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Rideshare Accidents Are Common – Do You Know What to Do?

Rideshare apps seem to multiply by the day.  Be it Uber, Lyft, or one of the smaller rideshare apps on the market today, many, maybe even most, people use these apps to get around. Of course, when you enter a rideshare vehicle, you expect your driver to take you to your destination–be it in Hazleton or outside of it–safely.

The Hazleton rideshare accident lawyers at Munley Law know how to get you the compensation you need to recover from your injuries. For over 60 years, car wreck victims in the Hazleton area have come to Munley Law, where our team of accident attorneys consistently ranks among the Best Lawyers in America. We have earned the highest possible client satisfaction rankings and are board certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. If you get into a car accident with a rideshare driver, we’re here to help. Contact our Hazleton car accident lawyer today to schedule a free consultation.

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Rideshare Accidents Are Complicated – You Need an Experienced Lawyer

While we don’t think about them, rideshare car accidents are happening more frequently than ever. In a two-year period, Uber reported that there were approximately 107 motor vehicle fatalities reported across 97 fatal Uber-related crashes — and experts believe that those numbers may even be higher than reported.

As with any car wreck, rideshare accidents can severely harm you and your family. You may be injured. Your injury may keep you from returning to work, or from working at the same level you used to. What’s more, you could be left with a vehicle that is severely damaged or completely nonfunctional.

Now, who do you hold responsible? If you were injured by the careless driving of a rideshare driver, the natural inclination is to go after that driver. But the fact of the matter is car accidents involving Uber or Lyft drivers in Hazleton are filled with complexities.

While even the simplest fender bender can create problems for you and your family, matters get even more complicated when the other driver was driving for Lyft or Uber. For example, there can be questions about who is ultimately responsible for any damages caused by the driver. Is it the driver (who is likely considered an independent contractor for the rideshare company)? That driver’s insurance company? Is there a claim against the rideshare company itself?

A Hazleton rideshare accident lawyer preparing to make a statement in court

Can I Sue The Rideshare Company?

Most rideshare companies have insurance that covers their drivers and by extension you as a passenger or injured other driver. For example, Uber has specific insurance policies that correspond to different parts of the ride. Understanding these rideshare insurance policies can help you get a better understanding of who can be held responsible for your car accident. If you’re a passenger or a driver, Uber’s insurance policies cover:

  • When the driver is waiting for a passenger request: Uber’s first level of insurance coverage begins when drivers turn on the app and search for passengers who need a ride. This coverage is limited to liability only, meaning it will cover the medical bills and property damage incurred by the victims of the car accident because of the rideshare driver’s careless driving. The latest figures state that these policies cover $50,000 per person for injuries, $100,000 in total injury, and $25,000 for property damage (per accident). Additionally, this insurance may only apply if the driver’s insurance will not be able to cover the damages.
  • When a passenger is in the vehicle: Uber’s second level of coverage begins when a passenger is in the vehicle. This policy covers accidents in which the Uber driver’s careless driving results in a collision with other vehicles, pedestrians, or property. Uber’s insurance policy will cover up to $1,000,000 per accident. If a third-party driver is at fault and underinsured or uninsured, Uber also offers $1,000,000 worth of coverage. Finally, Uber also offers contingent collision and comprehensive coverage regardless of liability. It covers the cost of the driver’s vehicle and has a $1,000 deductible.
  • When there is no passenger and the driver is not waiting: If the Uber app is turned off and the driver is not “on the clock,” the Uber driver’s own insurance policy typically applies.

Do not speak with an insurance company or lawyer representing another party without talking to a lawyer first

After an Uber accident, you may be contacted by an insurance company or by an attorney representing another party. It could be the company that provides Uber’s insurance, the driver’s insurance company, or the insurance company covering a third party. You should not speak with them without an experienced Hazleton Uber accident attorney; you can politely inform them that you’d like to reschedule your conversation until after you’ve had the chance to speak to an attorney.

While it may seem silly, it is very easy to accidentally waive certain rights in these conversations, or limit your ability to recover all the money to which you may be entitled. For that reason, you should always check with an attorney before signing anything or talking to anyone after an accident in which you were

What to Do After A Rideshare Accident?

Even the best-rated rideshare drivers can make mistakes. If you find yourself in a rideshare accident in Hazleton, here are a few things you should do:

  • Make a police report: Contact the police right away and make a report. You will need this for your insurance company and, if it comes to it, your lawsuit. Do not let your driver, another passenger, or a third party convince you not to file a police report.
  • Seek medical attention: Even if you do not think you were injured, make sure to seek medical attention and have yourself checked out by a doctor. Sometimes, the symptoms from an injury caused by a car accident can creep up days, or even weeks, later, and you want to be prepared. Seeking medical attention will help your case as well, as it will provide a documented source of the damage caused by the rideshare driver’s careless driving.
  • Document everything: Take pictures, take down the names of drivers and witnesses, and document everything. You should also try to reduce any conversation to writing.
  • Contact the rideshare company: You will need to contact the rideshare company to let them know what happened. You can usually report the crash either through the app or online. For example, Uber lets customers and drivers report online by filling out a form.
  • Do not talk to opposing insurance companies: While it is okay to speak with your own insurance company, you do not want to talk to anyone else’s. They may try to get you to admit fault or waive your rights. Even when discussing the incident with your own insurance company, it’s best to memorialize all live conversations in writing. For example, if you discuss the accident with your insurance company, ask for an email address to which you can direct follow-up questions. Then, after the conversation, you can go ahead and respond to that email address, thanking the person for their time and summarizing the conversation. This way, there is a record of what was discussed. You can use this method to reduce to writing any important conversation that you have in the moments and days after an accident.

Hazleton rideshare accident lawyer speaking with another attorney

What Evidence Do I Need For a Rideshare Accident?

You should photograph any injuries you suffer. After the accident, try to obtain a copy of the accident report from the police and, if necessary, have your insurance company perform a valuation of the damage.

Keep track of all of your out-of-pocket expenses and any work or activities you miss. Maintain a journal or log of all of your doctor’s visits, test results, prescriptions, treatments, or other relevant medical information from the doctor.

While you may think you can remember these facts, as time goes on, and as you attend more and more appointments related to the accident, the exact dates and purpose of doctor’s appointments may become hazy.

Furthermore, it’s easy to forget about small expenses, especially early on. But, these expenses add up and are important to fully capture all the damages that you may be able to recover.

How Can Munley Help After a Ridesharing Accident in Hazleton

If you were involved in a rideshare accident in Hazleton, it’s always best to speak with an experienced Hazleton rideshare accident lawyer to learn what your options are and what your next steps should be. Munley Law has been handling all types of car accident cases throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania. We understand how complex these cases can be and will work hard to make sure you are properly compensated for your injuries.

Don’t delay. Contact our Hazleton personal injury lawyers today to schedule a free consultation. We are available online as well as by phone. You don’t pay unless we win your case.

Do I Have A Case?

If you think you may have a personal injury case, contact us now for a FREE consultation.

    Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys

    197 N Cedar St.
    Hazleton, PA 18201
    (570) 536-9498

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