Rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft are gaining in popularity as alternatives to taxi services and buses across the country. Although relatively new to Upstate New York, the ease of using your cell phone to request a ride has been revolutionizing public transportation being offered in big metropolitan areas such as New York City for years.
In most areas, rideshare companies such as Uber are not regulated as heavy as the taxi companies, making a rideshare car accident a very complicated and confusing situation. Since the peer to peer ridesharing is a new industry, understanding who is liable and your rights as an injured passenger are difficult. A rideshare car accident lawyer has the experience to help individuals that have been injured in an accident involving an Uber driver or their vehicle to navigate through this complex situation. If an Uber or Lyft driver hasn’t provided reasonable care for their passengers and a car accident occurs, the injured person may be able to file a lawsuit against the company for negligence.
Ridesharing is simply the modern-day term for a carpool, or a method of transportation in which a passenger travels in a vehicle driven by its owner for a fee. These riders request a rideshare by setting a pick-up and drop-off location via an app such as Uber or Lyft. Rideshare companies are now available to Upstate New York residents and are a popular way to travel around town.
Lawsuits involving rideshare auto accidents can be complicated involving various types of insurance policies that could provide coverage for your personal injury damages.
If You've been injured in aN Lyft OR UBER accident
call brindisi, murad & brindisi Pearlman Today!
Issues With Passenger Security
If you own and operate a taxi service in New York you have a specific rules and regulations to abide by. However, with Uber and Lyft, anyone living in Upstate New York can operate as a driver if they have a valid driver’s license, a vehicle and their own car insurance. These rideshare companies don’t require the following…
By having a relaxed hiring process, rideshare companies may be putting many dangerous and unsafe drivers behind the wheel with previous criminal records or crash histories. Over just a couple of years this has led to…
• Alleged assaults by driver or other passengers
• Alleged sexual assaults and harassment by drivers
• Accidents resulting in serious injuries and property damage
• Wrongful deaths at the hands of drivers
Innocent riders are paying the price. These Uber and Lyft related injuries and/or deaths have been caused by lack of driver attention, driver negligence and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Issues with Insurance After Rideshare Accidents
When using public transportation, such as taking a taxi or bus, you are protected by specific insurance policies purchased by the companies that own these vehicles to cover themselves and the employees they hire to transport passengers. However, when using a rideshare company such as Uber or Lyft, the driver is not considered an employee of the company, rather, they are designated as an “independent contractor”; and, as such, there may be issues as to whether the driver’s own vehicle insurance or the Transportation Network Company (TNC), such as Uber’s or Lyft’s, insurance is available to cover the accident and any injuries resulting therefrom.
Once an Uber or Lyft driver’s app is on, that person is able to receive ride requests. Potential riders would use their Uber app to ask for an idle driver in the area to take them to the destination. During this time, the NYS law insurance requirements for Uber or Lyft are applicable to cover damages in the event of an accident while driving “on the clock” without any passengers in the vehicle.
Once Uber riders request a ride and fill out the required fields for the trip including their current location and final destination, the app will connect drivers with them to get them to their end point. At this time, the rider will receive information about the driver including their name, vehicle type, and license plate number. When the driver is close, the rider will be notified via the app. Once an Uber driver or Lyft driver is assigned a passenger or the passenger has already been picked up, the car is now considered a commercial vehicle. This means NYS laws insurance requirements for Uber’s or Lyft’s commercial insurance policy will apply in the event of a car accident.
New York State law requires TNC’s , such as Uber or Lyft, to provide liability coverage for its drivers, as follows: if you’re driving alone to pick up a passenger the TNC must carry $75,000 per person/$150,000 per accident of Bodily Injury Liability; and $25,000 of Property Damage Liability for damaging another person’s car or other property. However, when you are transporting a passenger, the TNC must carry $1.25 million for both Bodily Injury and Property Damage Liability.
In New York State, your personal auto insurance policy will not cover accidents while driving for Uber or Lyft. NYS insurance policies have a list of exclusions and “driving-for-hire” is on that list. As such, from the time the driver turns on the ride-sharing app to the time they turn it off, there is no coverage under their personal auto policy for liability or physical damage to their car.
As such, if the app is turned off, a driver is considered to be “off the clock” and will not be receiving any requests for rides. At this time, there is no insurance coverage from the TNC since you are not driving on the Uber or Lyft platform during this period; and, as such, you are not covered by the TNC’s insurance policy for driver-partners. Any accidents that occur in a car while not driving with Uber or Lyft should be covered by the driver’s own personal automobile insurance coverage that they purchased on their own.
At Brindisi, Murad & Brindisi Pearlman we are experienced personal injury lawyers that have the knowledge to guide you through a rideshare accident lawsuit if you are seriously injured while using a rideshare company and one of the following occurs…
• Injured in a car accident involving an Uber or Lyft driver
• A pedestrian injured by an Uber or Lyft driver
• Assaulted by an Uber or Lyft driver or passenger
It is the responsibility of rideshare companies and their drivers to provide a safe environment for their passengers, drivers, other commuters, and pedestrians. Companies such as Uber and Lyft have the responsibility to provide adequate warnings and safety measures if there are risks associated with rideshare drivers and the vehicles they drive. The rideshare company could be held liable in a car accident lawsuit for injuries sustained if a rideshare driver fails to fulfill that duty.
A personal injury lawyer with experience in rideshare car accidents can help guide people injured through the process.
People injured in Upstate New York may be eligible to recover money to pay for:
• Medical expenses
• Lost wages
• Pain and suffering
They can also help families that have suffered a loss from a loved one who has died in a rideshare car accident. They may be entitled to receive a settlement to cover funeral expenses as well as compensation for the pain and suffering associated with losing a loved one.
FREE CASE EVALUATION
CONTACT US TODAY
ABSOLUTELY NO COST TO YOU
UNLESS WE WIN. CALL NOW!
UTICA OFFICE | 2713 Genesee St, Utica, NY 13501
Monday 9AM - 5PM
Tuesday 9AM - 5PM
Wednesday 9AM - 5PM
Thursday 9AM - 5PM
Friday 9AM - 5PM
2713 Genesee Street, Utica NY 13501
The Personal Injury Lawyers at Brindisi, Murad & Brindisi Pearlman provide representation throughout Central New York and Upstate New York, including such areas as Utica, Syracuse, Watertown, Binghamton, Albany, Rome, Herkimer, Rochester, Cortland, Oneida and Ithaca.
Disclaimer: Prior results cannot and do not guarantee or predict a similar outcome with respect to any future matter, including yours, in which a lawyer or law firm may be retained. The images or information found on this website is not intended as legal advice. For any legal questions, please consult with an attorney. Use of and access to this website or any e-mail links contained within the site does not create an attorney-client relationship between Brindisi, Murad & Brindisi Pearlman, LLP and the user or browser. The dissemination of this webpage is considered "Attorney Advertising" (Statement Pursuant to NYCRR Part 1200 Rules of Professional Conduct (Rule 7.1) effective April 1, 2009.)
2015 Brindisi, Murad & Brindisi Pearlman | All Rights Reserved | Designed By The Marketing Firm, Inc.