Ride-sharing companies, like Uber and Lyft, certainly make transportation easier and more economical than the traditional taxis and limos. But with the proliferation of these “pay to play” vehicles comes the risk of accidental injuries to passengers and other people. When this happens, who’s responsible for your injuries? Do you have a claim against the driver, against the company they work for, or against the other driver involved in the accident?
Background Information on Uber, Lyft, and Other Ride-Sharing Services
In legal terms, these companies are referred to as “Transportation Network Companies”, or TNC’s. They are defined as companies which provide digital services, allowing their drivers to connect with potential riders through an app (the most popular ones being Uber and Lyft). The TNC’s do not own the vehicles being used, nor do they employ the drivers. They simply provide a means of connection, billing, and providing digital receipts.
However, even though they do not employ the drivers, they are required to carry liability insurance in certain amounts to provide coverage in the event the driver is in any way negligent in causing the crash. Not only that, but they are required to carry uninsured motorist coverage in accordance with Florida’s insurance statutes. This is especially important, since Florida has one of the highest rates of uninsured motorists.
The drivers are likewise required to be insured for liability and uninsured motorist coverage, but if they do not carry the required insurance the TNC’s policy applies from “dollar one.”
How Do Florida Laws Protect You in an Uber or Lyft Accident?
If you are a passenger in a ride-sharing car or are the driver or passenger in another vehicle, or even a pedestrian or bicyclist injured by the negligence of the Uber or Lyft driver, you have a source of insurance from which to collect your damages. If the TNC vehicle is en route to pick up a passenger or has a passenger, there is a minimum bodily injury liability policy in effect with $1 million dollars in coverage. If the driver is connected to the digital network but not en route to pick up a rider or does not have a rider on board, then there is a minimum bodily injury policy of $50,000 per person and $100,000 per incident. In addition, you have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage available, which covers 80% of medical expenses and 60% of lost wages (up to a limit of $10,000), regardless of who was at fault for the accident.
Even if the driver of the ride-sharing vehicle isn’t at fault, if you are a passenger in the vehicle, there is likely uninsured motorist coverage available to compensate you if the at-fault driver does not carry enough liability insurance.
Call Us to Discuss Your Case
At Laporte, Mulligan & Werner-Watkins, PA we represent those injured in accidents involving Uber or Lyft. If you are hurt in an accident involving any ride-sharing company, call us or connect with us on our website. We can help you receive the compensation you deserve. We never charge for an initial consultation, and if we take your claim, there are no fees or costs unless you win your case.
Disclaimer: This blog is intended to be for informational purposes only and does not establish an attorney/client relationship.