When you’ve been hurt in a car accident, the issues of liability and fault are vastly important. This is true for both insurance claims and personal injury lawsuits. “Liability” refers to someone’s legal responsibility for your injury, and “fault” refers to the person who caused the car accident. There are subtle legal differences between the two ideas, but you can mostly use the terms interchangeably.
In any car accident, determining fault can be difficult. Everyone has their side of the story, and those stories can contradict one another, even when everybody believes they are telling the truth. These matters can be further complicated when you’ve been in a ridesharing accident.
Ridesharing services such as Lyft and Uber are increasingly common in our everyday lives. It’s only natural to see an increased number of ridesharing accidents on the road. These accidents affect drivers, passengers, and other drivers.
In this article, we will cover what to do if you’ve been involved in a ridesharing accident. We will provide tips on what to do, then we will explain receiving benefits from either insurance or a personal injury lawsuit.
TREAT THE ACCIDENT AS YOU WOULD ANY OTHER
When you’ve been involved in a car accident, there are standard steps you should always take. Everyone involved should take these steps.
- Tend to the Wounded
First and foremost, you should treat any immediate injuries you can. Try to stop any bleeding, gently move anyone away from danger, and so on. Unless you’re a medical professional who knows what they’re doing, you should do only what is necessary. If everyone is out of harm’s way and the injuries are mostly managed, stop there. You could cause more damage by attempting to do more.
- Call 911
Once you’ve done all you can for those who are hurt, call emergency services. They can take over from there.
- Collect Evidence and Documentation
After the immediate threat subsides, begin recording the scene. Start by taking pictures of everything. Include damage to all cars, and record any surrounding damage, including every detail. If there are tire marks, bits of glass in the road, etc., get pictures of that, too.
Collect the information of everyone involved, including names, addresses, license tags, driver’s license numbers, and so on. If the other party is uncooperative, get what you can. A simple picture of a license plate can help a lot.
- Call Your Insurance
You can wait a bit for this next step, but don’t wait too long. Call your insurance company and start your claim. Be prepared to hand over all evidence you collected at the scene.
- Call an Attorney
In the best-case scenarios, you won’t need the services of an attorney. Your insurance may be able to handle everything, and the whole process can go smoothly. However, it’s always best to retain a legal professional in case things go wrong.
This is especially true in a ridesharing accident. There could be several insurance companies involved. Claims and benefits can get complicated, even when everyone is cooperating. It’s helpful to have a legal professional on your side, overseeing everyone’s actions.
INSURANCE IN A RIDESHARING ACCIDENT
If you are a rideshare driver, you should be insured by your company. This insurance, however, is only active from the time you accept a job to the time you drop off your client. You also have the option to invest in ridesharing insurance that can help cover you between jobs. Beyond that, you should also have your own personal insurance. Between these three options, you should be covered in an accident.
In most cases, the rideshare company covers all passengers, regardless of who is at fault in an accident.
PERSONAL INJURY LAWSUITS IN RIDESHARE ACCIDENTS
Your company should insure you for any damages or injuries. However, there has been an ongoing struggle with rideshare companies fairly compensating their drivers. Furthermore, insurance companies are notorious for denying or undercutting necessary benefits. If your claim isn’t covering the cost of your repairs or medical treatments, it may be necessary to take the matter to court. Most likely, your employer would be your defendant. Depending on the situation, it may be necessary to sue the other driver, instead.
If insurance has been unwilling or unable to cover your needs, you may need to take the matter to court. As a passenger, it may be necessary to sue the rideshare company directly. Your driver may be unable to cover your damages if they lose the case, making the whole process a waste. The company, however, is prepared for such scenarios, and covering damages is part of its business model.
IF YOU WERE THE OTHER DRIVER
Of course, many accidents involve more than one car. Getting hit by a rideshare driver shouldn’t alter the outcome of the situation. Oklahoma is an at-fault state, meaning the driver responsible for the crash covers the resulting expenses. More accurately, their insurance company does. Your claim should go through the rideshare company, and its insurance should cover your bills. If there are hiccups and denials, you should seek legal representation for help.
If you’ve been hurt in a ridesharing accident, no matter which role you played, you can rely on our firm to help. Call us today at 918-492-7674 for a free consultation. You can also contact us online.