Many people rely on Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing ventures to provide convenient transportation. If you sustain injuries in an accident involving a rideshare vehicle, who is responsible for paying your medical expenses or damage to your car? Due to the nature of ridesharing, these claims are more complex than many of those involving private vehicles.

The good news is that you don’t have to handle your challenging claim alone. The skilled lawyers at Johnson Attorneys Group understand how to navigate these claims to maximize your compensation. Contact us today to see how much your case is worth.

How Is Ridesharing Different From Taxis?

Most taxi drivers work for taxi companies as employees, driving company-owned cabs. However, ridesharing drivers use their own cars and are typically independent contractors who offer their services through companies like Lyft and Uber.

Why does that matter?

  • Rideshare drivers may not have clean driving records.
  • They are responsible for their own vehicle maintenance and may not keep their cars in safe driving condition.
  • Uber and Lyft drivers don’t have to follow company restrictions or traffic laws as strictly as professional drivers do.
  • Depending on the driver’s status at the time of an accident, their own insurance company may be responsible for paying compensation.

While you would hope that rideshare drivers are responsible individuals, that’s not always the case.

What About Car Insurance?

In California, laws require licensed drivers to carry these minimum amounts of car insurance coverage for their personal autos:

  • $15,000 for injury or death to one person
  • $30,000 for injury or death to more than one person
  • $5,000 property damage per accident

Insurance companies are particular about drivers who offer ridesharing. They may require drivers to purchase specific policies that cover ridesharing; if the driver doesn’t have this type of insurance and causes an accident, the insurance company may refuse to pay compensation.

Laws also require Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing companies to provide insurance policies; however, they’re only in effect when the drivers are available and waiting for a ride or delivery request, en route to a pickup, or when they’re actively transporting passengers or goods.

Ridesharing Passengers

The Uber or Lyft insurance policies should cover passengers utilizing ridesharing services. However, other vehicles may be responsible for causing an accident that involves the vehicle they’re riding in. Passengers should still receive compensation, but the claim is more complex because you must also include the responsible party’s insurance company.

Your JAG attorney knows what to do regardless of who or what is at fault for your ridesharing accident.

What Causes Ridesharing Accidents?

Ridesharing vehicles are like all others: many factors can cause an accident. Some of the most common are:

  • Driver error
  • Mechanical malfunctions
  • Other vehicles
  • Animals, pedestrians, or cyclists
  • Adverse road or weather conditions
  • Malfunctioning traffic signals

With so many reasons that accidents can occur, each requires an investigation. At times, more than one factor is to blame. Whether you are another car’s occupant, a ridesharing passenger or driver, or a cyclist or pedestrian, JAG can help you obtain the compensation you deserve if you sustain injuries in a ridesharing accident.

What Is Driver Error?

Even experienced drivers can cause accidents, many resulting from negligence and driver error. Typical forms of driver error include:

Most people realize that those actions present a higher risk of causing an accident. They all indicate a form of negligence, which is the basis for most personal injury claims and lawsuits.

Distracted Driving

People use the term “distracted driving” often, but do you know what it means? A distraction is anything that takes a driver’s hands off the steering wheel and their attention away from the act of driving. Distracted drivers typically experience delayed reaction times to emerging traffic hazards, sometimes resulting in accidents.

Common types of distracted driving are:

  • Texting or other hands-on uses of cell phones or other devices
  • Searching or reaching for an object inside the vehicle
  • Smoking, eating, or drinking
  • Daydreaming
  • Talking to or looking at other vehicle occupants
  • Putting on makeup or fixing hair

It’s often challenging to prove that a driver was engaged in any of these activities immediately before causing a collision, but your ridesharing accident lawyer from the Johnson Attorneys Group will thoroughly investigate the crash. We know what kinds of evidence to look for and how to find it.

What Kinds of Compensation Can You Receive?

Even if you share some percentage of responsibility for causing a ridesharing accident, California’s laws allow you to seek compensation for damages from other guilty parties using pure comparative negligence. Passengers typically don’t bear any blame.

Pure comparative negligence means you can attempt to obtain compensation even if you’re 99% responsible for causing an accident. However, you’ll have to deduct your assigned percentage from the total damages.

Economic Damages

Ridesharing accidents can cause injuries and property damage. You’ll likely miss time from work and face medical treatments, resulting in a probable financial strain. Economic damages reimburse you for expenses that directly result from an accident, including:

  • Medical treatment, hospital stays, medications, therapy, and other health-related expenses
  • Lost wages due to time away from work
  • Incidental expenses like childcare and the costs associated with hiring other caregivers
  • Property damage
  • Canceled or disrupted event and vacation costs

You’ll need to keep all invoices, statements, and receipts for these expenses. Your JAG ridesharing accident lawyer will use them to calculate your economic damages.

Non-Economic Damages

Some damages aren’t tangible, but they can cause significant disruptions to your life. Non-economic damages compensate you for things like:

  • Physical, mental, and emotional pain and suffering
  • Diminished earning capacity
  • Damage to important personal relationships
  • Losing the ability to enjoy life
  • Permanent disability or disfigurement
  • PTSD

Some people experience more severe injuries than others, including those that are considered non-economic damages. Accident victims whose lives are severely impacted by a ridesharing accident will likely receive more compensation than those whose injuries are less serious.

Punitive Damages

Not all accidents qualify victims for punitive damages. These may be awarded if the guilty party was extremely reckless, malicious, or intentionally caused the accident. Punitive damages intend to punish the defendant further and deter them from repeating their behavior.

Ask your JAG lawyer if your ridesharing accident qualifies.

Why Should You Hire the Johnson Attorneys Group?

When you select your legal representation after a ridesharing accident, we understand you have several options. The Johnson Attorneys Group stands out from the rest because we have a 98.7% case success rate, which shows that we can successfully handle your claim. We have recovered more than $100 million for our clients, and we’d like to assist you too.

With 12 locations, JAG has an office that’s convenient for you. You won’t have to pay any legal fees until we win compensation for you, beginning with your free consultation. Request your no-obligation case review today. Call us 24/7 at (800) 208-3538, submit our online contact form, or use live chat. A real person is standing by to speak to you about your case.