Since Uber started in 2009, the use of rideshare apps has exploded in popularity. As of 2021, 3.5 million people were driving for Uber, and over 2 million driving for Lyft. That’s a lot of rides taken and miles traveled.
There’s no doubting the convenience of Uber and Lyft. Unfortunately, it’s also true that car accidents happen every day. In 2021, there were 121,345 reported car accidents in Arizona alone – and over 51,000 of those accidents resulted in injuries.
An Uber or Lyft is just like any other vehicle on the road, they can be involved in an accident just like anyone else. And despite the commercial service provided, rideshares are not the same as taxis or taking the bus. This makes the aftermath of a ridesharing accident surprisingly complicated.
A driver for Uber or Lyft is responsible for providing their own vehicle and they don’t need a commercial license, or even commercial insurance. This can make an insurance claim a little tricky in the event of an accident.
If you’re driving, you need to have some kind of insurance. It’s intended to cover the costs of any medical and repair bills that result from an accident. However, a personal car insurance policy doesn’t cover a driver if they’re using a vehicle for commercial purposes. Providing rides as an Uber or Lyft driver is considered use for a commercial purpose.
There are a few options for insurance for rideshare drivers. There is the facilitating company itself or the driver may have elected to purchase a commercial policy.
Uber and Lyft both provide insurance for their drivers. This insurance policy provides up to $1 million in liability coverage. But this is far from the “free money” that many people expect. Depending on the details of the accident, for example the driver was found at fault, a rideshare company’s insurance may not pay anything at all.
That $1 million in liability coverage is an attractive amount, but it’s not always up for grabs. There are very specific requirements that need to be satisfied if you want to see a single cent.
First, if you’re in an Uber or a Lyft and your vehicle is rear-ended, the other driver’s insurance will cover the price of any injuries or repairs. However, if that other driver is uninsured or underinsured, the rideshare company’s insurance policy may help pay for the rest of your injuries.
Secondly, the rideshare driver needs to be actually logged into the app. Remember, these are personal vehicles, and Uber or Lyft’s insurance provider won’t pay up if a driver was using his or her car for errands or other personal use.
However, once a driver is logged into the app, you’re automatically open to up to $50,000 in liability insurance. This means if you’re hit by an Uber or Lyft driver who was logged in (but not actively on duty) your injuries could be covered for up to $50,000.
On the other hand, everything changes if a rideshare driver is actively on duty. For an Uber or Lyft driver to qualify as “on duty”, he or she needs to satisfy either of these requirements:
The driver has accepted a ride request, and is on the way to pick up a passenger, or
The driver has already picked up a passenger, and is driving the passenger to a destination.
If an Uber or Lyft driver is on duty, the rideshare company’s $1 million in liability coverage is in effect. But after your accident, you’ll need some legal help to get any of that money. That’s where Arizona Rideshare Accident Lawyers can help.
Every car accident is different, and every rideshare accident is different too. It can be complicated to figure out whose insurance will cover the cost of your injuries, but an experienced rideshare accident lawyer can help you navigate your claim.
A rideshare accident claim can also be frustrating. Uber or Lyft’s insurance providers may be reluctant to pay you what you need for a full recovery. You may be stuck waiting for an insurance payout that’s either too late, too small, or both. Fortunately, an attorney from Arizona Rideshare Accident Lawyers can fight with these insurance providers on your behalf.
At TBD brand, we understand that a rideshare accident can be frustrating, confusing, and complicated. In order to file a claim, you’ll need to understand who’s at fault for your injuries, and how you can pursue compensation from the responsible party’s insurance provider.
TBD brand has over 100 years of combined legal experience, and we’ve helped thousands of clients all over Arizona. If you’re ready to get started, our attorneys are standing by to provide you with the information you need and advise you on the next steps. Don’t hesitate to take the steps necessary to receive what you’re owed. Get in touch with TBD brand today for a free consultation.