Uber and other companies that offer cheaper alternatives to taking a traditional taxi-cab are getting a lot of business these days. Uber hires private drivers who operate as independent contractors to provide transportation to Uber’s customers. It’s a good deal for everyone.
The customer saves money on the cost of a ride and the driver is able to make some extra money for providing a service. However, Uber drivers are not required to take any additional safety training related to transporting passengers or operating a commercial vehicle. Unfortunately, this lack of training and other factors often results in Uber drivers being involved in injury related accidents.
If you have been injured by an Uber driver, you may be wondering: Can I sue Uber?
The answer to this question can be tricky, but the short answer for California residents is yes. Whether or not you can sue Uber depends upon the facts of the case and the laws of the state in which the accident occurred. Other relevant factors include whether you were a passenger or bystander and whether the accident was the Uber driver’s fault.
Do You Sue Uber or the Driver After The Accident?
Since Uber driver’s are independent contractors, it is difficult to sue Uber directly if one of their driver’s is at fault in an accident that caused injuries to a passenger. In these cases, the injured party would have to file suit against the driver personally to recover compensation for his injuries. However, even though they are independent contractors, Uber drivers are covered under Uber’s $1 million insurance policy for accidents.
Often, Uber drivers are involved in accidents where the other driver is at fault. In a lot of these situations, the driver that caused the accident may not have enough insurance to cover serious injuries. Uber has $1 million of under-insured motorist coverage for these types of cases. However, you should get the help of a personal injury attorney to file the proper legal paperwork and notices to the insurance company when seeking compensation for any passenger related injuries.
This is why it’s essential you hire an experienced ride sharing litigation firm like GJEL Accident Attorneys.
There Are Also, Non-Passenger Injuries
Getting proper compensation for serious injuries to pedestrians, bystanders and other non-passengers because of a negligent Uber driver can be complicated. If the Uber driver is working and carrying a passenger at the time of the accident, then you can file a claim against Uber’s $1 million insurance policy for your injuries. If the Uber driver is not working, you may be limited to the policy amounts stated in the driver’s individual insurance policy. However, state law further complicates the matter.
Some states, such as Washington and California, have ruled that the ride-sharing insurance policies for Uber and similar companies are effective even if there is no passenger in the car at the time of the accident. Basically, in these states, as long as the driver is logged onto the Uber app and waiting for a customer, they are covered under the $1 million insurance policy. Every state has different laws regarding insurance coverage for Uber drivers. You need to carefully review the laws of your state.
Should You Sue After An Accident?
It can be difficult to sue Uber directly for your injuries unless you can prove that Uber was somehow at fault. For example, you may be able to sue Uber directly if they were negligent in hiring a particular driver. In other cases, you need to sue the driver and try to file a claim against Uber’s insurance company to get compensation for your injuries. If you have been involved in an Uber accident, don’t try to handle the matter on your own. It’s too complicated. Talk to a personal injury attorney. GJEL has recovered over $1 Million dollars from their clients who were injured in an Uber accident.