When an Uber or Lyft vehicle is involved in an accident in New York City, the legal landscape is different than a typical crash between privately owned vehicles. If you’re hurt in a rideshare accident, it is necessary to figure out which party was at fault and who is legally liable, including the driver, the rideshare company or perhaps both.
The complexity of New York City rideshare accidents is due to these factors:
- The drivers operate as independent contractors, not employees of the rideshare company
- Rideshare companies have unique operating regulations
- Insurance requirements in New York City are different than for those in other areas of New York state. The minimum liability coverage for rideshare drivers in the city is only $100,000 per victim, compare with $1.25 million elsewhere in the state
- Uber and Lyft carry commercial liability insurance for their drivers, but coverage limits are different depending on whether the driver already has a passenger or is on call or traveling to a pick up
The combination of these factors leaves the injured rider in the position of having to pursue all recovery possible from the driver, the rideshare company and perhaps other parties and insurers. Additionally, where liability is determined, insurance policy limits may fall well short of the actual damages. This is true whether you are a rideshare vehicle passenger or the driver or passenger in another vehicle involved.
The best approach when you are involved in a rideshare accident is to:
- Gather as much information at the scene as possible, including pictures
- Get each driver’s license and insurance information
- Determine if there are any witnesses and speak with them
- Report the incident to the police
- Report the incident to the rideshare company
- Get a copy of the police officer’s accident report
- Consult with an experienced rideshare accident attorney
Unfortunately, rideshare passengers may be injured too seriously to do anything at the scene or may be unaware of what they should do to protect themselves. Serious injuries too often are left undercompensated. Don’t let that happen to you. First and foremost, get the best medical treatment you need to recover as fully as possible. Then, get legal advice from an experienced advocate so you can to receive the compensation you deserve.
Goldberg Sager & Associates in Brooklyn understands the laws governing New York City rideshare accidents and will zealously represent you in pursuing your injury claims. Contact us online or call 718-514-9516 to schedule an initial consultation.