In the last several years, the popularity of ridesharing services has exploded all around the United States. And, to be sure, Northern California is the epicenter of ridesharing. The nation’s two largest ridesharing companies, Uber and Lyft, are both headquartered in the Bay Area. While both services offer efficient, cost-effective transportation, passengers must always be wary of the risk of an accident. Unfortunately, many Uber and Lyft vehicles in our region have been involved in very serious traffic collisions. An injury incurred during a rideshare may require an Uber accident lawyer.
At Wakeford Gelini, our Marin County Uber and Lyft accident lawyers fight to protect the rights and interests of ridesharing accident victims. Uber/Lyft accident claims are deeply complex. Our legal team has a full understanding of the law and regulations governing ridesharing services and accidents. We also have the skills and experience needed to help injured victims maximize their financial recovery. If you or a loved one was hurt in an Uber or Lyft crash, please do not hesitate to contact our Marin County office for immediate legal assistance.
What Should You Do After a Ridesharing Crash?
If you were involved in a serious Uber or Lyft accident in California, there are four things that you need to do you protect your health, safety, and legal rights:
1. Seek Medical Help: Nothing comes before your health. If you were injured in a crash, you should always seek professional medical advice. There are no exceptions. Not only is this crucial for your health, but you will not be able to bring an Uber/Lyft accident claim unless you have seen a doctor.
2. Contact Law Enforcement: All California accidents that result in physical injuries should be reported to law enforcement officials. Under state regulations, it is each driver’s responsibility to report the crash. That being said, even as an Uber/Lyft passenger, it is in your interest to make sure that police write an official accident report.
3. Report the Crash: Next, your crash must be reported to the ridesharing company. You should notify either Uber or Lyft that you were involved in a wreck. Generally, this can be done through your cell phone app. Though, you may need to call the company. In the unfortunate event that you are having trouble getting the company to take your claim seriously, you should speak to a Marin County Uber accident lawyer immediately. This is not acceptable.
4. Consult With an Attorney: Uber and Lyft are both billion-dollar companies that are represented by huge insurance companies. If you are bringing an accident injury claim, you should never go up against these large companies alone. After you notify the company regarding your accident, your next step is to consult with a Marin County Uber accident lawyer. Do this before you think about giving a statement.
Who is Legally Liable for an Uber/Lyft Accident?
California is a fault-based auto insurance state. The party (or parties) that caused that accident should be held financially liable for the resulting damages. Notably, Uber and Lyft accident claims are uniquely complex. These relatively young companies are governed by a developing area of law. One complicated factor is determining which insurance policy will be liable for covering your Uber/Lyft accident injuries. The answer depends on many different factors.
If you are a passenger who was injured in an accident, or if you were involved in an Uber/Lyft accident while the vehicle was carrying passengers, your claim should always be covered by Uber/Lyft commercial insurance policies. However, if you were not a passenger, and you were injured by a negligent Uber/Lyft vehicle without passengers in the car, your claim may fall under another policy.
In far too many cases, Uber and Lyft attempt to avoid liability for accidents. One tactic they use is to attempt to push claims towards the individual driver’s insurance policy. This is a potential problem for injured victims because individual policies will have far lower limits than the Uber or Lyft commercial policy.
The bottom line is that establishing liability for an Uber/Lyft accident, and sorting out the complex web of overlapping insurance policies, is a deeply complex process. It is imperative that injured victims are represented by a Bay Area Uber accident lawyer with experience handling Uber/Lyft accident claims.
How Long Do You Have to Bring a Car Accident Injury Claim?
All Marin County personal injury claims are governed by California’s statute of limitations (Cal. Code Civ. Pro § 335.1). In Uber and Lyft accident cases, victims have two years from the date of their crash to initiate a lawsuit. After the deadline expires, a claim will likely be prohibited as a matter of state law. In other words, your lawsuit will be automatically dismissed.
Going up against big companies like Uber and Lyft and their insurers is already difficult enough. To get full financial compensation, you must be able to present a compelling legal claim backed up by complete evidence. The longer you wait to take action, the more difficult it will be to get a successful result. Preserve your rights and protect your interests by consulting with an experienced Marin County car accident attorney immediately after your crash.
What Damages are Available to Uber/Lyft Accident Victims?
Under California law, car accident victims have a right to recover money equal to the full value of their damages. Compensation can be made available for both monetary losses and intangible, noneconomic damages. Unfortunately, this compensation can be difficult to recover. In an Uber/Lyft accident claim, you will likely be forced to deal with a large insurance company. Sadly, these insurers are incredibly difficult to deal with. Too often, they deny or severely undervalue personal injury claims. At Wakeford Gelini, our Marin Uber and Lyft accident attorneys work aggressively to hold the big ridesharing companies and their insurers accountable. We are prepared to help you recover the maximum financial compensation. You may be entitled to damages for:
- Emergency room bills;
- All related medical expenses;
- Rehabilitative treatment;
- Disability compensation;
- Loss of income;
- Pain and suffering;
- Mental anguish;
- Permanent disfigurement;
- Reduction in quality of life; and
- The wrongful death of a family member.
Contact a Marin County Uber Accident Lawyer Today
At Wakeford Gelini, our top-rated Bay Area Uber accident lawyer has extensive experience handling personal injury claims involving ridesharing vehicles, including Uber and Lyft. If you or a family member was hurt in an Uber accident or Lyft accident in Northern California, we can help.
To get a free, fully confidential review of your ridesharing accident claim, contact our legal team by calling (415) 578-3510 or reaching us to us through our website. With an office in Corte Madera, we represent car accident victims throughout Marin County, including in Belvedere, San Anselmo, San, Rafael, Sausalito, and Tiburon.