Nobody should have to be concerned about sustaining serious injuries in an Uber or Lyft ride. Yet, ridesharing vehicles are commonly involved in motor vehicle collisions, and passengers in those vehicles, as well as other vehicle occupants in separate cars or pedestrians and bicyclists can be injured in these crashes. One of the first steps in seeking financial compensation after a car accident in which you were a driver or a passenger, or even if you were injured as a pedestrian or bicyclist, involves contacting your own auto insurer and filing a claim through your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. Indeed, since New York is a no-fault state for purposes of auto accidents and insurance claims, most people injured in motor vehicle collisions need to begin the claims process by filing an auto insurance claim through their own auto insurer.
Yet this process can be significantly more complicated when it involves a Lyft or Uber vehicle, which falls under the category of Transportation Network Company Services (or a TNC vehicle) under New York law. To be sure, the claims process for TNC vehicle accidents can require some separate or additional steps. Our Syracuse rideshare accident lawyers can help.
Contacting the Rideshare Company Insurer: When a Lyft or Uber Driver is Fulfilling a Ride Request
New York law requires rideshare companies like Lyft and Uber to have insurance policies that provide coverage for injuries that result from accidents during a rideshare driver’s working hours. Accordingly, if your injury occurred in an accident while your driver was logged into the rideshare app, then the company’s insurance policy may apply and you should contact the rideshare company’s insurance company to file a claim.
To be clear, when you are paying for a ride and are in the vehicle at the time of the accident, you may be eligible to file a claim through the company policy that provides coverage of $1,250,000 for damage in each accident for both personal injuries and property damage. Of course, you should contact a car accident lawyer first to seek assistance in filing your insurance claim through the Lyft or Uber company insurance policy.
Contacting the Rideshare Driver’s Personal Insurer: When the Rideshare Driver is No Longer Logged Into the App
If a driver is in the process of completing your ride, or if the driver is pulling up to pick you up from the airport when the accident and injury occur, the Lyft or Uber company insurance policy likely will apply, and you can work with your lawyer to file a claim through the company’s policy. If you were riding in a Lyft or Uber but the driver is off duty, you may still be eligible to seek compensation through the company insurance or through the driver’s personal auto insurance, but the coverage limits are much lower. In such cases, you should contact a lawyer to find out about which insurer you should contact to file a claim.
Contacting Your Own Insurance Company: Using Your Own PIP Coverage to Pay for Medical Bills
In some cases, customers who are insured in rideshare vehicles can file a claim through their own PIP coverage, but exclusions may apply if the driver was fulfilling a ride request at the time of the injury.
Contacting a New York Rideshare Accident Attorney: Negotiation with the Insurance Companies and Filing a Lawsuit after an Uber or Lyft Accident
Regardless of whether you are going to file an auto insurance claim with one of the above auto insurance companies we discussed or you want to find out more about your ability to file a lawsuit against an at-fault driver after getting hurt in a Lyft or Uber, you need to get in touch with a rideshare accident lawyer in Syracuse.
The insurance compensation system in the case of rideshare crashes is extremely complicated, and it can be difficult to determine with certainty when you are eligible for PIP coverage through your own insurer, when the Lyft or Uber insurance applies to your case, and when you may be able to seek compensation through the Lyft or Uber driver’s personal auto insurance. In some situations, it is possible that none of these auto insurance options will be able to provide you with adequate compensation, and it may be time to find out about your ability to file a lawsuit based on New York’s no-fault law. Our rideshare accident attorneys can assist you.
Seek Advice from a Rideshare Accident Attorney in Syracuse
Do you have questions or concerns about who to contact after a Lyft or Uber accident in Upstate New York? Our experienced Syracuse rideshare accident attorneys can assess your case for you today and help to ensure that you take all necessary steps after an injury in a Lyft or Uber accident in order to be eligible for financial compensation. Contact Powers & Santola, LLP today for more information about how we can assist you.