Steven A. Bagen | November 16, 2023 | Car Accidents
More and more today, visitors and locals rely on ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft for their transportation needs. However, with additional ridesharing vehicles on the road comes the possibility of motor vehicle accidents involving these vehicles.
If you suffered injuries in an Uber accident, you may pursue monetary compensation. In some cases, you can file a claim under the Uber driver’s car insurance policy if they caused the accident. At other times, you can pursue compensation from an Uber corporate policy.
Upon suffering injuries in an Uber car accident, consult a skilled rideshare accident lawyer in your area as quickly as possible. Your attorney can review your legal options with you and pursue the compensation you need to become whole again. Your lawyer can also handle all settlement negotiations with insurance companies on your behalf or litigate your case in the court system if that becomes necessary.
How Do Uber Accidents Usually Happen?
Uber car accidents frequently happen when one or more drivers behave negligently. In some cases, a negligent Uber driver causes the accident, while at other times, a third-party driver causes the accident and resulting injuries.
In most situations, car accidents directly result from a driver’s negligence when they violate one or more traffic laws or traffic laws. For example, a driver may cause an accident when they fail to use their turn signal, fail to use their rearview and side view mirrors, speed, or fail to yield the right-of-way to another vehicle at the proper time, such as by running a stop sign or red traffic light.
A car accident may also happen when people drive recklessly. For example, to move ahead of slower-moving traffic, a driver might tailgate other vehicles, pass other vehicles in a no-passing zone, or weave in and out of travel lanes. However, these reckless driving maneuvers may cause an accident with one or more vehicles.
A car crash can also occur when a driver operates their vehicle while they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. A legally intoxicated passenger vehicle operator’s blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, reaches a level of 0.08 percent or higher. However, if the individual operates a commercial vehicle or is under 21, the law typically holds them to a stricter legal standard.
A legally intoxicated driver is far less likely to drive carefully and safely. They might inadvertently cause a car accident due to their limited vision and depth perception, lack of coordination, or lack of concentration while behind the wheel. An intoxicated driver may also suffer from delayed reflexes and reaction time that prevents them from driving safely and carefully.
Finally, some motor vehicle crashes result from distracted or inattentive driving. When a driver does not give 100 percent of their attention to the road, they may cause an accident that injures others.
Common types of distracted driving include texting and driving, applying makeup or combing one’s hair while driving, eating and drinking while behind the wheel, roughhousing with vehicle passengers, or programming a GPS navigation system. All these activities may cause a driver to lose their mental focus and take their eyes off the road, causing a serious crash.
If you suffered injuries in an Uber accident that resulted from an Uber driver or third-party driver’s negligence, seek legal help as quickly as possible. A car accident attorney in your area can promptly investigate your accident and chart a course for moving your case forward successfully. Your lawyer may also gather the documents necessary to prove your case and assemble those documents into a settlement demand package for the insurance company to review.
Common Injuries in an Uber Collision
Just as in any other motor vehicle accident scenario, victims of Uber accidents frequently stand to suffer extremely serious injuries. The specific injuries an Uber accident victim suffers will often vary considerably from case to case, depending upon the accident circumstances.
In general, the more forceful a collision, the greater the injuries that an Uber accident victim will suffer.
Other factors that may influence the nature and extent of an accident victim’s injuries include the number of vehicles involved, the type of accident that occurs, where the accident victim is sitting in the vehicle, and how their body moves at the time of the accident.
Common injuries may include internal bleeding and organ damage, spinal cord and paralysis injuries, open lacerations, bruises, bone fractures, soft tissue contusions, rib fractures, facial injuries, mouth and teeth injuries, traumatic head and brain injuries, and cognitive impairments.
If you suffered one or more of these injuries in a recent Uber accident, you might receive various types of monetary compensation.
To increase your chances of achieving a full recovery and securing favorable monetary compensation, seek early, frequent, and continuous treatment for injuries sustained in the accident. Specifically, follow through with any medical treatment regimen that your healthcare provider prescribes.
Depending upon your injuries, you might need to consult medical professionals, such as an orthopedic doctor, eye doctor, or neurologist. You may also need to undergo a medical procedure, such as surgery, and attend physical therapy sessions afterward.
While you focus your attention on getting the medical treatment that you need, your Uber accident attorney can investigate your claim, gather important documents, and assemble these documents into a settlement demand package that the insurance company adjuster can review.
Potentially Liable Parties in an Uber Accident
You may hold several individuals and entities responsible for an accident with an Uber vehicle.
When an individual drives for Uber, they must maintain their motor vehicle policy of insurance. Therefore, if an Uber driver negligently causes an accident, their insurance policy is typically primary.
However, in certain situations, Uber corporate may step in and supply the necessary insurance coverage. The insurance policy limits that Uber provides include $50,000 per accident, $100,000 per occurrence, and $25,000 for property damage.
The Uber policy may come into play when a third-party drives carelessly.
A skilled Uber accident lawyer can determine the policy that applies, given the unique facts and circumstances of your Uber accident case. Your lawyer can then file the appropriate claim with the proper insurance company.
Filing an Insurance Claim After an Uber Accident
An Uber accident attorney can file a claim seeking the monetary compensation you deserve for your injuries.
First, your lawyer can draft a settlement demand letter that demands monetary compensation within the applicable insurance policy limits.
To arrive at a settlement demand number, your lawyer will consider your overall medical expenses, lost earnings, and potential pain and suffering award. In addition to a settlement demand letter, your lawyer will assemble a settlement demand package that may include copies of the police report, medical treatment records, medical bills, witness statements, photographs of property damage, and your visible injuries.
Once the insurance company receives these documents, they might offer to resolve your case. However, your attorney will typically need to negotiate with the adjuster to convince them to increase their offer. Most first-time settlement offers from insurance companies are far below the true value of the personal injury case.
Making these low offers will assess whether the accident victim is in a hurry to resolve their case and willing to accept a low amount of money. Insurance companies want to offer as little monetary compensation as possible to resolve a claim, allowing them to keep their money in-house.
An Uber accident attorney can aggressively negotiate on your behalf for a higher settlement offer or, if necessary, take the insurance company to court. To convince the insurance company to offer more money, your lawyer may point to favorable medical records or professional reports and downplay any negative aspects of your case, such as pre-existing injuries.
If litigation becomes necessary in your case, your lawyer will file a lawsuit in the court system and handle every aspect of the process for you, including answering written interrogatories from the defense attorney in your case. Your lawyer can also represent you at discovery depositions, settlement conferences, and other litigation proceedings.
If the litigation doesn’t settle your case, your lawyer can take your case to a civil jury trial. At trial, your lawyer will call witnesses and present evidence on your behalf. The jury will then decide the amount of monetary compensation to award you for your Uber accident injuries.
Instead of taking your case to a jury trial, your lawyer can pursue alternative dispute resolution, such as mediation or binding arbitration. In many Uber accident cases, binding arbitration provides a good alternative to a civil jury trial. During binding arbitration, the parties present evidence to a neutral arbitrator outside a courtroom. The arbitrator then decides the issue of monetary damages in the case.
Recovering Monetary Damages for Uber Accident Injuries
Upon suffering injuries in an Uber accident, accident victims may incur high medical bills, lost income, and other significant expenses. Fortunately, if they can satisfy the legal burden of proof in their case, they can recover monetary damages.
First, they can pursue economic damages to compensate for their out-of-pocket losses. Economic damages typically compensate accident victims for their medical expenses, lost earnings, and loss of earning capacity.
Additionally, an Uber accident victim can recover compensation for their intangible losses, such as mental distress, permanent disability or disfigurement, permanent cognitive impairment, inconvenience, pain and suffering, lost quality of life, loss of use of a body part, long-term care costs, and loss of spousal companionship and consortium.
Your attorney can calculate the value of your case so that you have reasonable expectations for the case outcome and can prepare accordingly.
Contact an Uber Accident Attorney in Your Area Today
Victims of Uber accidents may file several different types of claims and recover compensable monetary damages for their injuries. However, to increase your chances of obtaining a favorable settlement award or litigation result, contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible.
Car accident victims have only two years from their accident date to file a car accident lawsuit for monetary damages. Absent skilled circumstances, if an accident victim does not file a lawsuit on time, they will forever waive their right to recover monetary damages for their injuries.
Once a car accident lawyer enters an appearance on your behalf, they can start advocating for you. Specifically, your lawyer can file a claim with the appropriate insurance company, aggressively negotiate for a favorable settlement offer, or litigate your case to an efficient resolution in court.