Is it possible to sue Uber for a car accident? With the recent release of Super Pumped, in which Joseph Gordon Levitt plays the founder of Uber, we’re reminded of the dangers that rideshare services pose to Texas roads. While a taxi or rideshare is a great way to avoid a DWI charge, what happens when an Uber driver causes an accident?
Unfortunately, the answer isn’t so easy. Luckily, the car wreck lawyers at Nguyen & Chen are ready to dig deep into the matter. When an Uber driver causes you harm, whether as a passenger or another driver, you have rights.
How Complex Are Uber Accidents?
The first thing to consider is the employment status of Uber drivers. Technically, every driver for a rideshare service is an independent contractor. This often abused work status means that they are not employed by Uber.
On its own, this makes a car accident claim against the company or driver a problem. Unfortunately, Uber accidents are more complex than your average motor vehicle collision. That’s why it’s so important to have an attorney on your side to represent your best interests. If you need to sue Uber for a car accident, your lawyer helps you understand your position and options.
As independent contractors, rideshare drivers use and insure their own vehicles. While many of them tend to be safe drivers, there are signs that connect an increase in traffic deaths to the rise of these services.
What Happens When an Uber Driver Causes an Accident?
When an Uber driver causes an accident as they try to find a location or accept a new far, does that make them liable for your injuries? The short answer is yes, it does.
However, what happens next is a little more complex. There’s negligence at play and a clear indicator of fault, but whose insurance do you file a claim against?
That’s when the issue becomes a little more complicated. At Nguyen & Chen, our personal injury attorneys work with you to investigate your claim and explore every possible avenue of compensation. Every accident is different, with specific facts and circumstances.
These guide our legal team’s strategy as they build a case for you.
When to Sue Uber for a Car Accident
Whether you sue a driver as an individual or an Uber driver depends on their activity at the time of the accident. For example, if the driver is “off the clock” in any capacity, you’d file against their car insurance. To Uber, it doesn’t matter whether they are on their way home after a shift or on a break in the middle of different fares.
If they are off the clock, it’s not on Uber’s dime. Because the driver was not “working for Uber” at the time of the accident, you treat them like any other driver on the road.
However, if the driver is logged into the app, waiting for a fare, or in the middle of a ride, Uber is liable. In this instance, you file a claim with the company’s insurance program. Under their insurance options, they have a $50,000 to a maximum of $100,000 for injuries caused to third parties (you, the victim).
If you aren’t familiar with insurance policies and corporate policies, it’s not easy to figure out what to do after an auto accident. That’s why it’s a good idea to partner with an attorney who has experience and expertise in car accident claims.
Often, they know exactly where to look for evidence and how to begin your claim in an efficient and effective manner. Moreover, this allows you the time and space necessary to recover from your injuries.
While you focus on healing, your attorney focuses on your claim.
What Damages Does Uber Cover?
When you sue Uber for a car accident, the at-fault driver and their insurance company cover costs related to the incident. This includes a broad range of expenses. Often, people don’t consider every nickel and dime when they put together a claim.
A car accident attorney works to maximize your settlement to give you the funds you need now and in the future. Your settlement covers an array of damages, including the following.
- Property damage to your car and belongings
- Transportation expenses during repairs
- Medical expenses, including doctor visits, surgery, physical therapy, and more
- Lost wages and reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages in especially negligent cases
These damages cover all medical bills related to your accident and injuries. That includes a visit to the emergency room right after the accident all the way through your treatment. For instance, a rear-end accident might require you to see a spine specialist while a head-on collision might require you to be tested for a brain injury.
All of this treatment falls under your damages.
Typically, collisions are straightforward. However, the involvement of Uber makes the process more difficult. Oftentimes, the company tries to offer a quick settlement in order to sweep it under the rug.
However, this initial offer rarely includes all of your medical and financial needs. When you don’t know the extent of your injuries, how can the company know what to cover?
As you try to sue Uber for a car accident, your attorney helps you understand the value of your claim. Moreover, they help you navigate the process and maximize your settlement.
Do You Need a Lawyer to Sue Uber for a Car Accident?
While there’s nothing that requires you to hire a lawyer to sue Uber for a car accident, an attorney provides numerous benefits.
First, your legal team is your advocate. They keep your best interests in mind from the beginning of the claim, through negotiations, and into the courtroom when necessary. As your representative, they also handle all communication with the others involved.
This means that you have the time and space to focus on your recovery.
At Nguyen & Chen, our personal injury lawyers are available to help you understand your situation and your legal options. No one should take a rideshare accident lightly. When someone’s negligence causes you harm, you have rights.
Our attorneys fight for you and your future. Schedule a free consultation to see how our team can help you.