When a brand name becomes an almost generic verb, you know it has become a huge business. Just as people “Google” information, or as they used to “Xerox” a document, millions of people now “Uber” somewhere every year. In fact, by one estimate, ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft have driven passengers the equivalent distance of a round-trip to Saturn over the past five years alone. That’s about 1.5 billion miles.
With that much time spent on the road, it is almost inevitable that ride-sharing drivers will get in accidents. When those accidents lead to injuries to passengers, other drivers, or pedestrians, holding the driver and the ride-sharing company accountable and recovering compensation can be much more challenging than in other accidents.
At Alley, Clark & Greiwe, we know that ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft try to insulate themselves from responsibility for the negligence of their drivers. Hiding behind legal fictions and restrictive insurance policies, these companies may try to say they have no liability for driver negligence and leave victims to seek compensation from drivers who may be significantly underinsured.
We see through these efforts and know how to hold these companies accountable for their drivers’ negligence. Our Tampa car accident lawyers have significant experience recovering compensation for Uber and Lyft accident injury victims.
How Are Ride-Sharing Accidents Different?
Uber and Lyft drivers are private individuals who use their own cars when picking up, driving, and dropping off passengers who request rides with the rideshare company’s phone app. They are particularly prone to accidents for several reasons, including:
- Lack of training
- Distracted driving from looking at their phones for ride requests and directions
- Driver fatigue from staying on the road too long
Both companies take the position that their drivers are independent contractors, not employees. Uber and Lyft assert that all they do is provide an app for both drivers and passengers to use when requesting and paying for rides. Therefore, they argue, they are not responsible for a driver’s negligence.
This position got them in hot water with regulators and legislators, and both companies now carry liability insurance which may cover injuries caused by driver negligence. But that doesn’t mean that these companies still won’t try to limit their exposure and disclaim any responsibility.
A quick look at Uber’s insurance policy as they describe it makes clear how they will try to avoid liability. For example, if a driver’s app is turned off, Uber will claim that the driver is not “on-the-job” such that the company is not responsible for any accidents or injuries.
How We Can Help
If you’ve been hurt by a ride-sharing vehicle, knowing where to look for compensation can be complicated. Knowing how to defeat efforts by the ridesharing companies to shirk responsibility for your injuries can be even more so. That is why retaining experienced ridesharing injury lawyers is so critical.
Alley, Clark & Greiwe’s lawyers will neither be fooled nor intimidated by efforts to avoid liability. We pursue all available avenues of compensation on behalf of those injured by the negligence of Uber or Lyft drivers. We are relentless in our efforts on behalf of injury victims, and our lawyers’ talents and long record of success have led to them being consistently recognized by their peers as leaders in Florida personal injury litigation.
If you have been injured in an Uber, Lyft, or other ride-sharing accident, please call us today at 813-222-0977 or contact us online to arrange for your free initial consultation and case evaluation. We look forward to assisting you.