Rideshare models such as Uber and Lyft have been around for some time now. We are all familiar with the convenience of using your cell phone to book a driver. The app is super easy to use, the service cost-effective and efficient. As a result, many people now use Uber as their primary means of transport.
However, many of us never consider the implications of suffering a severe injury as a passenger of an uber driver.
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Paralyzed as a Passenger: Are Uber Accidents Common?
According to Uber’s Safety Report released in 2019, Uber accidents resulted in 97 fatal crashes and a total of 107 deaths between 2019 and 2019. Compare this to 36,000 deaths in the US from car crashes in 2018 alone, and the figures don’t look too bad.
However, the same crash report failed to disclose how many Uber accidents there were in which injuries were sustained. The reasons for the non-disclosure are at best not convincing, at worst a coverup for figures which are higher than what Uber expected them to be.
Technology Review referring to a new report released in 2021 from the University of Chicago and Rice University, states that “the rise of ride-sharing services has increased traffic deaths by 2% to 3% in the US since 2011, equivalent to as many as 1,100 mortalities a year.”
As is the case in all accidents in which injuries are sustained, the statistics count for nothing and offer little respite when you are the one confined to a wheelchair. Unfortunately, accidents do happen, and some Uber accidents result in passengers being severely injured and even paralyzed.
Do I have a Legal Claim Against Uber?
As an Uber passenger, you may be able to file a legal claim against Uber. Uber carries insurance to cover these eventualities.
The cause of the Uber driver’s accident is not relevant, so even if the driver was not at fault, you are still entitled to claim.
Should you consider filing a claim, be sure to do so within two years from the date of the accident. This period may differ depending on which state the accident occurred in, so be sure to check the period with an experienced Uber accident attorney like those at the Soffer Firm based in Miami, Florida.
How Much Can I Claim?
Uber carries third-party liability insurance cover, which pays up to $1 million per accident for personal injuries or property damage. Uber drivers are also compelled to have private liability coverage and uninsured/underinsured insurance up to $1 million per accident. The private liability cover needs to be exhausted before the 3rd party liability kicks in.
Strangely, whether the uber driver was logged into the Uber app at the time of the accident will determine whether the private liability cover or the 3rd party liability policy will apply.
If the Uber driver was not logged in to the app, the driver’s insurance policy would pay for damages.
If the driver was logged in and was transporting a passenger at the time of the accident, the company insurance policy covers injuries and fatalities.
What Can I Claim For?
Typically, you would claim financial damages for things like medical bills, pain, suffering, reduced quality of life, emotional or physical trauma, lost wages, vehicle damage, or replacement as a start.
Were you to die from injuries suffered from the accident, a claim would lie for family members or dependents in the form of a wrongful death lawsuit. Damages could include medical expenses before death, funeral costs, loss of companionship, and much more.
Who you end up claiming from and the amount you claim can be tricky, so it’s best to appoint an Uber Accident Lawyer to ensure your rights are protected.
As with all accident and injury claims, it is essential to appoint a specialist attorney to ensure that you get the maximum awarded to you. An experienced accident claims lawyer will make sure to claim all the damages possible, including future medical expenses, which can be exorbitant, especially if you are paralyzed. In addition, most attorneys will work on a percentage basis, so you only pay legal fees if granted an award.