
· Pictures of damage to both vehicles
While exchanging information, make sure both you and your drive report the accident on the app. If you fail to notify the rideshare company of the accident, they have no way to verify that your claims are legitimate.
Once you’ve answered a few questions from the responding police officer, you should go to a doctor, call your insurance company, and find an experienced Atlanta personal injury attorney to help you through the case.
Who Pays for the Crash?
Rideshare drivers are not employees of Uber or Lyft. Both rideshare companies consider drivers independent contractors, meaning the company cannot be held responsible for their actions. For that reason, an Uber driver’s first line of defense is their personal insurance.
If either driver’s personal insurance is insufficient to cover the damages, both Uber and Lyft apply a special driver insurance policy to cover both the passenger and the driver. However, the amount of coverage depends on what the driver was doing in the time of the crash.
Why Does Timing Matter?
Uber and Lyft both divide their drivers’ time in to “periods.” These criteria determine different amounts of liability coverage in the event of a crash.
Both major rideshare companies divide a driver’s time into four categories. These are,
Period 0: Offline
Period 0 refers to drivers who are registered rideshare drivers but are not using the app. This period provides no coverage from the rideshare company.
Period 1: Pending Ride Request
Period 1 refers to a driver who has the app turned on and is actively seeking a passenger. At this stage, Uber and Lyft grant third-party liability coverage. This means the rideshare companies will cover damages and losses to people hurt by the driver but will not cover the driver themselves.
Period 2: Matched with Passenger
Drivers enter period 2 when they match with a passenger. Until the passenger gets in the vehicle, both major rideshare companies offer an additional $1 million in third-party liability coverage.
Period 3: Passenger in Vehicle
Period 3 begins the moment a passenger gets in the vehicle. While transporting a passenger, drivers receive extra coverage, such as uninsured motorist liability. Both major rideshare companies also include collision protection, but only if the driver has collision protection on their personal policy.
Should I Speak to an Attorney?
You should never go against massive billion-dollar businesses or their insurance companies and lawyers alone. When you hire an attorney, you maximize your chances of receiving the largest settlement possible.
Moreover, you can rest and recover while your attorney makes phone calls, speaks to the insurance companies, and handles your bills. Best of all, personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don’t pay unless they win.If you or someone you love suffered serious injuries in a rideshare accident, you might have a case. If you’d like an Atlanta personal injury attorney from Buddoo and Associates to evaluate your case, please call (404) 800-3755 or send us an email.