Please bear in mind that this is only intended to be a general overview and should not be mistaken as legal advice. As helpful as I hope this article is for you, do not use it as a substitute for legal consultation or use it as justification to forgo representation by an Uber or Lyft claims attorney.
Can I sue Uber or Lyft directly?
In the abstract, you can sue Uber or Lyft directly.
Now, whether or not you can is another matter. Several factors play into this.
For instance, passengers have a significantly different liability than drivers do. Also, drivers have drastically different liabilities depending on whether they are at fault or not, as well as when the accident occurred.
That said, it is essential to understand the many realities that exist beneath the surface of these cases, if you will.
Ride-sharing drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft are independent contractors. In order to drive for Uber and Lyft, they must have their own auto insurance. Despite this, the company has its own auto insurance coverage in place as well.
The company’s insurance is only applicable to specific periods of time, kicking in once a driver begins driving a passenger to their destination. Once they arrive at the final destination, it is no longer in effect.
This being the case, that is, since ride-sharing drivers are independent contractors with their own insurance, ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft take great effort to dodge liability. If the driver is at fault for the accident, the company can cover liability, collision, and medical damages. If they are not deemed as being at fault, the company can cover liability, collision, uninsured/underinsured, and medical.
In summary, if you are injured as a passenger in an Uber or Lyft driver’s vehicle, suing the company is not at all out of the realm of paths you could take.
Can I sue the driver of the Uber or Lyft vehicle?
You can sue the Uber or Lyft driver. In fact, in many instances, you would sue them before the company if you sued the company at all. This is because the driver theoretically has their own insurance.
How do I file a claim against Uber or Lyft?
Since these types of cases are involved and difficult, especially if you have no previous experience with them, I strongly advise not even entertaining the thought of attempting to file a claim against Uber or Lyft on your own.
All the moving parts and several parties involved aside, big companies like Uber and Lyft are known not to take claims from self-representing individuals seriously. Attempting to file a claim on your own is like shooting yourself in the foot.
This is to say, if you want to file a claim, contact an Uber and Lyft lawyer to get things started. They will act on your behalf and frame your claim as best as possible when filing.
Who is responsible for paying for my medical bills and other damages?
This depends on the specific circumstances of your case. If the driver is at fault, their insurance will likely pay for your damages. You may legally be able to hold the ride-sharing company responsible.
How do I know if I have a strong case?
As a passenger, you typically have a strong case since you were not actively involved in the accident.
How much is my case worth?
Consulting with an Uber and Lyft lawyer is the best way to determine the worth of your case. Several factors play into this, such as the total amount of damages incurred.
How long will it take to resolve my case?
The duration of your case depends on many factors, such as the number and intensity of damages. Severe injuries will likely require more time to diagnose, increasing the length of your case.
What are my legal options if I disagree with the settlement offered by Uber or Lyft?
Generally speaking, you could reject a settlement offer and escalate your case. This is all I can advise in answer to this question here, however. There are too many factors specific to each case to advise further here. Counsel from an Uber or Lyft lawyer will be critical to weighing your options.