Florida Ridesharing Accidents

Florida Ridesharing Accidents

Uber Accident Attorney for
Fort Lauderdale, FL

Despite the convenience and popularity of rideshare services, such as Uber and Lyft, horror stories abound. Accidents happen and someone must take responsibility for them. Victims of these drivers have medical and rehabilitation bills to pay. Many lose income. Some never recover. Others do not survive. Victims are many, from passengers themselves to other motorists, cyclists, bikers, and even pedestrians.

Uber, Lyft, Sidecar, and other rideshare services are shaping the future of Florida’s transport industry. Their success is unmatched. For commuters, rideshare companies offer an affordable and convenient way to travel, but using them can be somewhat risky. Their business model is unique and largely unregulated. If injured in a rideshare wreck, expect every excuse from them not to pay you.

Legal Protection for Rideshare Victims

In Florida, negligent drivers are liable for injuries and fatalities they cause others. In the case of transport services, companies are responsible. However, rideshare companies are largely underinsured, which is why most victims use their own insurance coverage to pay for medical bills, lost wages, loss of income, and other damages. This is extremely unfair, however, and lawmakers are drafting laws to change it.

When you use a taxi in Florida, you know that a fully insured company is employing the driver. Uber and Lyft, on the other hand, employ drivers as independent contractors. It is the driver’s responsibility to provide both the car and liability coverage under their personal insurance plans. While this does lower costs for rideshare companies, it does not provide much protection for their victims.

According to the Florida Senate, House Bill 221 made it law for rideshare drivers to have Personal Injury Protection coverage from July 1, 2017. Any rideshare company using uninsured drivers and vehicles will be liable under law to pay full compensation to victims involved in accidents with any of them. Injured victims and grieving families have a legal avenue to sue for damages, but this may not be enough.

Common Excuses From Rideshare Companies Not to Pay Victims

Even with this legal protection, rideshare victims face an uphill battle getting any money from these companies. They are using every loophole in this still-young market to avoid paying compensation. Unfortunately, those claiming per se, or without the help of a lawyer, are vulnerable to this exploitation. If injured by a negligent Lyft, Uber, or Sidecar driver, do not settle for any of these excuses:

Ridesharing Not in Driver’s Insurance Coverage

Personal auto insurance does not cover accidents where policyholders drive for profit. Providers are explicit about this in their terms of service, and rideshare companies will take full advantage of it. If they permit drivers to use personal coverage, it may not cover your ride.

Use Your Own Insurance

This is the most common expectation rideshare companies have of wreck victims. If the driver’s coverage does not include rideshare or other “for profit” accidents, then using your own insurance company may seem logical, but this is not even an option for those with minimal or no insurance.

Additional Coverage Does Not Include You

Allegations of rideshare companies being underinsured are widespread. Several claim to offer supplementary coverage of up to $1 million if the driver’s insurance is insufficient. However, these policies often exclude certain basics, including your medical bills and underinsured motorists.

Driver Not Working at Time of Crash

Rideshare companies often deny liability by claiming the driver was between fares, which means that he or she was not carrying any passengers at the time of the accident. After much public outcry about this, Uber accepted liability for these scenarios, but there is no guarantee other rideshare companies will.

Role of a Rideshare Accident Lawyer in Florida

Negligent drivers and rideshare companies they work for will do everything possible to avoid paying compensation to victims of their recklessness. Any transport service that you pay for has a duty to protect you from injury and death. If they violate that duty, the law demands that company pay your damages. If it refuses or tries to negotiate an unfair settlement, a personal injury lawyer can help.

You do not have to pay for somebody else’s mistake. With mounting medical bills, painful recovery, and extreme stress to deal with, rideshare accident victims and their families should not have to face exploitative insurance and rideshare companies, as well. You do not need excuses that allow them to avoid liability and get away with hurting you or a loved one, leaving you with crippling debt.

A personal injury attorney protects you from legal trickery and can negotiate the maximum settlement possible. You have the right to full compensation that covers all of your damages, including hospital bills, rehabilitation expenses, lost income, and other costs associated with your injuries. An experienced attorney will fight on your behalf so you can focus on recovery. Call us today for a free consultation.