men taking picture after rideshare accident

At MKP Law Group, LLP our attorneys exclusively represent injury victims. For years we have fought on behalf of clients who were hurt in rideshare car accidents due to the negligence of another party. We realize that it can be difficult to afford quality accident injury lawyers so we always work on what is known as a contingency fee basis, meaning WE DON’T GET PAID UNLESS WE WIN.

There are no upfront, out-of-pocket costs to our clients. Our experienced accident attorneys have recovered millions on behalf of our clients and will fight hard on your behalf to ensure you get maximum compensation for injuries from your rideshare accident. Our car accident injury attorneys work with a team of medical experts throughout Los Angeles and California to ensure that you or a loved one receives top-notch medical care for a speedy and healthy recovery while we deal with the insurance companies.

We are a team of renowned rideshare injury attorneys representing injury victims throughout the State of California. MKP Law Group, LLP’s team strives to make the process as easy and quick as possible for you. The team at MKP is experienced, attentive, dependable and tenacious so call us today at 310-285-5353 to schedule your 100% free consultation.

All of our cases are on a contingency fee basis, meaning if we don’t win your case, you don’t owe us a dime.

Why Hire a Lawyer For Your Uber or Lyft Rideshare Car Accident?

inside uber

After revolutionizing the commuter industry with its affordable UberX ridesharing option in 2012, Uber became essential for millions of Californian commuters and travelers. Other ridesharing companies, like Lyft, soon followed and now, along with Uber, are an integral part of daily life for many Californians.

Often cheaper than traditional taxis and faster than taking the bus, these cellphone application-based companies have transformed how Californians commute. They now compete with and seem to be replacing taxis and town car services for many riders.

Naturally, with more rideshare cars on the road, Lyft and Uber car accidents are on the rise.

The subsequent insurance claims involving Uber and Lyft car accidents can be considerably complicated. With multiple insurance companies, insurance coverage variations based on stages of the trip, and frequent disputes as to who was at-fault for the accident, help from an expert Los Angeles rideshare attorney can help you navigate the best tactics to recuperate damages if you’ve been injured.

What to do after a Ridesharing Accident?

rideshare injury

Things to Do When Involved in an Uber or Lyft Car Accident:

1)   Contact the Police to Generate a Traffic Collision Report

It is helpful to have an official police report, known as a Traffic Collision Report, documenting your rideshare car accident. If you are a passenger, it can be especially useful if you feel that the rideshare driver of the car is at fault. Police reports will provide insurance information for all vehicles involved in the accident, which allows our Los Angeles Uber Accident attorneys to pursue claims against all parties, not just the Uber or Lyft driver.

2)   Document Your Trip Information

Be sure to screenshot or otherwise save the trip information to document the trip and accident.

3)   Seek Medical Attention

If you are an accident victim and have severe injuries from a rideshare car accident, you should seek immediate medical attention for your injuries. Be sure to document your doctor appointments and medical bills.

4)   Call MKP Law Group, LLP for a 100% Free Consultation

Lyft and Uber car accident insurance claims are complicated. The legal team at MKP Law Group, LLP is experienced in handling insurance claims to help injured people recover the maximum financial compensation they deserve. If you or a loved one have suffered serious injuries as a result of an Uber or Lyft Rideshare car accident, contact us today to discuss your legal options.

The Complexity and Issues with Uber and Lyft Rideshare Accidents

attorney team meetingWhether you are a Uber or Lyft driver or one of their passengers, victims of rideshare accidents are often confused as to what to do.

  • Who is responsible for the injuries?
  • Do you, as the passenger, sue the Uber driver, the rideshare company itself, or the other vehicle that struck the rideshare vehicle?
  • How do you determine who is at fault?

Drivers for rideshare companies often have to deal with two insurance companies: their personal auto insurance carrier and the rideshare company’s carrier. Plus, there are specific California laws that come into play.

With multiple insurance companies claims, insurance coverage variations based on stages of the rideshare trip, and frequent disputes as to who was at-fault for the accident, it is highly recommended you hire an experienced Los Angeles Lyft or Uber accident lawyer to figure out the proper steps to follow. MKP Law Group, LLP’s legal team delivers support and know-how to fight for their clients to get the compensation they deserve. Whether you are a passenger in a Uber or Lyft car accident, a driver, or someone else injured in a rideshare accident, the team at MKP is experienced, attentive, dependable, and tenacious so call us today at 310-285-5353 to schedule your 100% free consultation. Remember, all of our cases are on a contingency fee basis, meaning if we don’t win your case you don’t owe us a dime.

Needless to say, accidents involving Uber and Lyft can lead to much confusion for both drivers and passengers.

Insurance, Laws, and Liability for Uber or Lyft Accidents in California

In California, there have been specific laws enacted to help the legal system better explain the working status of employed rideshare drivers. Between their recently defined employee (not independent contractor) status and the 3 phase system that impacts rideshare drivers insurance liability, understanding certain components of the system are crucial to moving forward knowledgeably with your case.

California Bill AB5 concludes that rideshare drivers are employees

The California Bill AB5 clarifies California’s laws regarding Uber and Lyft employee status.
Both Uber and Lyft companies have lobbied tirelessly to keep their drivers categorized as independent contractors instead of employees. Keeping drivers classified as independent contractors works in the rideshare company’s favor by limiting what insurance claims the companies would be responsible for.

For instance, if a rideshare driver engages in or commits sexual assault or other misconduct on a passenger, the driver, not the rideshare company, would be at fault only if they are independent contractors.

However, the passage of California Bill AB5 conclusively determined that rideshare drivers are employees, not independent contractors. This employee definition means that if either an Uber car accident or Lyft car accident results in personal injuries or property damage, the rideshare company can be held responsible.

Lyft or Uber Driver Insurance

Uber and Lyft require that drivers have personal auto coverage. However, drivers’ personal insurance will almost always not apply while drivers are logged in on Lyft or Uber’s application and are actively working.

While a driver is logged into the application, the rideshare company’s insurance covers the vehicle while the car is in the process of transporting a passenger. It’s important to know that the company’s insurance coverage varies based on the stage of the ride, also known as Rideshare Periods.

What are the 3 Rideshare Periods?

If you are a rideshare driver, the insurance liability coverage varies based on Rideshare Periods. These periods change depending on what the driver is doing.

  • Period 1 is when the driver turns on the rideshare application. This period is better defined as the waiting period while the driver is “on the clock” and actively ready and waiting for a rider to confirm a trip. During Period 1, the insurance liability coverage for Uber and Lyft drivers is $50,000 per person, $100,000 for any accident involving bodily injury, and $25,000 for property damage.
  • Period 2 is when the application is active, the driver has officially accepted a ride and is en route to pick up a rider. During Period 2, Uber and Lyft’s insurance liability coverage is $1,000,000 for liability.
  • Period 3 occurs when the driver has picked up a rider and is in the process of completing the trip; like Period 2, a $1,000,000 policy for bodily injury liability coverage applies. If the Uber or Lyft driver is not at fault for the rideshare accident, the amount of damages a victim can recover is reduced by the amount of insurance available from the at-fault driver.

Additional Protection for Uber Drivers to Consider

At our law firm, we recommend that all Uber and Lyft drivers add what is known as “Ridesharing Endorsements” to their personal car insurance coverage.

Most personal insurance policies do not cover ridesharing for Lyft or Uber. Adding “Ridesharing Endorsements” supplement a driver’s personal policy and can provide coverage to rideshare drivers when the company’s insurance does not apply. These policy supplements can be crucial to ensure there are no gaps in a driver’s insurance coverage for those situations when the rideshare company’s insurance does not apply.

What if You’re an Uber Passenger Involved in an Accident?

Passengers of Lyft and Uber vehicles that are involved in car accidents can potentially recover from multiple insurance policies.

If the driver of the ridesharing service was even partially at-fault for the incident, then there is a claim to be made against the rideshare company’s insurance carrier. Additionally, if the other vehicle involved in the accident was also at fault, then there is a claim to be made against their insurance carrier should they be insured.

As always, the issues of Uninsured and Underinsured Motorists [NR1] can come into play.
California law (Cal. Veh. Code 5430) requires that rideshare companies like Lyft and Uber carry a $1,000,000 policy for injuries to passengers and third parties in the event of an accident when the rideshare driver is on-the-clock. Like all insurance companies, Uber and Lyft’s insurance companies want to pay as little money as possible on claims.

These companies will go to great lengths to argue that the rideshare driver is at fault. That is where MKP’s law offices can help. Our Uber and Lyft accident lawyers are specialists in accident claims. They can work to help you in obtaining a recovery that justly compensates you for your injuries.

Third-Party Considerations – What if an Uber hits you or your car?

Anyone injured in a rideshare accident such as other drivers, motorcyclists, pedestrians, bicyclists, and anyone else, can present a claim against the Lyft of Uber’s insurance carrier. Conversely, rideshare drivers and passengers can submit a claim against a third-party who is at-fault and responsible for causing the incident.

What are the damages you can recover after an Uber or Lyft Car Accident?

The damages one can recover for a rideshare personal injury claim are essentially the same damages that can be recovered in an ordinary vehicle accident. Those damages may include the following:

  • Medical expenses and bills
  • Lost income
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Emotional Distress
  • Loss of Consortium
  • Funeral expenses
  • Property Damage

In rare cases, special damages known as “punitive damages” can be awarded. Punitive damages are awarded in order to make an example of and punish the at-fault party to deter future wrongful conduct.

A personal injury victim must be able to show that a Defendant acted with a willful or extreme reckless disregard for the safety of others, or with malice, oppression, or fraud, to justify an award of punitive damages

Partially Responsible?

It is important to remember that a personal injury victim can still present a claim even if they were partially at fault for the accident.

California has adopted a comparative liability system. This system is sometimes referred to as comparative negligence. What it means for rideshare car accident victims is that they can still recover damages even if they were partially responsible for causing the accident, but the damages they can recover will be reduced based on the degree to which they were responsible for causing the accident.

Uber and Lyft Rideshare Stats

With the ridesharing industry still in its infancy, it’s hard to come by researched statistics related to traffic accidents and fatalities. We’ve rounded up some of the top stats from multiple sources.

  • Rideshare traffic deaths have risen 2-3% a year since 2011. University of Chicago
  • Rideshare drivers spend 40% to 60% of their time searching for passengers, a practice known as “deadheading.” MIT Technology Review
  • “Ride-hailing accidents and incidents generated 9,388 claims that resulted in $185.6 million in losses in 2014, 2015 and 2016.” California Department of Insurance
  • In 2017 and 2018, 107 people were killed in vehicular accidents in Uber rideshares in the United States, constituting 0.0003% of the 2.3 billion rides. Uber
  • “Uber excluded from its tally of fatal accidents 22 deaths documented in its own records.” SF Public Press

uber crash fatalities pie chartSource: Uber

Contact MKP Law Group, LLP Today for Your Los Angeles Uber Accident Attorney Needs

If you or someone you know was involved in an Uber or Lyft car accident, whether as a driver, passenger, or third-party call us today at 310-285-5353 for a free consultation so that we can answer your questions in person and explain the legal process.

Our attorneys have dealt with numerous Uber and Lyft claims, and know-how to decipher the insurance companies in order to maximize our clients’ recoveries.

You should not accept any settlement offer made by the rideshare company’s insurance carrier without first consulting with MKP’s attorneys. As always, if we don’t win your case you don’t owe us a dime.

We proudly service clients in the city of Los Angeles and other cities in Los Angeles County including Santa Monica, Westwood, West Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Long Beach, Pasadena, Glendale, and more. We also represent clients in Orange County, Riverside County, and San Bernardino County as well.

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