Ever since Uber started in 2009, ride-sharing has become a popular and inexpensive form of transportation. Lyft followed in 2015 and is now serving 65 cities. Atlanta is listed fifth for the best ridesharing city, and the state of Georgia has over 5,000 Uber drivers.
Accidents involving rideshare services are complicated and the law is new. If you’ve been in a rideshare accident, you need an experienced Uber and Lyft rideshare accident lawyer in Atlanta on your side to help you recover damages from your injuries.
What to Do if You Were in an Uber or Lyft Accident
Anyone who is in any type of vehicle accident should call the police immediately. The police will make a formal report that will be used as the record of the accident. Too often, accounts of an accident vary as time passes.
Write down the make and model of the vehicles involved, take down the license number and name of the other driver, take lots of photos, and see if there are any witnesses. Note the condition of your rideshare driver. Was he or she driving recklessly? Could he or she be drunk? If you need medical attention, call an ambulance.
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What Uber or Lyft Drivers Should Do if They’ve Been in an Accident
Uber or Lyft drivers who have had an accident should contact their company immediately. It’s important you do not talk to an insurance representative without consulting an Uber and Lyft rideshare attorney in Atlanta first.
You have more rights than you may realize. For example, under Georgia law, not wearing a seatbelt is inadmissible. Don’t let an insurance agent lull you into believing that you’re dealing with anything other than a multi-billion dollar company that only wants to protect its interests.
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Liable Parties in Uber and Lyft Accidents
Proving fault can be difficult, but a personal injury attorney can help you manage your case. In Georgia, you must prove that the responsible party is more than 50% liable for the accident. If you were a passenger, you are not at fault and are eligible to recover damages. Lyft and Uber drivers are supposed to have personal policies and they are covered by corporate policies.
Uber carries insurance on a car from the minute their driver accepts a trip to its conclusion. UberBlack, UberSUV, and UberTaxi (cq), however, are covered under the commercial partner’s insurance company. Lyft has very clear insurance policies for its drivers, with amounts differing when a ride is in session versus when a driver is between rides.
Wrongful Death Caused By a Rideshare Accident
If your loved one suffered a wrongful death because of a rideshare accident in Atlanta, you may be eligible to pursue damages from the person or persons responsible on their behalf. Damages can include everything from lost wages from your loved one’s financial support, loss of consortium, and funeral and burial costs. A lawyer can help you fight for justice.
For a free legal consultation with a uber and lyft rideshare accidents lawyer serving Atlanta, call 404-400-4000
Damages You Can Recover From an Uber or Lyft Accident
Accident victims are entitled to recovery from medical costs, repairs for car damage, and pain and suffering. In addition, if the driver is criminally at fault (i.e., driving under the influence), you are entitled to punitive damages which go above and beyond your costs of the accident and are meant to punish the driver for disobeying the law.
If you’re unable to work after your accident, you can include lost wages in your claim. If you’re no longer able to work in the capacity you were able to before your accident, your Atlanta Uber and Lyft rideshare accident attorney can include the loss of future earnings as well.
Limit on the Damages You Can Recover After a Rideshare Accident
The Georgia Supreme Court has eliminated a cap on damages you can recover after suffering injuries in a rideshare accident. Therefore, it’s important to go over all the elements of your accident with your attorney to make sure you’ve covered every damage to which you are entitled. Your total settlement award can include both economic and non-economic damages.
Uber and Lyft Car Accidents Compared to Other Auto Accidents
Unlike typical car or truck accidents, there are multiple insurance policies involved in a ridesharing accident—the rideshare company’s, the driver’s, and yours. However, similar to any auto accident, insurance companies want you to settle quickly. But once you do so, you sign away any right to recover additional damages from that accident.
Atlanta Uber and Lyft Rideshare Accident Lawyers Will Manage Your Case
After seeking medical attention following a crash, you will want to speak with an Atlanta Uber and Lyft Rideshare accident lawyer. An attorney can guide you through legal processes for your case and manage your claim in several ways, including:
- Investigating the accident to determine fault and liability
- Collecting evidence to support your claim
- Look into the time reports from the rideshare driver
- Establishing your damages and your case value
- Handling all communications and paperwork
- Negotiating a settlement with the insurance adjuster
- If necessary, taking the at-fault party to trial
What if the Uber or Lyft Driver Has No Passengers When They Hit You?
Georgia, along with a few other states, passed legislation regulating ridesharing companies and requiring them to cover their drivers as soon as the driver and app user connect via the app. That means coverage is required for drivers who accept a fare but haven’t yet picked up their passengers.
Your law firm’s investigators will dig into the facts of your accident to see if the driver was on the clock or just driving for personal use. Either way, you can get representation for your rideshare accident case.
Common Issues With Rideshare Companies
With controversy surrounding rideshare companies, the complexity of collision cases can be quite overwhelming. Some common problem with rideshare companies, such as Uber and Lyft, that could be used against them in your case include:
Lack of Driver Training
The only requirements to be a rideshare driver is a driver’s license and a vehicle that is in decent condition. There is no driver skill test conducted by Uber or Lyft to determine if that driver would be a proper candidate to provide ridesharing services to the general public. The risks involved with no background check or driving test, could be the reason for an accident.
No Proper Regulation
Ridesharing companies have been given a new classification known as Transportation Network Companies (TNC). Unfortunately for passengers, this lack of regulation makes them vulnerable to negligence and reckless behavior.
Unclear Insurance Policies
There are many loopholes with rideshare companies’ insurance policy set-up. There is no regulated verification as to whether the driver has insurance. The driver could be uninsured or underinsured. Also, even though Uber and Lyft have their own insurance policies, there is no guarantee that they will pay up and could turn the blame on you or the driver.
Rideshare Accident Attorneys in Atlanta Can Help
Without a personal injury attorney representing you, you will be at the mercy of a large sophisticated multi-million dollar company that really doesn’t care if you’re taken care of. Insurance companies look at cases very differently if they know you’re represented.
You only have one chance to get what you deserve, let the Atlanta Uber and Lyft rideshare accident lawyers at John Foy & Associates help you. Our phone line is staffed every day of the year. We’re the experts at personal injury law and offer our services on a contingency-fee basis.