Apr 21, 2023 | CHASENBOSCOLO
Rideshare services like Uber undoubtedly offer convenience, but they also come with risk. Once you enter a vehicle provided by a rideshare service, you can only hope your driver will be competent and exercise reasonable care in getting you to your destination. As with any other trip you take as a passenger in a motor vehicle, you are always vulnerable to the unexpected once you hit the road.
Suppose you are involved in an accident during a ridesharing trip. In that case, you have slightly different legal options than you would after a car accident involving a private driver with a personal insurance policy. Let’s review how liability works and what compensation you can claim after getting hurt in an accident involving an Uber driver.
Is Uber Liable for Accidents?
In some cases, yes. You can hold Uber liable for accidents, but doing so is more complicated because different rules apply when determining insurance coverage. For instance, Uber is not liable if you get hurt in an accident with an Uber driver who is not actively using the Uber app. When drivers log off the Uber application, they are technically off-duty, and their personal liability insurance should cover accident-related losses.
Similarly, if an Uber driver gives a passenger a ride but isn’t on duty during the ride or gives the ride privately without going through Uber, the driver is solely liable. Uber will not pay for any losses from such an accident, so your only option will likely be to file a claim against the driver.
If the driver were logged into the app and waiting for a rideshare request when the accident occurred, Uber would only provide a limited amount of coverage, and only if the Uber driver’s personal coverage didn’t apply. Should a driver lack sufficient insurance coverage, Uber will pay for up to:
- $50,000 in bodily injury per person
- $100,000 in bodily injury per accident
- $25,000 in property damage per accident
If the Uber driver had a customer in the vehicle when the accident occurred, Uber’s $1,000,000 policy will cover any injuries or property damage resulting from an accident. If you are an Uber passenger and another driver was at fault for an accident, you can file a claim against the other driver’s insurance in addition to Uber’s insurance policy.
Does Uber Cover Accidents?
Yes. Uber covers accidents, but Uber’s liability insurance only applies in specific circumstances.
Maryland requires all ridesharing services to provide specific insurance coverage that applies from the moment an Uber driver logs into the ridesharing app or accepts a prearranged ride request. This coverage remains in effect until the driver either logs out of the app or completes a prearranged ride request.
This required coverage must consist of at least $1 million in liability coverage for death, bodily injury, and property damage. Rideshare companies must also provide uninsured motorist (UM) coverage and underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage. The minimum required amount of UM and UIM coverage for death, bodily injury, and property damage is also $1 million.
Under Virginia law, rideshare drivers must carry at least:
- $50,000 per person in bodily injury liability coverage
- $100,000 per incident in bodily injury liability coverage
- $25,000 per incident in property damage liability coverage
Rideshare companies must also provide these minimum coverage amounts if an Uber driver’s policy doesn’t apply in the event of an accident. And once an Uber driver accepts a ride request or picks up a passenger, Uber must provide at least $1 million in third-party liability coverage under Virginia law.
Can You Sue Uber for Accidents?
In rare cases, it might be possible to sue rideshare companies like Uber directly after a rideshare accident. One example is when Uber allows unsuitable drivers, such as drivers with histories of reckless driving or DUI charges, to operate on its behalf. In such cases, victims might be able to hold Uber directly responsible for their injuries and other losses.
However, it’s important to note that suing a rideshare company directly is difficult, as companies like Uber have strong legal teams to help them avoid liability. Additionally, each case is unique, and the specific circumstances of the accident and the driver’s actions can affect your options. If you get hurt in an Uber accident, consult an experienced car accident injury attorney who can help you navigate the legal process and pursue the compensation you deserve.
Contact an Experienced Uber Accident Attorney Today