Traveling with Uber is becoming quite popular, and such companies are hiring drivers who work as independent contractors. They use their own cars and use smartphone apps. Passengers get bills and pay through the application. But, what if you end up in an Uber accident? Can you file a claim against the Uber company or the driver or any of the other drivers involved in the accident? Are there attorneys that handle Uber car accident cases in Boston?
Uber Drivers are Independent Contractors
It won’t be such an easy case to sue the Uber company directly. This is because they hire independent contractors, which means the company is not liable for what the driver did. Remember, your Uber driver is not employed at this company; they just collaborate.
Sure, the driver is connected to the company and uses their phone and app to locate the passenger, but they drive their own cars and have their own driving hours and work conditions.
Ride-share drivers and ride-share companies like Uber have limited legal liability to their drivers’ actions. It won’t be easy to sue the company. But, it does not mean that the company is not financially responsible, so for your injuries, they might have to pay you a claim.
Uber’s Car Insurance
If you want to collaborate with Uber, you, as a driver, must have your own car insurance coverage. The company and the driver both will cover a potential accident with their insurances.
Unless the driver has an endorsement, their policy won’t cover the compensation. The driver’s policy is usually expected to be used first.
In case the driver denies the claim, Uber’s policy will pay the compensation. But when the driver suggests the claim to his own company, they don’t have an endorsement; their own insurer can cancel their policy, on the basis that they have committed fraud (the policy terms can show that they insured a car which can be used for personal use only).
When the Company Provides Coverage in an Uber Car Accident
Here is the four-tiered approach that ride-share companies have when it comes to insurance coverage for their drivers:
Period 0 – The driver is not in the driver’s mode (they don’t have an app). Drivers’ personal policies will apply to any accident; Uber policies do not apply.
Period 1 – The driver has an app on and is driving, waiting for a match. If the driver causes an accident, they must refer to the injured person’s claim first to their own carrier. If the carrier denies the claim, Uber’s policy will cover.
Period 2 – The driver has a match and is driving to pick up the passenger. If an accident occurs, then the claim will be managed just like it will be in Period 1.
Period 3 – The driver is transporting a passenger, and once the drop-off period ends and an accident happens, the upper mentioned two-step will apply. The claim is submitted to the driver’s insurers, and if it is denied, then Uber will cover it. Uber policies will apply to damage to the driver’s car (the driver must check their own policy, with the attendant risk that they will lose their insurance). The policy limits of the coverage are low (they are limited to the vehicle’s actual cash value and a heavy deductible of $1,000 to 2,500).
What Damages Can You Recover in an Uber Car Accident?
If your claim pass, you can get compensation for your damages (special and general).
Special (or economic) damages include financial loss you have as a result of the accident (damage and repair of property, payment for your medical bills and compensation for your lost wages due to your injuries). General damages (non-economic) include compensation for your pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, stress, and so on.
What you need to remember if you get involved in an Uber accident is to gather the details of the car accident. Get out of the vehicle (if you are not injured) and exchange info with the Uber driver and any other driver involved in the accident. Take photos of the accident, write down the time and place, car plates, and take photos of your injuries (if any).
Don’t waste time, call a skilled car wreck law firm in Boston. Our team has specialized Uber accident attorneys who have covered such accidents. We know what to do and what steps you need to take when filing the claim.
Allow us to stand by your side and help you go through the process.
Call today and schedule your first free consultation.