Though fares are rising dramatically, the rideshare industry has come to dominate personal transportation in Los Angeles County. However, the average Uber or Lyft driver does not make much money. These are often people working a second job to make ends meet or hustling to make not much more than $20 per hour.
If you were a passenger in an Uber or Lyft accident or struck by a rideshare driver in Santa Clarita, One Law Group wants you to know your rights to financial compensation for your injuries.
Why the Rideshare System Can Be Dangerous
The one certainty is that the rideshare companies are making money. No matter what, they will get their commission every time someone gets into a rideshare vehicle simply for providing the technology platform. The entire rideshare system is dangerous for a number of reasons:
- Drivers can get onto the road with passengers in very little time after applying to drive with minimal training.
- Drivers are often tired because they are working at night after putting in a full day at another job.
- Drivers continuously have their eye on the app because that is how they get and respond to ride requests.
Rideshare companies may not screen or scrutinize their drivers as thoroughly as they should. These days, there are not enough rideshare drivers to go around, meaning that these companies may cut corners even more.
Both passengers and other drivers on the road can be injured in rideshare accidents. If you are an injured passenger, you must figure out which one of the two drivers was at fault to file a claim. If you were another driver injured in a ride-sharing car collision, you must prove that the driver was at fault in the crash to get financial compensation.
You Still Cannot Sue Rideshare Companies Directly for Accidents
In California, there has been controversy, new laws, and litigation about a rideshare driver’s legal status.
Uber and Lyft classify these drivers as independent contractors, meaning the legal doctrine of respondeat superior does not apply. Even though California passed AB5 to target this classification, a ballot initiative allowed Uber and Lyft to keep calling their drivers independent contractors. Until this law changes, you cannot sue rideshare companies for car accident damages. As unfair as it seems, it is the legal rule.
Insurance Coverage for Rideshare Accidents
Still, rideshare companies maintain a relatively large insurance policy that is meant to cover accidents caused by their drivers. There are several stages of coverage for a rideshare accident:
- If the driver does not have the app turned on, their personal insurance policy will cover damages in accidents that they cause.
- If the driver has the app on but they have not accepted a ride request, the rideshare companies offer $50,000 in bodily injury per person, $100,000 in bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 in property damage per accident.
- If the driver has accepted a ride request or has a passenger in the car, there is coverage for up to $1 million in third-party liability.
Rideshare companies generally work with several large national insurance companies in long-term arrangements to get coverage for as little money as possible in the event of an accident.
Why Rideshare Accident Claims May Be Difficult
Many people are reassured when they see that there is up to $1 million in coverage, but there are several reasons why you should not feel secure:
- Just because the coverage is there does not mean that insurance companies want to pay you the money you deserve.
- The coverage is on a per-accident basis, meaning that several people may be filing claims against the same policy, potentially limiting your recovery.
- Rideshare drivers may not have additional coverage on top of what the companies offer, forcing you to try to enforce a judgment against them personally for the rest.
The insurance companies do not make it easy for you to get money, even when you legally deserve it. Depending on the location, rideshare companies may pay more than $2,000 per year for each driver insured.
The insurance companies want to keep as much money for themselves as possible. Therefore, they will underestimate your damages and present you with low settlement offers. People who do not know any better may jump at these low settlement offers to get money in their pocket.
How a Rideshare Accident Attorney in Santa Clarita Will Help You
Here are some reasons why you need to hire our experienced rideshare accident attorneys after you have suffered an injury:
- Your attorney will investigate the accident, gathering evidence that can prove who was responsible.
- We will help you navigate the complex legal rules that govern rideshare accidents.
- We can determine against which policy you will need to file a claim.
- Our qualified attorneys can negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf, advising you to reject offers that do not fully pay you.
- Your counsel will handle all the communications with the insurance company, keeping you from dealing with them yourself.
Hiring our team at One Law Group means you are not under any obligation to pay them anything until you win your case. If we cannot settle your rideshare accident claim out of court, our lawyers are always willing to go to trial and win your rightful accident injury compensation.
Contact Our Santa Clarita Rideshare Accident Lawyers Today
The One Law Group understands the complex laws that apply to Uber and Lyft accidents and how to maximize financial compensation for our clients. The first thing that you need to do after getting medical help is contact our rideshare accident attorneys in Santa Clarita to begin your legal case. You can contact us online or call us at (844) 626-1529 to schedule your free initial consultation.
Rideshare Accident FAQs
How much is my rideshare accident case worth?
Once you hire us, we will review your case to calculate the damages that you personally suffered from the accident.
What if the rideshare driver was not at fault?
You could file a claim against the other driver’s insurance policy if they were the ones who suffered an injury.