Taxi transportation is ideal for a trip to the airport, reliable transport to work and one of the best ways to navigate an unfamiliar city. In general, a taxi ride is considered safe, in fact, taxi accidents do not occur as often as passenger vehicle accidents. But, being involved in an accident as a taxicab passenger is almost always more dangerous for many different reasons. Factors like driver fatigue, passengers who don’t wear their seatbelts and the partition found in most taxis can contribute to more severe auto accident injuries.
If you have been injured in a taxicab accident as a passenger, pedestrian or have been hit by a taxi in your vehicle, you need to understand your rights, the statute of limitations for legal action and the liability of the taxi driver and company. You need proper legal representation from an experienced auto accident attorney with extensive knowledge of California taxi accidents. The advocates at Johnson Attorneys Group have the resources to help you win or successfully settle your case. Call today for a free case review (800) 208-3538.
California Common Carrier Laws
The classification of a common carrier in California is an established entity or corporation that promotes itself as a transportation-based company with the purpose of transporting individuals or goods from one location to another with a set standard of fees. Common Carriers include taxi cabs, bus lines (both public and private), railroads, cruise ships, freight companies, escalators, and elevators. In tort law, common carriers have a legal obligation called ‘Duty of Care’ that requires an elevated standard of reasonable care and prevention of foreseeable harm for their passengers.
Rideshare Liability in California
Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft are not regulated under the California Common Carrier Laws. These companies fall under a category called a Transportation Network Company (TNC). Identified as a company that provides pre-arranged transportation for compensation through an online-enabled platform to connect users with drivers utilizing their own personal vehicles. Unlike taxi cab drivers, TNC drivers are not held to the ‘higher standard of care’ for their passengers. TNCs are, however, required to adhere to 28 rules and regulations set by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) including the requirement to carry commercial liability insurance.
What Are My Rights as a Taxi Cab Passenger Involved in an Accident?
Because a taxi driver is obligated by law to operate under the highest degree of care and safety, they can be held legally responsible for any injuries or damage caused because of their negligence. Some common negligent behavior that cause taxi accidents are:
- Driver Fatigue
- Aggressive Driving
- Driving in Excess of the posted Speed Limit
- Careless or Dangerous Driving in Traffic
- Unsafe Lane Changes
- Failure to Obey Yield Signs, Stop Signs, and Traffic Lights
- Driving While Intoxicated or Under the Influence of Drugs
If you or someone you love has been the victim in a taxi accident, immediately call the police to report the accident and contact an experienced taxi accident lawyer before speaking to the taxi company’s insurance representatives to safeguard your legal rights and ensure you get the maximum compensation for the following:
- Medical Expenses including Rehabilitation
- Future Medical Expenses and Cost of Life Care
- Loss Wages and Future Loss or Income Reduction
- Pain and Suffering
- Funeral Expenses
- Loss of Consortium (damages suffered by a spouse or family member)
- Punitive Damage (if the defendant displayed an intent to harm or disregard safety)
The Statute of Limitations
You have 2 years from the date of the taxi-involved accident to file your personal injury cause of action against the at-fault taxi driver and/or taxicab company.
California civil courts will allow a halting of the statute of limitation in some circumstances like:
- Victim’s Incapacitation – either physical or mental.
- A Victim’s Minor Status – until the injured person turns 18 years old.
- A Delayed Injury – an injury that was not immediately apparent after the accident.
You Need an Experienced Taxi Accident Victims Advocate To Protect Your Rights
If you are dealing with injuries resulting from a being struck by a taxi cab as a pedestrian or as a passenger involved in a taxi cab collision, it is very important to take action and contact an experienced, qualified auto accident injury attorney to deal with law enforcement, insurance companies and other parties of interest so you can begin healing and the process of moving forward. Call Johnson Attorneys Group at 1-800-208-3538 for a free case review. Learn more about clients we’ve helped by viewing our case results.