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Sandra Dee Sizemore
Ridesharing has become a popular transportation option for many people because they’re a safe, convenient, and affordable way to get around the city. However, once a passenger gets involved in a rideshare accident, the road to recovery gets tricky.
Because, unlike regular car accidents, Uber accidents involve a corporation that can be held liable in addition to the at-fault driver. That’s why we’re letting you know what to do when you get in an Uber accident and how a Florida Uber accident lawyer can help you get proper compensation to recover from your injuries.
Steps After Being Involved in an Uber Accident in Florida
An Uber car accident should be treated like any other vehicle accident by making sure everyone involved in the accident is safe, contacting law enforcement, and recording all the details needed to file your claims.
- Don’t panic. We know it’s easier said than done. However, staying calm will help you make rational decisions after the Uber accident. Remember that accidents can happen to anyone and often when we least expect it. So there’s no reason to blame yourself for not preventing the accident from happening.
- Seek medical care even if you don’t have injuries. Some injuries aren’t noticeable until several days or weeks later. Getting checked by a medical professional doesn’t just help you recover more quickly. You can also gather your medical records from the doctor to submit as proof for your injury claim. That way, the at-fault parties can’t argue that you’re partly liable for your injuries.
- Take photos and videos of the vehicle damages, your injuries, the driver’s insurance information, and your license plate number. Gather witnesses’ statements and their contact details. Often, insurance companies and attorneys rely on their statements to determine which parties are responsible for the accident.
- File an accident crash report with the police. Let the officer know about your injuries and mention you were a rideshare passenger at the time of the accident.
- Contact a Florida Uber accident attorney. A skilled lawyer can foresee issues that can arise from dealing with insurance companies and hold the respective rideshare company accountable. Rideshare insurance policies are still relatively new and ever-evolving. An experienced rideshare accident attorney will keep tabs on the changes and initiate a claim when possible.
Uber and Lyft Driver Safety Requirements in Florida
Whether you’re a rideshare passenger or a driver, it’s essential to know the vehicle safety requirements that all Uber and Lyft drivers must follow:
The vehicle must:
- Be a minivan or have four doors.
- Be a vehicle model from 2005 or newer.
- Be registered, insured, and pass a vehicle inspection.
- Be functional and have no noticeable damage to the body.
- Carry its registration, insurance, and inspection documents.
All rideshare drivers should have gone through an online screening process before starting to transport passengers. Once completing the background check, drivers can start taking passengers as long as they comply with these rules:
The driver must:
- Be at least 21 years old.
- Have at least a year of driving experience in the U.S.
- Have a valid U.S. driver’s license, proof of registration, and vehicle insurance.
Causes of Most Uber Accidents in Florida
Uber accidents can happen just like any other car accident. However, Uber and Lyft drivers can cause more risk because they’re more likely to look at their phones while driving and get distracted finding a destination or a passenger.
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Failure to yield to the right of way of vehicles and pedestrians
- Picking up or dropping off a passenger in an unsafe location
- Reckless driving
- Illegal turns
- Running a stop sign or red light
- Defective vehicle parts
- Lack of experience driving in hazardous road conditions
Types of Damages Available to Uber Accident Victims
Economic damages are the auto accident victim’s out-of-pocket expenses, including medical bills, lost wages, future medical expenses, lost future earning capacity, physical therapy, rehabilitation, long-term care, and property damage.
Non-economic damages are intangible losses due to the accident victim’s injuries, including pain and suffering, distress, mental anguish, disfigurement and scarring, funeral expenses, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of independence, and loss of consortium.
Punitive damages aren’t available in every case and are often reserved for gross negligence or intentional acts.
To hold the driver liable for the Uber accident, you will have to prove that the driver caused the accident out of negligence. An experienced Uber accident attorney can help you strengthen your case by evaluating the following types of evidence:
- Police reports
- Surveillance video footage
- Photos of the accident scene
- Eyewitness testimonies
- Phone records
- Past safety records
- Vehicle camera footage
- The driver’s in-app driving log
How Our Uber and Lyft Accident Attorneys Can Help
Even though Florida is a no-fault state, Uber and Lyft are exempt from this law. That means you can directly seek compensation from the ride-sharing companies after an accident. However, their insurance providers, like many others, don’t have your best interest in mind and will do what it takes to minimize their payout.
Our experienced personal injury lawyers can speak with their insurance providers on your behalf to get you fair compensation. Contact us at Denmon Pearlman Law Firm for a free consultation with one of our Uber accident attorneys in Tampa, St. Petersburg, New Port Richey & Brooksville. You deserve to get your life back to normal. There’s no fee unless we win!
Filing an Insurance Claim for a Rideshare Accident in Florida
Florida’s Statute of Limitations states you have four years to file a personal injury claim and two years for a wrongful death claim. However, we suggest you get in touch with a personal injury attorney immediately after the accident. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be for you to strengthen your accident case against the opposing parties.
Factors Contributing to Your Claim’s Value
Unlike regular car accident claims, the value of an Uber accident claim depends on the Uber driver’s app status when the accident happened. Specifically, that status is divided into four unique cases:
The Driver is Available or Waiting for a Ride Request
Uber’s insurance policy includes $50,000 in bodily injury per person, $100,000 in bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 in property damage coverage. This third-party coverage only applies if your personal insurance coverage won’t compensate you for your losses.
The Driver is Logged Out of the Rideshare App
When the driver is logged out of the app, the driver doesn’t have Uber insurance coverage at all. The driver will have to tap into their personal auto insurance as if they just experienced a regular motor vehicle accident.
During Trips and When the Driver is Picking Up the Passenger
Rideshare insurance coverage is highest when either the passenger is in the rideshare vehicle or the driver is on their way to pick up the passenger. Uber’s policy includes up to $1 million in third-party liability coverage, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, and contingent collision coverage with a $2,500 deductible. However, it’s worth noting that accessing this coverage isn’t straightforward and often takes an experienced attorney to hold the rideshare companies accountable after an accident.
Frequently Asked Questions After an Uber Accident in Florida
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