Over the past few years, the popularity of rideshare apps, such as Uber and Lyft, has skyrocketed. Indeed, last year, over 45 million people used a rideshare app at least once to get to their destination. However, drivers who are employed by these companies do not need to meet any special criteria other than having three years of driving experience and a clean driving record. The result is that, in too many cases, inexperienced drivers looking for a quick buck end up causing Florida car accidents while transporting passengers.
The rideshare movement, has raised a number of questions involving who can be held responsible when an accident occurs. The two main rideshare companies, Uber and Lyft, each maintain $1 million insurance policies to cover drivers, riders, and even third parties, such as pedestrians or other motorists. However, that policy is only in effect once a driver has accepted a passenger’s request for a ride.
If an accident occurs while a driver is waiting for a passenger to contact them, or is using their vehicle for personal reasons, the companies’ $1 million insurance policy will not provide coverage. However, there may be other options for accident victims, including filing a claim under their own insurance policy, filing a claim with the driver’s personal policy, or filing a claim with the rideshare company under their liability-only policy. The companies’ liability policies, however, offer only the greatly reduced coverage limits of $50,000 per person and $100,000 per accident.
It is important to keep in mind that rideshare drivers are not technically employees of the rideshare company but are classified as independent contractors. Thus, a company’s insurance provider may attempt to reject an accident victim’s claim if the driver’s conduct was intentional or reckless. For example, if a rideshare driver is involved in a Florida DUI accident, the rideshare company’s insurance company may deny the claim.
In this situation, it would then be up to the accident victim to establish that the rideshare company knew or should have known that the driver posed a risk. This could be done by discovering any complaints from prior riders or by looking through the driver’s reviews to see if any other passengers reported that the driver seemed intoxicated. In this case, the drunk driver’s own insurance policy would still likely provide coverage.
Have You Been Injured in a Florida Rideshare Accident?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Florida accident involving Uber, Lyft or any other rideshare company or other type of car accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation from one or more sources. The dedicated team of Florida personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Cecere Santana has extensive experience handling a wide range of car accident claims, including those involving taxis and rideshare drivers. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case, call 800-753-5529 today. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless we are able to help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
More Blog Posts:
Court Finds Golf Cart Accident Was Covered Under Plaintiff’s Insurance Policy, Cecere Santana Injury Lawyers Blog, published February 9, 2018.
Court Finds Student Attending School in Another State Is Covered under Parents’ Florida Insurance Policy, Cecere Santana Injury Lawyers Blog, published January 10, 2018.