Whether for business or pleasure, commuting in Florida is a breeze thanks to rideshare services. Though these services are a reliable means of transportation, they are not perfect, and an accident can still happen at any time. When this happens, passengers who suffer injuries may be unsure who to hold accountable.
What is a rideshare service?
Rideshare services like Uber and Lyft allow customers to book a car and driver that will get them where they need to. It’s a convenient alternative to waiting for and hailing a cab. Rideshare drivers are typically not employees but independent contractors and use their own vehicles.
Florida law requires rideshare companies to carry liability insurance. Its purpose is to help cover any damages or injuries sustained by involved parties, including passengers or riders. The drivers must also have auto insurance coverage to provide rideshare services.
Who pays for passenger injuries?
Trauma, medical expenses, income loss from time away from work, and other damages are all possible outcomes of a vehicle accident.
After an accident in Florida, a passenger can use their own personal injury protection (PIP) to help cover medical costs. If they suffer severe injuries, however, that might not be enough. In that case, the passenger may choose to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault parties.
A ride-sharing accident can have several responsible parties, including the rideshare company, the driver and other third parties who may have had a role in the collision. Since ride-sharing companies have liability insurance, they are typically the first to be held liable in an accident, followed by the driver.
A driver may be fully liable for damages if they were carrying the passenger but were not working or logged into the ride-sharing app. In this case, the passenger may seek compensation from the driver’ and their personal insurance coverage rather than the ride-sharing company.
Claiming damages following a rideshare accident is sometimes difficult and time-consuming for injured passengers. Seeking legal counsel and familiarity with state ride-sharing and liability statutes may help.