In California, Uber has an obligation to make sure that all of its rides are covered by insurance. Insurance can be carried by the Uber driver and/or the company itself. The amount of insurance that is required depends on the activity the Uber driver is engaged in at a particular moment in time. A driver’s activity will be classified in one of three periods.
Period 1: The driver is logged into the Uber app but has not accepted a ride request. Minimum insurance requirements during Period 1 include:
Period 2: The driver is logged into the app and has formally accepted a ride request. The minimum insurance requirement for Period 2 is commercial coverage of at least $1 million.
Period 3: The driver has accepted a ride and is currently transporting a passenger. That passenger must have requested the ride through the app before entering the vehicle. Period 3 begins when the passenger enters the car and ends when the passenger leaves. Minimum insurance requirements during Period 3 include:
You have a right to file a claim to recover some of these insurance benefits if you:
There are two ways to pursue compensation after an Uber accident. The first involves filing a claim with an insurance company. The second involves filing a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent party.
Filing an insurance claim can be the quickest and most efficient way to recover compensation after an accident.
Uber: Uber has to make sure that your ride is covered by insurance. If you’re injured as a passenger or because of a negligent Uber driver, you can file a claim to recover benefits from Uber’s $1 million policy.
Uber driver: Your Uber driver must have a valid car insurance policy to drive their own private vehicle. If you are injured by an Uber driver who is not engaged in a commercial purpose, you may be able to recover compensation from their personal policy. However, the driver’s insurance company may deny your claim if you were injured while the driver was engaged in commercial activity. Most personal policies exclude coverage for livery (i.e., driving a vehicle for hire). You’ll be forced to consider filing a claim with Uber’s primary coverage, instead.
Third-party insurance: Uber drivers aren’t always to blame for an accident. Another driver, a bicyclist or even a pedestrian could be responsible for causing an accident. You have the right to file a claim with that third party’s insurance company to recover compensation.
Uninsured motorist coverage: Do you have a car insurance policy? Does that policy contain uninsured motorist coverage? If so, you may be able to recover compensation from your own insurer after an accident. This can help if the Uber driver is not covered or if another company refuses to pay.
You always have the option for filing a personal injury lawsuit if insurance companies won’t cooperate or extend a fair offer. There are several potential parties you could name as defendants in a case.
Your Uber driver: You can file a lawsuit against your Uber driver to recover compensation. You’d most likely base your case on the fact that your Uber driver’s negligence caused your injury. However, it’s important to keep in mind that most Uber drivers are just ordinary people. They may not have the resources to pay if you win your case. It may be better to go after a defendant with deep pockets.
Uber: Whether or not you can hold Uber personally responsible for an accident involving one of its drivers is still undecided in California. For years, Uber has lobbied to have its drivers classified as independent contractors, rather than employees. This is important because employers can be held responsible for the negligent acts of its employees. Uber doesn’t want this liability. The company can deny responsibility if its employees are classified as independent contractors. Since this is still a gray area, you can try to recover compensation from Uber itself.
Companies behind defective products: Defective products frequently contribute to car accidents in Orange County. When this happens, the company that designed, manufactured or sold that product can be held strictly liable for any injuries. If a defective product contributed to your injury, you can file a products liability lawsuit and hold the company behind that product responsible.
Other motorists and pedestrians: Uber drivers don’t operate in a vacuum. Ubers share the road with other cars, motorcycles, trucks and bicycles. At times, Ubers are in close proximity to pedestrians. There will be times when the Uber driver will not be at fault for an accident. You can file a lawsuit against anyone who contributed to your injury.
Our attorneys are prepared to help you maximize your financial award after an Uber accident. We’ll pursue damages on your behalf, including compensation for:
At the Law Offices of John Rapillo, our goal is to help you get the money you deserve after an Uber accident. Call our office today to schedule a free case assessment.
Our attorneys provide straightforward and complete information so you can make informed decisions about how to proceed with your Uber accident claim. You can reach us at 949-675-5060 or online. We provide legal representation on a contingency fee basis so you do not pay legal fees until we win your case.
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