Now that Uber vehicles have become common on the streets and highways of California, accidents are on the rise. Unlike other car accidents, Uber accidents are governed by complicated insurance rules. The best way to protect your rights after an Uber accident is to consult an experienced ridesharing attorney and follow these first steps after an Uber accident.
J&Y Law represents Uber accident victims throughout Northern and Southern California. If you have been injured in an accident with an Uber vehicle, you may be entitled to significant compensation. Nonetheless, the steps you take after the accident will have an impact on your claim.
What should your first steps be after an Uber accident?
Just as with any other accident, the first step is to call the police. The traffic collision report will be important evidence in your claim. If you were injured as a passenger, you can also report the accident directly to Uber on the “rate your ride” feature on app. If you were driving another vehicle and injured in a collision caused by an Uber driver, you should also report the accident to Uber.
In either case, you should also immediately seek medical attention. Failing to see a doctor may cause your injuries to worsen, and also prevent you from recovering damages. The medical report will be proof of the injuries you have sustained. It is also important to collect any additional information that may support your claim, including:
- The driver’s name and contact information
- The driver’s insurance information
- The names and contact information for any witnesses
If at all possible, you should also jot down your immediate thoughts and observations and take pictures of the accident scene, your injuries and damage to the cars. Any information you gather at the accident scene will support your claim.
How does insurance work in this scenario?
Given that Uber drivers are considered independent contractors, the company may attempt to deny any liability for the accident. Nonetheless, if you are injured as a passenger in an Uber accident, the company is required to carry a minimum of $1 million in liability coverage. If your injuries exceed that amount, you can also look to the $1 million in uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage Uber is required to carry.
When it comes to motor vehicle accidents involving Uber, the insurance rules are a bit more complicated because coverage hinges on the Uber driver’s status at the time of the collision. If the driver’s app is on, and the driver is waiting to be connected with a passenger, the driver’s automobile insurance will be the primary source of coverage. Keep in mind that drivers in California are only required to carry a mandatory minimum of auto insurance:
- $15,000 bodily injury coverage per person injured in an accident
- $30,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident
- $5,000 of property damage coverage per accident
If the Uber app is on and the driver is waiting to be connected to or traveling to retrieve a passenger, the driver must have additional coverage:
- $50,000 bodily injury liability coverage per person injured in an accident
- $100,000 of bodily injury liability coverage per accident
- $30,000 of property damage liability coverage per accident
Uber also provides $200,000 in additional liability insurance during this period. When a passenger is being transported, however, Uber’s $1 million in automobile insurance will be the primary coverage for any damages.
In any event, after the accident, you may be contacted by Uber’s insurer, James River Insurance Company. You should not give a statement to the claims adjuster — his or her role is to settle the claim for as little as possible. Any statement you provide may be used against you and prevent you from recovering compensation.
Why You Need A Ridesharing Attorney After an Uber Accident
The best first steps you can take to protect your welfare after an Uber accident in California is to contact J&Y Law. We have a working knowledge of the complicated insurance laws governing Uber accidents and a proven history of recovering meaningful compensation for injury victims. Our attorneys will represent you in any dealings with Uber’s insurer, the driver’s insurer, or both, and make sure that you receive the full value of your claim.
Whether you were injured as a passenger, a driver, a pedestrian or bicyclist, we believe no one should be forced to suffer after an Uber accident. When you work with us, you will not pay any attorneys’ fees unless we recover compensation for you. Please contact our office today for a free evaluation of your case.