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Uber / Lyft Accident Attorney Los Angeles
With an exponential increase in ride sharing transportation like Uber and Lyft, there has been an ever-growing problem with car accidents arising from these services.
With an exponential increase in ride-sharing transportation services like Uber and Lyft, there has been an ever-growing problem with car accidents arising from these services in Los Angeles. Unlike other similar forms of transportation, such as taxis or public transportation, Uber and Lyft are not as regulated. In part because they are still new and in part because of the uniqueness of ride-sharing transportation itself. While the insurance companies and proper governmental entities are figuring out adequate policies for ridesharing companies, it is essential to hire an experienced Uber accident attorney Los Angeles who can properly handle Uber and Lyft claims. Here at Bojat Law Group, we take pride in successfully handling accidents involving Uber and Lyft. Insurance companies covering Uber and Lyft are aware of the aggressive approach of Bojat Law Group and our ability to obtain the highest settlements for our clients. The issues arising from this new form of transportation give rise to several important questions when Uber or Lyft accidents occur.
What are the differences between Uber and Lyft accidents compared to other motor vehicle accidents? What Are the Common Causes of Uber and Lyft Accidents? Who is liable for Uber and Lyft accidents? Who will pay for damages in an Uber or Lyft accident? Do I need an Uber or Lyft accident lawyer?
Difference Between Uber and Lyft Accidents From Other Motor Vehicle Accidents
Uber and Lyft drivers are covered under a $1 million liability policy through an insurance company if an accident occurs during the course and scope of their employment, meaning during an actual trip or during the drive to pick up a passenger.
In Los Angeles most motor vehicle drivers do not have such high liability insurance policies. In California, all drivers are required by law to have at least a 15/30 liability coverage, meaning the other party may recover $15,000 per person and up to $30,000 per accident. This means if “driver A” causes the accident and injures “driver B,” then driver B can recover up to $15,000 from “driver A’s” insurance company. However, if “driver B” has a passenger in their car, “passenger C,” then “passenger C” may also recover up to another $15,000 for their damages from “driver A’s” insurance company. Moreover, if “driver B” has another passenger, “passenger D” then all three of them (driver B, passenger C, and passenger D) may only recover up to $30,000 for their damages from driver A’s insurance company. Hence the $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident insurance policy. However, that is not to say that “driver A” may not be sued personally for the damages caused by the accident.
The difference in coverage between Uber and Lyft drivers and most drivers in the state of California is important especially when an accident causes serious bodily injuries, like brain injuries or other catastrophic injuries. Such serious bodily injuries require extensive medical care and result in often permanent pain and suffering, and thus require higher insurance coverages for the injured party to be made whole.
What Are Common Causes for Uber and Lyft Accidents?
Unlike other transportation services, such as the trucking business, in which a driver is only permitted to drive a certain number of hours per shift, such regulation does not exist for Uber or Lyft drivers. That fact, coupled with the fact that Uber and Lyft drivers only earn money if they transport drivers, will make many Uber and Lyft drivers take longer shifts in an effort to make extra money. This in turn allows Uber and Lyft drivers to drive well over 12 hours per day, 7 days per week. After such long days at work, Uber and Lyft drivers are often fatigued, making them less alert and more prone to making mistakes on the road and subsequently causing an Uber or Lyft motor vehicle accident.
The clear majority of Uber or Lyft drivers do not have any professional transportation training, which would be required if they were professional truck drivers, bus drivers, or worked for other various professional transportation businesses.
Becoming an Uber or Lyft driver is a fairly simple process. There are 3 simple steps: Complete an Application Online, Get Your Car Inspected, and Pass the Background Check. For most applicants that have become Uber or Lyft drivers this process took less than one week after which they received a “welcome manual” with an Uber or Lyft sticker to place in the required area of their car.
Before becoming an Uber or Lyft driver, the applicant is not subjected to any professional training pertaining to driving long hours, transporting passengers, or giving professional customer service. Therefore, it is evident that such laxed requirements, although not always, certainly in many instances contribute to many Uber and Lyft accidents.
Nature of Work
Uber and Lyft drivers only get paid if they transport passengers. The amount of money they get paid is based on the number of passengers they transport, the distance they transport the passengers, and the time it takes them to transport the passengers. In other words, if an Uber or Lyft driver is not transporting passengers, they are not getting paid. This incentivizes Uber and Lyft driver’s to take on as many passengers as they can, for the longest distances and longest time, since that is the only way they will make money. Such nature of work is likely to make Uber and Lyft drivers focus more on increasing the number of passengers during a working day than safety. This is not always the case, but is certainly a contributing factor.
Number of Uber and Lyft Drivers
There are 209,000 Uber drivers riding the streets of California. This number of drivers is inevitable to increase the number of accidents on the streets of Los Angeles and the entire state of California.
Common Harm in Ride-share Collisions
Ride-share accidents can lead to a range of injuries, some of which are quite common due to the nature of these incidents. These injuries may include:
Whiplash: One of the most frequent injuries in ride-share accidents, whiplash occurs when the head and neck are suddenly jerked forward and then backward, often due to a rear-end collision. It can result in neck pain, stiffness, and headaches.
Soft Tissue Injuries: These encompass a variety of injuries to muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Strains and sprains can cause pain and limited mobility in affected areas.
Back Injuries: Ride-share accidents can cause back injuries, including herniated discs or vertebral fractures. These injuries can result in chronic pain and require extensive medical treatment.
Head Injuries: Head trauma, including concussions, can occur if a passenger hits their head on the dashboard, window, or other surfaces during a collision. Symptoms may range from mild to severe.
Broken Bones: Fractures of the arms, legs, ribs, or other bones can happen in high-impact rideshare accidents, leading to pain, immobility, and the need for medical intervention.
Cuts and Bruises: Passengers and drivers can sustain cuts and bruises from broken glass, deployed airbags, or impact with interior car surfaces.
Emotional Distress: In addition to physical injuries, passengers and drivers may also experience emotional trauma, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, or depression, following a traumatic accident.
It’s essential for individuals involved in ride-share accidents like Uber and Lyft to seek immediate medical attention, even if injuries seem minor initially. Some injuries may not manifest symptoms immediately but can worsen over time. Moreover, documenting injuries and seeking prompt medical care is crucial for any potential insurance claims or legal actions.
If you’ve been injured in an Uber accident, consulting with an Uber accident lawyer Los Angeles who specializes in such cases can help you navigate the legal process and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries and related expenses.
Recommended Course of Action After an Uber Accident
Seek Medical Care: Even if you don’t feel injured immediately, consider seeing a doctor for a medical evaluation. Some injuries may have delayed symptoms, and a medical report can be essential for insurance claims.
Contact the Authorities: Regardless of the severity of the accident, contact the local police or law enforcement to report the incident. This will create an official record of the accident.
Consult an Attorney: If you sustained injuries or significant damages, the first thing you have to do after calling the local police is consulting a Los Angeles Uber accident attorney experienced in ride-share accidents. Bojat Law Group can provide legal guidance and help you navigate the claims process.
Document the Scene: Take photos or videos of the accident scene, including the vehicles involved, damage, and any relevant road conditions. This documentation can be valuable later.
Speak with Witnesses: If there are any witnesses to the accident, obtain their contact information. Their statements may be crucial for insurance claims or legal proceedings.
Keep Records: Maintain records of all communication related to the accident, including correspondence with the ride-share company, insurance companies, medical bills, and any expenses incurred due to the accident.
Be Cautious with Statements: Avoid making detailed statements about the accident before speaking to your attorney. Anything you say could be used against you later.
Remember that each ride-share accident is unique, and the specific steps you need to take may vary based on the circumstances. Consulting with an Uber accident attorney in Los Angeles is mandatory, especially if you’re facing significant injuries or disputes with insurance companies.
Who is Liable for the Uber and Lyft Accident?
Liability for Uber and Lyft accidents is similar if not the same as any other motor vehicle accident. In other words, whoever causes the accident will be held liable. The difference in Uber and Lyft Accidents is that Uber and Lyft insurance companies will pay for damages if the Uber or Lyft driver caused the accident during the course and scope of their work. If the accident was not caused during the course and scope of work, then Uber or Lyft driver’s personal insurance will step in and cover the damages, in which case this becomes an ordinary motor vehicle accident claim. Let’s dive deeper into the potential factors that could be the reason for liability:
Uber driver’s negligence: If the Uber driver’s negligence or actions contributed to the accident, they could be held liable. This may include situations where the driver was speeding, running a red light, or driving recklessly.
Other drivers: Liability may also fall on other drivers involved in the accident if their actions, such as running a stop sign or driving while intoxicated, were a contributing factor.
Uber: Uber itself may share liability if it’s determined that their driver was unfit to drive (e.g., lacked proper insurance or was not properly screened). Also, if the Uber vehicle defects played a role in the accident, the manufacturer or maintenance provider could be liable.
Road Conditions: If the accident was caused by poor road conditions or inadequate signage, the entity responsible for road maintenance or design may be held liable.
Determining liability in an Uber accident often involves a thorough investigation, gathering evidence, and assessing the actions and responsibilities of all parties involved. That is why it’s of high importance to consult with an experienced Los Angeles uber accident lawyer who can help you navigate the legal complexities and determine the liable parties based on the specifics of your case. If you have been involved in such a case, Bojat Law Group is at your disposal for legal help.
Who Will Pay for Damages in an Uber or Lyft Accident?
In the event of an accident involving an Uber or Lyft, the responsibility for covering damages primarily falls on the party deemed at fault and, by extension, their respective insurance provider. Specifically, when an accident occurs while an Uber or Lyft driver is actively engaged in their ride-share duties, such as transporting passengers or en route to pick up passengers, it is considered within the “course and scope of business.” Under such circumstances, the insurance company that provides coverage for the Uber or Lyft driver will typically step in to compensate the injured parties for their damages. This coverage is crucial in ensuring that medical expenses, property damage, and other losses resulting from the accident are adequately addressed.
It’s worth noting that Uber and Lyft have insurance policies in place that are designed to provide coverage in these situations. These policies often include liability coverage, which can extend to cover injuries and damages to passengers, other drivers, pedestrians, and property affected by the accident. While this general guideline applies to most cases, the specifics can vary based on the nature of the accident, state regulations, and the insurance policies involved. Consult with an experienced Uber accident lawyer in Los Angeles who will ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive the appropriate compensation for your injuries and losses.
Do I need an Uber or Lyft Accident Lawyer?
After an Uber or Lyft accident, it’s a wise decision to seek the guidance of an experienced attorney who specializes in handling such cases. At Bojat Law Group, APC, we offer dedicated and thorough legal representation that is vital for achieving a favorable settlement or verdict for your unique situation. Whether you were a passenger, driver, or pedestrian in an Uber or Lyft accident, or if you were struck by an Uber or Lyft driver, our team is here to assist you in securing compensation for your damages. Our reputation in the field of ride-sharing transportation cases speaks volumes about our commitment to our clients.
Dealing with the complicated policies and laws related to ride-sharing transportation can be daunting, but we have the expertise to guide you through it. We’re dedicated to ensuring that you receive the compensation you rightfully deserve while providing you with the representation that prioritizes your interests. When you choose Bojat Law Group, APC, you’re choosing a team that understands the complexity of Uber and Lyft accident cases. We’re here to help you through every step of the legal process, from gathering evidence to negotiating with insurance companies, all with the goal of securing the best possible outcome for your case. Having a personal injury attorney experienced in Uber and Lyft accidents by your side can make a significant difference in the outcome of your claim. It ensures that your rights are protected, your losses are properly assessed, and you receive the compensation you need to move forward after such an unfortunate event.