Being involved in any type of accident can be traumatizing. However, an accident with a rideshare vehicle, such as an Uber or Lyft, carries a particular set of challenges. If you have been injured in a rideshare accident, you need professional counsel to get the compensation you may be entitled to.
Uber and Lyft Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys Serving Spring Hill
Seeking compensation for rideshare accidents requires specific knowledge of continually changing rules, laws, and regulations. That is why you need someone who understands what you need to do. When you try seeking compensation on your own, you risk having to pay your own hospital bills or getting a lot less in insurance payouts than you deserve. With Whittel & Melton, you can feel confident that we will do everything we can to get you the payout you deserve.
Our main office is in Spring Hill, Florida. We serve Florida residents across much of the state, including the greater Tampa area and Miami.
Grounds for Seeking Uber or Lyft Accident Claims in Spring Hill, Florida
Rideshare accidents in Florida are becoming more frequent. Here are some of the most common questions and issues surrounding rideshare accident claims.
Who Is Responsible for a Lyft or Uber Accident? Because Florida is a no-fault state, all Florida drivers are required to carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. If you are in a rideshare accident, Florida laws require that you use your insurance first.
PIP insurance provides up to $10,000 for medical and other accident-related expenses. To qualify for PIP insurance coverage after a Lyft or Uber accident, you must get medical attention within 14 days.
If your injuries exceed your insurance coverage, in some cases, you can file a claim with the rideshare driver or the rideshare company. If your claim is denied, you may have the option to sue the driver.
Florida laws require the injured party to have sustained severe injuries to pursue the lawsuit option. Only some injuries are considered severe:
Extensive limitations on bodily systems or functions
Permanent injury to a body part
Extended disability for three months or more
Permanent or significant disfigurement
Pursuing a lawsuit against a rideshare company like Uber or Lyft is more complicated. This is because rideshare drivers are independent contractors and are not considered official employees. This typically releases the company from liability. However, there are strict requirements for becoming a rideshare driver in Florida. If Uber or Lyft hires someone who does not fulfill those requirements, they can be held responsible for negligent hiring.
In Florida, the requirements to become an Uber driver include the following:
A Social Security number
21 years or older
Access to a 4-door vehicle that is 10 years old or newer
A licensed driver for at least 1 year, or at least 3 years if under 23
Pass a background and driving record check
Hold an in-state license, registration, and car insurance policy under their name
How Much is a Lyft or Uber Settlement? The settlement amount for an Uber or Lyft accident will depend on how the driver was interacting with the rideshare app at the time of the incident.
The Rideshare App was turned ON, and the Driver Was Transporting a Passenger or on the Way to Pick Them Up: In this situation, the company’s commercial insurance would apply. Coverage typically includes up to $1 million in third-party liability and up to $250 million in coverage for uninsured/underinsured motorists.
The Rideshare App Was Turned ON, and The Driver Was Waiting to Be Booked: With this scenario, the driver’s personal liability insurance along with the company’s contingent liability coverage would apply. The contingent liability coverage includes $50,000 per person for bodily injury and property damage up to $25,000.
The Rideshare App Was Turned OFF: Only the driver’s personal auto insurance would apply in this scenario.
Potential Roadblocks Even in situations where you think you deserve compensation, there are a few roadblocks that can make filing a lawsuit difficult in a rideshare accident.
If the driver has not officially accepted a ride, the company’s commercial insurance coverage will not apply. You will only have access to the driver’s personal insurance.
In Florida, rideshare drivers for Uber and Lyft are considered independent contractors. This makes it difficult and rare for the parent company to be held liable for accidents.
When an Uber or Lyft driver gets into an accident while not logged in to the app, their personal insurance may still deny a payout because they will claim they were driving commercially.
Hiring one of our experienced rideshare accident lawyers in Spring Hill can help you overcome some of the challenges most insurance companies will throw at you.
What Do You Do If You’ve Been Injured in a Lyft or Uber Crash in Florida?
Just like other types of accidents, there are certain things you should and should not do if you are involved in an Uber or Lyft accident in Florida. Here are critical steps you should take if you’ve been in a rideshare accident:
Call 911 immediately: Put the safety of yourself and others first. Call law enforcement right away to request assistance and, if needed, an ambulance.
Get medical attention: To ensure you receive your fair compensation, make sure you get medical attention as quickly as possible, even if you don’t feel hurt. Some injuries may take longer to manifest. However, if you wait too long, you might not be eligible for damages later. Prompt medical care also documents any injuries you sustained.
Report the accident to your insurance: You need to contact your insurance soon after the accident. However, we recommend speaking with one of our experienced car accident lawyers before giving your insurance your statement.
Document everything: A smartphone makes it easy to document the accident scene. Take lots of detailed pictures. If you can, take a picture of the rideshare driver’s license, insurance card, and contact information. Get the contact details for any eyewitnesses.
Speak with law enforcement: Provide all necessary details to law enforcement, including who was injured.
Collect evidence: Request a copy of the accident report and collect copies of your relevant medical records.
Take notes: The human brain is notorious for forgetting details, even important ones. Write down as many details as you can about the accident. Includes things like the weather, the time of the accident, road condition, your actions, the other driver’s actions, and anything else, even things that do not seem relevant.
Contact a rideshare accident lawyer in Spring Hill: You need expert legal advice to navigate the complexities of a rideshare accident. Call a specialist at Whittel & Melton as soon as possible so you do not jeopardize your compensation opportunity.
Stay calm: While any accident can be a traumatic event, staying as calm as you can and staying on the scene is crucial.
Don’t sign documents: Before you sign any statements or documents, you should first talk to one of our rideshare accident lawyers in Spring Hill.
Don’t talk to other representatives: Do not talk to the other driver’s insurance representative or lawyer before you talk with your own auto accident lawyer.
Don’t admit fault: Do not say anything that can be mistaken as admitting fault. This includes saying sorry, claiming you didn’t see a stop sign, red light, or other similar statements.
Don’t wait to contact a lawyer: Contact a rideshare car accident attorney at Whittel & Melton as soon as you can. The more time that passes, the more challenging your case will become.
Talk to a Rideshare Accident Lawyer in Spring Hill
Were you injured in an accident by a Lyft or Uber driver in Spring Hill? You need the trustworthy lawyers at Whittel & Melton.
Schedule a free consultation with Whittel & Melton today. We will fight for the compensation you deserve.