Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare companies can be a convenient way to travel around cities. However, like all other vehicles on the road, rideshare vehicles are operated by drivers. This means they are prone to getting into an accident.
A study by Rice University and the University of Chicago, using National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, concluded that the presence of Uber and Lyft has actually increased injuries and fatalities on the roads. That’s because rideshare companies put more vehicles on the road driving more miles than would otherwise be the case.
If you were injured in an accident involving a Lyft or Uber vehicle, whether you were a rideshare passenger or were in another vehicle that was struck by an Uber or Lyft, you may have the right to compensation.
Contact Brooks Law Group now to schedule a free case evaluation with an Uber and Lyft accident lawyer and learn more about your legal options.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for an Uber or Lyft Accident in Tampa?
Were you involved in an accident because of an Uber or Lyft, or other rideshare vehicle? Then you are typically looking to one or two entities to hold financially responsible for your injuries and losses: the driver of the rideshare vehicle and the rideshare company.
When a rideshare vehicle causes an accident, the driver is usually legally responsible for any injuries or damage caused by the accident. Victims generally may look only to the driver if the accident occurs when the driver is not logged into the rideshare app.
If an at-fault driver is logged into the rideshare app, victims of an accident caused by a rideshare vehicle may also hold the rideshare company financially responsible. The extent of the rideshare company’s liability may depend on whether
- the driver was transporting a passenger
- or on the way to pick up passengers
when the accident occurred.
Whether you are entitled to hold both the driver and the rideshare company responsible for the accident also determines what insurance coverage may be available. If you can hold only the driver responsible for the accident, you must look to the driver’s own personal or commercial auto insurance policy.
However, if you can hold the rideshare company responsible, you may also look to the insurance coverage that the rideshare company provides its drivers. The amount of this coverage can vary depending on whether
- the driver is driving to pick up
- or currently transporting passengers
when the accident occurs.
Types of Compensation Available After a Rideshare Accident
If you are involved in an accident with a rideshare vehicle, you may be able to claim certain kinds of compensation. For personal injuries, compensation typically falls into two categories – economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are intended to compensate an accident victim for expenses they incur as a result of their injuries. One can typically calculate them easily by using bills, invoices, pay stubs, and so forth. Economic damages generally include:
- Medical expenses – Medical expenses include
- hospital stays
- doctor’s office visits
- physical therapy
- prescription medication
- durable medical equipment such as crutches or walkers
- and can even include modifications to your home to accommodate permanent disabilities caused by your injuries.
- Lost income – If the injuries you suffer from an Uber or Lyft accident cause you to miss work and lose out on wages and income, you may be entitled to compensation for that lost income. Furthermore, if your injuries permanently prevent you from returning to your old work, you may be able to claim the difference in your pre-accident and post-accident wages or income.
Non-economic damages compensate an injured rideshare accident victim for physical and emotional anguish and distress caused by their injuries, such as:
- Pain and suffering – These damages will compensate you for the physical and emotional distress caused by your injuries and for any inability to perform daily tasks or participate in activities you previously enjoyed.
- Loss of consortium – This compensates your family for the loss of your
- and services
as a result of your injuries.
In addition to personal injury compensation, if you have any property that is damaged in your rideshare accident, you may be able to claim the cost to repair or replace that property.
If your loved one is killed in an accident caused by a rideshare vehicle, your family may be entitled to claim wrongful death damages. These provide compensation for the deceased victim’s conscious pain and suffering prior to their death, the deceased’s funeral and burial expenses, the loss of the deceased’s economic contribution to the family, and the loss of the deceased’s society, companionship, and household services to the family.
What to Do if You are Injured in an Uber or Lyft in Tampa
If you are injured in a car accident in Tampa involving a Uber or Lyft, or other rideshare vehicle, there are a few steps you can take to protect your rights and put yourself in the best position for full compensation for your injuries and losses:
- Seek medical attention. Your health is your top priority after a crash. You might not believe you need emergency treatment. However, you should still get a thorough exam as soon as possible after the accident. Some potentially serious injuries do not show immediate symptoms but could be life-threatening without treatment.
- Contact the police. The police can investigate the accident. Their report may provide critical information for establishing which parties were at fault for the accident.
- Take down the driver’s and any eyewitnesses’ contact information. You should obtain the driver’s contact information and especially their insurance information. Were there eyewitnesses to the accident? Then you should obtain their contact information in case you need to take a statement from them later.
- Take photographs. If you are physically capable, try to take photographs of the accident scene, capturing
- the positions of vehicles after the accident
- damage to the vehicles and nearby objects
- skid marks
- traffic controls
- and lighting and weather conditions.
- Talk to an attorney. Most importantly, you should contact a Tampa Uber and Lyft accident lawyer as soon as practical. They can begin the process of pursuing your claim for compensation for your injuries and damages.
How Can an Uber and Lyft Accident Lawyer in Tampa Help Me?
Have you been injured in an accident involving an Uber or Lyft in the Tampa area? Then you need a dedicated and experienced attorney who can help you seek the compensation you deserve. A Tampa Uber/Lyft accident lawyer can help you by investigating the circumstances of your accident. They will determine whether the driver alone or both the driver and the rideshare company are financially responsible to you. This also includes the question of what kinds of insurance coverage may be available.
An attorney can also calculate the full extent of your losses and put together a strong case on your behalf.
An Uber and Lyft accident lawyer in Tampa, FL, can then negotiate with the insurance companies to seek a fair settlement. If that is not possible, a Tampa Uber accident attorney can persuasively argue on your behalf in court to pursue a verdict in your favor.
If you’ve suffered injuries caused by a rideshare vehicle, you may have legal rights and options. Contact Brooks Law Group today for a free consultation.