Rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft are rising in popularity throughout the United States. Like in many states in the U.S., Knoxville locals rely on the convenience of these services to transport them to work, shopping, appointments, and other social activities. Drivers participating in these rideshare companies also get an opportunity to make extra income.
However, like any means of transportation, rideshare services have their own set of challenges. One of these challenges is rideshare accidents. Unfortunately, most people are unsure of what to do when involved in a rideshare accident.
Suppose you sustained severe injuries or damages in a rideshare accident. In that case, you might be wondering who will compensate for your loss should you file a compensation claim against the at-fault party. Lawyers at the Law Offices of G. Turner Howard III are equipped to protect your rights and help you pursue the compensation you deserve. Call us today to schedule a free consultation with G. Turner Howard III, a Knoxville rideshare accident attorney
Steps to Take Following a Rideshare Accident
If you are involved in a rideshare accident, there are steps to follow, whether you were a passenger in an Uber or Lyft or a driver in another vehicle. While rideshare accidents are different, there is a common procedure anyone injured in this type of accident can follow to ensure things remain under control.
- Call law enforcement or the police following a rideshare accident. They will investigate the cause of the crash and generate a report containing crucial details like why and how the crash happened and who is responsible. Remember to request a copy of the police report once it is completed.
- Contact the rideshare company immediately.
- Obtain contact information of witnesses and any drivers and passengers involved in the accident.
- Get prompt medical treatment as soon as possible, even if you think the injuries are minor.
- Take pictures and videos of the event, showing your injuries and damage to the vehicle.
- Don’t discuss your claim with the insurance company before talking to a lawyer.
Determining Liability in Rideshare Accidents
It is important to perform extensive investigation when determining liability in a rideshare crash. A rideshare attorney can help you determine whether liability lies with the rideshare driver, their employer, or both. The lawyer will also confirm if the Uber or Lyft driver was actively engaged on the ridesharing app when the accident occurred or other parties contributed to the accident.
If the rideshare driver is responsible for the accident, you may be entitled to compensation for the loss suffered. However, you should note that while some rideshare companies provide insurance coverage for drivers, some require drivers to carry their own insurance coverage. Consulting a rideshare accident attorney will help you understand which insurance company should compensate for your damages and losses.
In some circumstances, the rideshare company may bear responsibility for the accident. For example, if the company failed to conduct a major background check or failed to ensure that a driver has an up-to-date driver’s license, you may have a right to file a compensation claim against the company.
Why Do Insurance Companies Deny Rideshare Injury Claims?
Insurance coverage is one of the biggest concerns in rideshare settlement claims. When rideshare companies began working, they faced a range of problems regarding their insurance coverage.
This is because most of these companies were not initially governed by state laws, other local tax regulatory bodies, or transportation systems. Plus, many drivers did not have clear commercial insurance policies but instead secured personal policies that did not provide coverage when the vehicle was used for commercial reasons.
In addition, most rideshare drivers in Knoxville and across the country believed their auto insurance plans covered accidents. On the contrary, the insurance company provides coverage based on the evaluation of the risk of a claim and crash. Hence, when the risk is high, it attracts premiums.
Insurance companies started denying ridesharing injury claims when they discovered Uber and Lyft drivers were using their cars for personal reasons rather than using them commercially to make money. These drivers would have been easily covered if they purchased commercial policies with higher premiums.
Types of Compensation Rideshare Accident Victims May Receive
No two rideshare accidents are the same. Every accident is unique, with different facts, needs, and circumstances. With the help of a Knoxville rideshare accident attorney, you can file an injury claim that lets you pursue the compensation that covers all your losses and damages. The common types of rideshare accident compensations may include:
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Medical costs and all expenses related to medical treatments and procedures
- Loss of current and future income – If the victim is unable to return to work due to the injuries caused by the rideshare accident
- Future medical bill if the victim is permanently disabled
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Punitive damages
How Knoxville Rideshare Accident Attorneys Can Help
With rideshare companies steadily growing in popularity in the recent past, it is evident that accidents involving these services have also significantly increased. If you were injured in an Uber or Lyft crash in Knoxville, Tennessee, you might not know who bears the responsibility of compensating you for your damages and losses.
Plus, calculating non-financial losses like loss of enjoyment and emotional suffering can prove legally complex and overwhelming. However, no matter your circumstances, we recommend you act fast when filing your case because the statute of limitations of Knoxville requires you to do so within a specified time.
To ensure everything goes well, it is best to seek legal assistance from The Law Offices of G. Turner Howard III. Our lawyers have the experience to walk you through your legal recourse to ensure you obtain a fair settlement from insurance companies. Contact us online or call us at 865-658-4012 to discuss your case confidentially with G. Turner Howard III, our lead rideshare accident attorney.