Lyft passengers who are involved in a car accident have many of the same rights as passengers in regular vehicle accidents, and understanding those rights is key to getting enough compensation after a crash. In most instances, the at-fault party is responsible for the injuries, and the injured party will seek compensation from the at-fault party’s insurance provider. However, in a Lyft accident, determining at-fault parties becomes more challenging because of the addition of the rideshare company in addition to the car’s driver.
Lyft Accident Injuries – Who Is Liable?
The ultimate question in these accidents is whether the rideshare driver or the company itself is liable for the accident and any serious injuries it caused. The answer often is based on whether or not the rideshare driver is considered an employee or an independent contractor based on state laws.
If the driver is an independent contractor, then the driver and the driver’s insurance is liable for the injuries, and Lyft is not. If the driver is an employee, then the company is also liable for any injuries in the accident. In most states, Lyft drivers work as independent contractors to add liability protection to Lyft.
Insurance Coverage and Lyft Drivers
Lyft drivers are required to carry personal liability insurance as drivers. Because personal liability often does not apply to commercial use of a personal vehicle, many insurance companies also offer special endorsements for rideshare vehicles. If the driver has this endorsement, it can help cover injuries to passengers in a crash.
Unfortunately, many Lyft drivers do not carry adequate insurance coverage to handle serious injuries to passengers, even with the rideshare endorsement. To help with this, Lyft now has a third-party liability coverage for up to $1 million for personal injuries in an accident. This additional insurance can help injured passengers get adequate compensation for their injuries. Even though the company may not be liable due to the classification of the driver, this insurance can help injured passengers get coverage.
Determining Fault in Lyft Accidents
Another factor to consider in seeking compensation after a Lyft accident is who is at fault. If the Lyft driver is fully at fault for the accident, then they and their insurance are liable for the injuries. However, if another driver, such as the other driver in the crash, is at fault, their insurance is the one that is liable. In a state where liability can be shared, both drivers can be partially at fault and share partial liability for the accident. This can make getting fair compensation even more challenging.
Getting Compensation for Lyft Accident Injuries
To get compensation for Lyft accident injuries, passengers usually must start with any insurance companies that carry liability in the case. If the Lyft driver was at-fault, this starts with the driver’s insurance company. If that coverage is not sufficient for the injuries, then filing with the Lyft company’s insurance provider is the next step. Passengers cannot file for Lyft insurance coverage until they have first filed with the at-fault driver.
If all of the insurance companies do not have sufficient coverage, or if the passenger is having trouble showing fault in the accident, a personal injury case may be needed. Personal injury attorneys are skilled at digging into the insurance policies to determine how much coverage is there, then pushing for adequate payments for injuries. They also protect accident victims from accepting insurance settlements that are not sufficient to cover the long-term effects of their injuries.
Most Lyft accident cases are settled without the need to go to court. adding a personal injury attorney to the case shows the insurance companies that the insured passenger is serious about getting adequate compensation, and they become more willing to deliver that compensation as promised.