Uber and Lyft rideshare services have become part of our everyday lives. Drivers from each company flood the streets of not only Bucks County but many other counties and cities across the country. However, with the spread of rideshare companies has also come the issue of liability for car accidents caused by drivers of these companies. If you were injured in an Uber or Lyft accident, you should consult with an experienced Bucks County Uber and Lyft accident injury lawyer.
The Reiff Law Firm’s personal injury attorneys in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, possess decades of combined legal experience, and we can help you fight for compensation in your injury claim. To schedule a free case evaluation, contact the Reiff Law Firm at (215) 709-6940. You may also contact us online using our short submission form.
Common Causes of Uber and Lyft Accidents in Bucks County
Uber and Lyft accidents may happen under a variety of circumstances. If an Uber or Lyft driver is not acting responsibly behind the wheel of a vehicle, they could injure a passenger or other motorists sharing the road with them. The following is a list of common causes of Uber and Lyft accidents in Bucks County that could lead to a personal injury claim.
Uber and Lyft drivers are paid based on the number of people they transport during their shift. As a result, some rideshare drivers may speed in order to transport as many passengers as possible in a limited time. This is extremely dangerous as the rideshare driver could cause an accident that could injure the passenger and other people involved in the crash. High-speed car accidents often result in victims sustaining severe or possibly fatal injuries.
There are many ways that an Uber or Lyft driver could become distracted. For example, rideshare drivers are frequently required to use their cellphones in order to find, accept, and end rides. Unfortunately, some rideshare drivers may perform these acts while they are still driving, which could lead to a serious accident. If your Uber or Lyft driver caused an accident due to being distracted, we could help you get started on your case.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is dangerous for any person or pedestrian that is sharing the road with the intoxicated driver. After consuming alcohol or drugs, a driver’s senses will be dulled, and they will be more likely to cause a car accident. For example, a drunk driver could have trouble driving within a lane or may even become drowsy while behind the wheel.
Uber and Lyft drivers have the ability to set their own hours for the most part. Each company only allows a rideshare driver to work for 12 hours before they are required to take a mandatory six-hour break. However, if a rideshare driver is working another job in addition to Uber or Lyft, there is an increased risk they could drive while fatigued.
Exhausted drivers are more likely to make mistakes that could lead to a serious car accident. For instance, if a fatigued Uber driver falls asleep during their shift, they would endanger the lives of a passenger and others.
There are many other causes of Uber and Lyft car accidents that are not discussed above. If you were injured due to the actions of a negligent rideshare driver, you should consult with an experienced Bucks County Uber and Lyft accident lawyer to discuss your legal options to recover compensation.
Uber and Lyft Requirements for Compensation for a Car Accident
Drivers employed by Uber or Lyft use rented or personal vehicles to transport passengers from one destination to another. As expected, this requires passengers to be comfortable riding with strangers that are only immediately required to share their first name, make of their vehicle, and their driving record on the respective app. Records of accidents caused or other related data is not available to a passenger.
When an Uber or Lyft driver causes an accident in Bucks County, there are factors that must be considered when a passenger or motorist seeks to pursue compensation. The most important factor was the status of the rideshare driver when the accident occurred. For example, if a rideshare driver causes an accident while their app is turned off, Uber or Lyft will not provide the driver with insurance coverage. As a result, an injured passenger or motorist may have to pursue the driver directly, which can be troublesome if the driver’s insurance is not enough to cover their expenses.
If an Uber or Lyft accident occurs when the driver has logged into the application but has not accepted a ride, the driver will receive limited coverage for a car accident they cause. Under these circumstances, Uber and Lyft will provide a driver with insurance that covers $50,000 per injured person and $100,000 for injuries per accident. However, this insurance coverage will only trigger when the driver’s insurance cannot afford to pay this amount for an accident.
Finally, if an accident happens when a rideshare driver has accepted a ride or when the driver is transporting a passenger, the driver will be fully covered under the insurance policy for either company. Specifically, Uber or Lyft will authorize the use of their 1 million dollar insurance plan for car accidents.
If you are concerned about whether your circumstances will allow you to recover compensation, you should waste no time in speaking with an experienced Bucks County personal injury attorney.
How to Report an Accident with Uber or Lyft in Bucks County, PA
If you were injured in a car accident due to the negligence of an Uber or Lyft driver, one of the first steps you should take is to seek medical attention and contact law enforcement. Seeking medical attention can help you assess the severity of your injuries, which is important when filing a claim for damages. Even if you do not believe you are injured, it is possible you sustained an injury that may not exhibit symptoms for days or even weeks.
While it is valuable to have a police report after an Uber or Lyft accident, it is still necessary to file a claim with the rideshare company that employed the driver. To report an accident to Uber or Lyft, you can use their respective applications. Each app will have a “help” tab that an injured passenger or motorist can use to file a claim.
The help tab should have information about the driver, the route that was taken by the driver, and the date and time of when the ride started. Using this information and other evidence that was gathered at the scene of the accident, you can proceed to contact a representative from the company that caused your injuries.
Note, however, that the safety specialists for each company will work for the rideshare company. This means that they have an interest in ensuring that their employer does not have to take liability if there any circumstances that allow them to avoid liability. For example, if the accident occurred when the ride was complete and the passenger was exiting the vehicle, this may become a point of argument.
Our firm is available to help you speak with representatives from Uber or Lyft to ensure that a safety specialist does not diminish your claim. We can help alleviate your concerns about speaking to Uber or Lyft representatives about your claim.
To learn more about filing a car accident lawsuit against an Uber or Lyft driver, you should continue reading and contact the Reiff Law Firm.
Filing a Uber/Lyft Car Accident Lawsuit in Bucks County, PA
If you were the victim of an Uber or Lyft car accident in Bucks County, you should be compensated for your injuries and other losses. However, as mentioned, Uber or Lyft cannot be held liable for an accident that occurs when a rideshare driver is not logged into the application. The reason for this is that Uber and Lyft hire drivers as independent contractors.
Normally, a company could be held accountable for the negligent actions of an employee during the course of performing their work duties. However, many companies will hire people as independent contractors instead of full-fledged employees in order to avoid vicarious liability for the contractor’s actions. All Uber and Lyft drivers are considered independent contractors, which means that outside of the circumstances listed above, Uber and Lyft cannot be held legally accountable for their actions.
If Uber and Lyft cannot be held responsible for the actions of the driver because they were not logged into the application, the victim will need to pursue the driver directly. Unfortunately, if the injuries of the victim were severe, the insurance possessed by the driver may not offer sufficient compensation. Fortunately, the victim of the car accident could file a lawsuit against the rideshare driver.
When to File a Car Accident Lawsuit Against an Uber/Lyft Driver
When pursuing a lawsuit against a rideshare driver, you should be aware that there is a time limit for filing your case with a court of law due to the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations determines the length of time a victim has to file their potential civil suit. Note, however, that the amount of time provided to a victim will vary depending on the details of the case.
Please avoid assuming the filing deadline for your case. If you are incorrect about when the statute of limitations began to run for your case, you could miss the opportunity to file your case at all. As a result, you may not have any other options to seek compensation for damages sustained due to the crash.
In Pennsylvania, the statute of limitations for a car accident lawsuit is two years from the date of the injury. However, if you did not discover your injuries until a later date, you will have two years from the date of discovery to file your case. If you are unable to file your lawsuit within two years, the defendant could move to dismiss your case if you do file your case after the deadline expires.
There are many other reasons why you should consider filing your Uber or Lyft accident case as soon as possible. The Reiff Law Firm would be pleased to help you evaluate your options to recover compensation after an Uber or Lyft accident.
Our Committed Bucks County Uber & Lyft Accident Injury Attorneys are Here for You
If you or a family member was injured due to the negligence of an Uber or Lyft driver, contact an experienced Uber and Lyft accident attorney. The Reiff Law Firm is committed to providing you with the diligent and aggressive legal representation you need to pursue your personal injury claim. To schedule a free legal consultation, contact the Reiff Law Firm at (215) 709-6940.