With Atlanta being one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States and many major highways running through its center, roadway congestion is far from uncommon. Ordering rideshare transportation can allow people to hand over the wheel and avoid confronting the traffic themselves. However, with this added convenience comes risk.
Car accidents involving Lyft or Uber can be tricky to handle. An Atlanta Uber/Lyft accident lawyer with Atlanta Personal Injury Law Group can help you handle it all. Our Atlanta personal injury lawyers can work to recover the compensation you are entitled to while helping you navigate the legal process.
Areas in Atlanta That Are at Higher Risk for Uber and Lyft Accidents
Areas with a higher population and more traffic are more likely to have car accidents overall. As such, the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety reports that car accidents are an increasingly serious problem in Fulton County. According to their data, 145 fatal accidents happened within the county in 2020 compared with 130 fatal accidents in 2016.
Atlanta’s Transportation Plan also reveals that injury crashes happen more often in certain parts of the city.
Some of the most dangerous intersections in Atlanta include:
- Marietta Street and Northside Drive
- Ponce De Leon Avenue and Clifton Road
- Cleveland Avenue and Metropolitan Parkway
- University Avenue and Metropolitan Avenue
- Barge Road and Campbellton
- Peachtree Road and Piedmont Avenue
- Joseph E. Boone Boulevard and Hamilton E. Holmes Drive
- Macon Drive and Cleveland Avenue
Uber and Lyft Crash Data
According to data from Uber, about 90 percent of all Uber accidents occur in urban areas, which includes developed areas with dense populations, such as Atlanta.
Uber also notes that about 97 fatal crashes involving their rideshare app occurred between 2017 and 2018, leading to about 107 deaths across the country. In those 107 accidents, 21 percent of the crash victims were the rider, 21 percent were the driver, and 58 percent were third-party victims.
From 2017 to 2019, 105 people reportedly died in fatal accidents involving a Lyft car. With more people using ridesharing apps, the number of accidents has increased by 2 to 3 percent in recent years, according to Business Insider. This means that if you were in a rideshare accident, you are not alone—and that rideshare companies should do a better job of screening drivers and enforcing safety measures.
Can I Sue Lyft or Uber for an Accident?
Because Lyft and Uber drivers are considered independent contractors and not employees, Uber or Lyft are less likely to be held legally responsible for the actions of their drivers. If a driver's negligence caused the crash, you could bring a lawsuit against the driver—but probably not Uber or Lyft.
While you generally cannot file a lawsuit against Lyft and Uber, these companies' liability insurance coverage is often an adequate recovery option.
Uber and Lyft drivers can sue other drivers for their injuries and vice versa.
Lyft and Uber accidents can produce significant insurance settlement amounts, as these companies carry large liability policies. An attorney can evaluate your case and provide you with counsel to help you get the compensation you need and deserve.
What Damages Can I Recover After an Uber or Lyft Accident?
People injured by someone else's negligence in a rideshare accident have the legal right to seek compensation under Georgia state law.
Victims may receive money to help with:
- Emergency room care, hospital bills, necessary surgery, medications, and more
- Rehabilitation and physical therapy for the injury
- Related medical expenses for the injury
- Loss of income
- A diminished earning ability
- Disabilities sustained during the accident
- Pain and suffering
- Disfigurement sustained during the accident
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Wrongful death (if you lost a loved one in a crash)
How Do I Prove Negligence for a Lyft or Uber Accident?
To prove negligence in a personal injury case, the plaintiff must show that the defendant failed to provide proper care or precaution while performing their duties.
This includes proving:
- The driver had a legal responsibility to protect you.
- The driver breached a legal obligation to reasonably protect their passengers and other drivers from harm.
- The negligence of the driver led to the accident.
- This led to your injuries and other losses, such as financial loss for medical bills, your inability to work, and your pain and suffering.
How Long After an Accident Can I Sue?
The statute of limitations is the deadline to sue for a personal injury case. In Georgia, this is two years after the accident. Therefore, go to a doctor right away following an accident. If you willingly ignore your injuries, this can hurt your case. You will need evidence that you were injured and a doctor can provide that.
Whose Insurance Applies in An Uber or Lyft Accident?
Rideshare apps require their drivers to carry liability auto insurance, which can be applied to cover injuries and other damages for both the driver and passenger. Depending on when and how the accident occurred, either the driver or the rideshare company’s insurance coverage will kick in and cover your losses.
An accident claim could involve multiple parties, such as:
- Lyft or Uber’s insurance company
- The third-party driver’s insurance company
- The insurance of any other person who collided with the rideshare vehicle
Recovering damages from a rideshare car accident is tricky but possible. An Atlanta Uber or Lyft accident lawyer from our team can help you handle the entire process.
How Does Lyft and Uber Insurance Work?
Uber and Lyft drivers receive supplemental insurance coverage, but this only applies when the app is on. A driver's personal car insurance only covers them when the app is off. If the app is on, they are waiting to accept a ride request, and they get into a crash, then Uber or Lyft will cover the accident only if the driver's personal insurance policy does not.
When a driver accepts a request from a passenger, full coverage from Uber’s and Lyft’s policy begins until they drop that passenger off at their destination and they exit the vehicle.
Lyft and Uber provide:
- Third-party liability when the rideshare driver is at fault
- Injuries caused by a non-rideshare driver who does not have insurance (and the Uber or Lyft driver is not at fault)
What Are My Insurance Options if I Am Injured as a Lyft or Uber Passenger?
When the Lyft or Uber driver is at fault for the accident, a passenger may have a right to recover compensation through Lyft or Uber’s liability policy.
However, if you were a driver in a crash with a Lyft or Uber driver and they had not signed on to the app, you may have to seek compensation from the driver's personal insurance policy. You may also file a lawsuit against the driver.
What Five Steps Should You Take After an Uber or Lyft Accident?
You need a diligent lawyer after a car accident involving a Lyft or Uber driver, as recovering damages after these accidents can involve complicated laws.
If you are in a Lyft or Uber accident:
- Seek medical attention. Someone injured in a motor vehicle collision should be evaluated by a medical professional to examine the extent of their injuries and have those injuries on record. Sometimes a serious injury is not readily apparent and will take time before showing symptoms. A doctor can determine if you need treatment for hard-to-spot injuries or those with delayed symptoms, like whiplash or concussions.
- Call 9-1-1. Georgia law requires reporting auto accidents to the local or state police. To seek compensation, you need an official police report.
- Document the scene. In addition to contacting the authorities, you should collect photos of the crash, any injuries sustained, and other pertinent information regarding the crash. This can also include writing the details of the accident down while the incident is still fresh in your mind.
- Inform Uber or Lyft of the accident. Accidents can be reported through Uber or Lyft's apps via the Safety Center for Lyft or Help for Uber. Keep a record of your initial report and the company's responses (or lack thereof) following the report. Drivers involved in an Uber or Lyft accident can also report the accident via Uber or Lyft’s websites.
- Contact an accident attorney. Uber and Lyft are major companies backed by corporate attorneys and insurance representatives. We advise anyone involved in an accident involving an Uber or Lyft vehicle in Atlanta to contact our team. We have the experience to help with your case.
Also, consider these tips below that are unique to drivers or passengers involved in rideshare accidents.
What Should Lyft or Uber Drivers Do After an Accident?
As with any accident, your first step should be to make sure everyone involved is safe. If nobody is seriously injured and if you can do so, move the car to the road's shoulder to help prevent more accidents. Turn on your vehicle's hazard lights to warn oncoming traffic of the hazard.
Get the other driver's information and the contact details of your passenger. Contact Uber or Lyft immediately to report the accident.
What Should Passengers Do After a Lyft or Uber Accident?
If you are injured as a passenger in a Lyft or Uber accident, you may want to take your case to a lawyer from our team. Dealing with Uber or Lyft on your own can be challenging, and we know how to seek the best possible compensation available in your case.
You should also follow the above five steps as well as:
- Collect the driver’s rideshare insurance information
- Collect their personal policy information
- Collect the contact information of any other drivers involved
What Should I Do if I Am Another Driver Involved in an Accident with a Rideshare Vehicle?
Depending on who is at fault in an accident, Uber or Lyft’s insurance policies may cover your bodily injuries and property damage. In addition to following the five general steps above, you should collect contact information for the driver, including the driver’s rideshare insurance and personal policy information.
Additionally, if Uber or Lyft contacts you to make a recorded statement about the crash, decline to do so. Be sure to avoid admitting fault for the crash in any comments you make. This call may be an attempt to lower your potential settlement or award. You can tell any insurance representatives to speak with your lawyer.
Injured in a Lyft or Uber Accident and Need Help Seeking a Settlement in Atlanta?
If you were in a collision involving a Lyft or Uber vehicle and need further assistance, an attorney at the Atlanta Personal Injury Law Group is here to help. We believe that accident victims deserve proper compensation for their injuries so they can get back to living their lives. We understand that insurance companies are hard to work with, and they may not always help you get what you need to take care of your injuries. We strive to fight to seek the financial compensation you deserve.
Atlanta Personal Injury Law Group - Atlanta Office
1900 Century Pl NE
Atlanta, GA 30345
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