Picture this scene: You’re out at the bar. You’ve had too much to drink. And, there’s no designated driver to take you home. Let’s complicate things and say you also live in a rural area without a reliable taxi service.
Twenty years ago, this would have posed a major problem. But, today the situation can be remedied with a simple app. Just whip out your phone and use one of several popular ridesharing apps to summon a Uber or Lyft driver to your location.
Pretty nifty, right?
There’s no doubt that rideshare apps have worked wonders to reduce the number of drunk drivers on the road. And, in today’s modern world, you actually have tons of options when it comes to getting home—no matter your location or situation.
But, of course, everything comes with its downsides. After all, whenever you step into a vehicle—whether you’re the driver or the passenger—you put yourself at risk for being involved in an accident. With rideshare apps, in particular, you never know who’s going to be behind the wheel. Essentially, you must place all your faith into a complete stranger. Sad to say, it really isn’t that hard to become a driver for Uber or Lyft. In fact, pretty much anyone can do it.
Legally speaking, rideshare accidents are nasty business. As with any other accident, you must determine who is at fault. But, now you have the added pleasure of contending with both Uber’s and Lyft’s driver insurance policies. Simply put, you’re going to need to tackle this problem with an experienced team of lawyers behind you every step of the way.
Why The Ward Law Group is Right For You
If you have been involved in any kind of accident, you’re very likely under a fair amount of stress. Many thoughts will race through your mind—as they well should. That’s normal.
How do you set up a claim with your insurance company? What are your state laws for at-fault motor operators? How long do you have to take your case to court? Among many other questions.
All of these are fair questions that you should be asking. Simply put, you can’t do this alone. Having a good team of attorneys behind you is paramount to securing the maximum possible settlement from your case.
If you take away anything from this article it should be this: Insurance company adjusters will do everything in their power to make sure that your compensation is minimized.
These people are highly skilled, articulate, and very clever.
Fortunately, you have an inside.
Our founder, Gregory Ward, once represented insurance companies in the very battle you are now waging. As such, he knows all the tricks of the opposing team’s trade.
Finding insurance work unfulfilling, Gergory realized he would rather be applying his skills to benefit his community. This makes The Ward Law Group a particularly formidable foe as far as insurance companies are concerned. With our lawyers in your corner, you can rest assured your case lies in capable hands.
State Laws: Ridesharing Accidents and You
Before we continue, you should be aware that Florida’s statute of limitations is two years from the date of your accident. Simply put, you must present your case within that period of time or risk a judge dismissing your case.
Needless to say, Florida car accident laws are complicated enough as it is, let alone adding the complication of a ridesharing collision.
First and foremost, Florida is a no-fault state, which means that each person’s insurance company must pay for the expenses of the accident. Each Florida resident must hold an auto policy with $10,000 for personal injury protection and $10,000 for property damage liability. In this case, personal injury protection safeguards the victim from relevant costs such as personal injury and lost wages.
Of course, there are also some instances in which the cost of a victim’s injuries will exceed these amounts. In such cases, you may be able to sue the offending party for additional compensation (but only if certain prerequisites are met).
Rideshare accidents in Florida are a little odd, however. If your Uber or Lyft operator was not responsible for the accident, then all of the above rules apply as normal. If, however, your driver was at fault for the accident, then you have to turn to the ridesharing company’s insurance policy—not the driver’s.
Uber and Lyft hold a $1 million insurance policy that covers any financial losses for their passengers. So, if your driver is at fault, in most cases, this will cover your expenses. Just be aware, however, that you will have to deal with Uber or Lyft when it comes to recouping any damages.
Ridesharing Accident Statistics: Are Uber and Lyft Making Things Worse?
Research suggests that ridesharing accidents increase the number of auto accidents in any area by 2-3%. Since the advent of ridesharing, there has been a year-to-year percentage increase in automobile accidents across the country. This includes a 2-3% increase in auto accident fatalities, which equates to approximately 1,100 additional deaths.
What exactly does all of this mean? Well, we don’t know for sure yet. There’s no telling if this is just a short-term trend or a developing pattern. Only time will tell. The most likely reason for the jump in accidents? Increased congestion. While ridesharing services decrease the number of drunk drivers on the road, they also increase the number of overall drivers. This often translates to more accidents.
Contact The Ward Law Group Today!
Have you been involved in a ridesharing accident recently? Are you still looking for legal representation? If so, then you should consider contacting our offices at (855) DOLOR-55. Our lawyers are passionate about securing the highest possible settlement for your case. Additionally, we faithfully serve both the English- and Spanish-speaking communities. For legal advice that you can trust, contact The Ward Law Group today!