Lakeland Uber Accident Attorneys
Ridesharing services like Uber offer people in Lakeland a convenient way to get to places. You might see Uber-related vehicles when you stop at local intersections or travel on Interstate 4. The city’s roads see high traffic volume each day.
With high traffic, there is a likelihood that some accidents might involve Uber drivers. The Uber driver could be responsible for your injuries. Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys can hold the liable party accountable.
Our firm has had success with all types of car accident cases. We have secured valuable settlements for our clients, and we will work to ensure you get what you deserve from your Uber accident claim. Contact our Lakeland Uber Accident Lawyer for a free consultation and let us answer any questions about your case.
Below is some information about the legal process following an Uber driver accident to get you started.
Table of Contents
What Leads to an Uber Accident?
People frequently use Uber and other ridesharing services across the country. Around 25 percent of the population uses Uber for daily commute in Florida alone.
Like any driver on the road, Uber driver accidents can occur for many reasons. Common causes include:
- Weather. Heavy rain, snow, sleet, and ice can make driving hazardous. A driver experiences reduced visibility and slippery roads. Major roads in Lakeland have a high risk since the area has frequent storms during the summer.
- High speeds. The Uber driver may have exceeded the speed limit leading up to the accident. Motorists have less time to react if they speed. With reduced time to stop, they could end up in a rear-end collision or hitting someone at an intersection.
- Distractions. Around 48,000 distracted driving collisions occur every year in Florida. Uber drivers usually use their phones or GPS devices to pick up and drop off passengers. When they look away from the road to monitor their devices, they risk an accident. Conversations with a rider or other actions in the car can also distract the driver.
- Unsafe turns. An Uber driver may feel pressured to get the passenger to their destination by a certain time. Rushing may cause the driver to make an unsafe turn and fail to yield to traffic. Making a left turn across traffic could cause a collision with the side of another vehicle.
Many variables affect the outcome of an accident. An Uber accident lawyer will collect and review evidence to determine how a crash occurs and all those involved. Our firm can work to determine who was negligent and, therefore, responsible for your injuries.
Filing an Uber Crash Claim
Uber drivers receive coverage from the ridesharing company. Typically, you would file a claim with Uber if the driver was on duty during the accident. The amount you recover depends on the other person’s actions at the time of the accident.
If the at-fault motorist was active on the Uber app, awaiting a rider, the Uber policy offers up to $50,000 in bodily injury per person. The policy also covers $25,000 for property damage. If the driver transported passengers, the coverage increases to $1 million.
If the app was off, Uber’s insurance does not apply. You would need to file a claim against the Uber driver’s insurer. If they fail to negotiate fairly and offer you enough to cover your damages, your lawyer can file a lawsuit against the insurer and driver.
Some people may try to file a lawsuit against Uber if their insurance claim gets denied. However, Uber drivers are independent contractors in many states, including Florida. As a result, Uber can argue it is not directly liable, and you would need to prove Uber was negligent in some way that resulted in the accident.
Who Can Sue in an Uber Accident Lawsuit?
If you are a passenger in an Uber, you can sue the driver for bodily harm in an accident. If you were in another vehicle involved in the crash, you still have a valid claim. Other parties involved can sue for damages as well. For instance, an injured pedestrian, a cyclist, or a property owner could file a lawsuit if they were injured or their property damaged in the crash.
What to Do After a Collision With an Uber Driver?
Whether you are a passenger, pedestrian, or another driver, you need to follow specific actions after an accident. What you do can impact your physical health and ability to pursue compensation for your damages.
Report the Crash
Once you and others are out of the way of traffic, you need to report the incident. The police should arrive on the scene to investigate the matter and collect statements. The courts do not allow police reports as evidence, but the documents provide valuable information in a lawsuit.
Police reports describe the weather and traffic conditions, and other details include the names of witnesses and a diagram of the collision. Your Uber accident lawyer can use this information during their investigation to support and corroborate your story.
If the driver was on duty, you should also report the incident to Uber. Their insurance policy could also provide compensation for your losses.
Documentation of the collision is necessary if the other side resists paying for damages. While at the accident scene, take many pictures of the damaged vehicles and surroundings. Try to get various angles and distances, and get images of visible injuries.
If you have torn clothing, do not throw it away. The visual evidence shows the crash did occur and how severe it was. If you have a dashcam, make sure to collect the footage. Take note of nearby street cameras or if the Uber driver has a dashcam. Your lawyer can gather this evidence on your behalf to build your claim.
Get Medical Help
After you call emergency services, an ambulance will likely come to provide care and transport injured people to the hospital. If you do not need an ambulance to drive you, still get an examination. A doctor can uncover any injuries you may have and document those injuries for future use in your claim.
A full examination and proper treatment show the damages to claim. You may not get sufficient reimbursement if you do not confirm your injuries and costs with a doctor.
Consult an Uber Accident Lawyer
The Uber driver’s insurance company may attempt to contact you. It is wise to reach out to a lawyer and allow them to handle all communication with the insurer. A Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorney can deal with the discussions and negotiations to ensure you receive fair treatment and maximum compensation.
Reasons to Get an Uber Accident Attorney
If you need to start an Uber accident lawsuit, an attorney is an important place to start. A lawyer raises the potential success of your case. However, some people hesitate to hire a lawyer for fear of legal fees. However, the benefits significantly outweigh any cost.
Speak to a lawyer to show:
- The Uber driver was negligent. Uber might argue they are not responsible for an accident. However, if Uber was negligent in its screening process, an unfit motorist could be allowed to drive for the company.
- Lack of proper regulations. Taxi companies have to adhere to strict rules. However, Uber and other ridesharing companies in Florida are Transportation Network Companies (TNC). TNCs deal with fewer legal policies. A lawyer can examine the lack of regulations and see how they impact your claim.
- The maximum value of your claim. A lawsuit settlement contains economic and non-economic damages. People can have difficulty calculating damages. A lawyer knows how to quantify your losses and makes sure you can get the most out of your claim.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Do You Have to File a Lawsuit?
Every state has a statute of limitations – a law that sets how long a party has to file a car accident lawsuit. In Florida, the deadline depends on the type of loss. If you sustained injuries, you have four years to begin your claim. Otherwise, you lose the ability to recover damages in civil court.
The same time limit applies to property damage to your vehicle and other personal items. However, you only have two years to file if a loved one dies at the fault of another driver. Your lawyer can help you begin the claim process as soon as possible to avoid an expired statute of limitations.
Even if you believe the claim will settle quickly, it is important to file early. Your recollection of the accident will likely be more accurate sooner after the crash. Additionally, the sooner you file, the more time your lawyer will have to build your case.
Should You Communicate With an Insurer?
The negligent party’s insurance company may call you to ask questions. The adjuster may request you give a recorded statement or sign a medical release form. The insurer may come across as if they want to help you.
Do not answer any questions or give a statement before speaking with an attorney. The adjuster may claim they need any of these things to resolve the claim faster, but they may twist your words against you to reduce or deny your claim.
Additionally, do not sign any papers, such as a medical release form. The insurance company may view your medical history and use it to blame your injuries on a prior condition or your fault. Some adjusters use intimidation tactics to convince victims to cooperate with requests.
Speak to an Uber accident attorney so they can handle the insurance adjusters, and you can focus on your recovery. If you need to talk to an insurer, we can guide you through what is safe to say or sign.
Do Uber Drivers Need to Meet Requirements to Drive?
The requirements to become an Uber driver depend on the state. The minimum requirements for residents of Lakeland include a valid driver’s license and an eligible four-door vehicle. The person has to be at least the minimum legal driving age to apply.
They also need to have a minimum of one year of driving experience. The requirement increases to three years if the applicant is under 25. Other criteria require the driver to show proof of residency and vehicle insurance.
Uber and other ridesharing companies have a screening process for potential workers. The process generally involves two background checks. These will provide a person’s driving history and show if they have had notable traffic violations in recent years. The driver must also pass a criminal background check.
Drivers have to pass background checks every year to continue accepting ride requests. However, there have been instances where an unqualified motorist passed the screening process, so your lawyer needs to review the driver’s qualifications.
What Damages Can You Recover?
While you should get your claim or lawsuit started quickly, you should not accept an early settlement from the insurer. The compensation you receive needs to cover your losses. You and your lawyer need time to establish the total damages in your claim.
Your claim should include wages lost during recovery. You can also claim if the accident affected your future income, including if you can no longer work or have to change jobs. Recoverable damages include current and potential future medical expenses and damage to your property.
Other non-economic damages include loss of quality of life, pain, suffering, and mental anguish. Your lawyer will help prove the total value of what you lost after a collision.
Is the Maximum Uber Coverage Policy Limit Enough?
A victim could receive up to $1 million if the Uber driver was picking up or transporting a rider. This may cover all expenses and losses. However, that amount may not cover everything.
A severe car accident could easily exceed the $1 million policy limit. If an acute injury becomes long-term or lasts for the rest of a person’s life, the costs can compound. Examples of long-term injuries include traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries.
You may need ongoing treatment, prescription medication, medical devices, or modifications to your home. The expenses may exceed $1 million, but the company will likely not provide more compensation. A lawyer can determine what other options you have to get additional financial support once you meet the policy limit.
Assistance Is a Phone Call Away
If an Uber driver’s negligence has injured you, you may have a valid claim. The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys team is ready to help you pursue the compensation you deserve. We have the experience needed to help you navigate the legal process and implement the proper strategy for your case.
Our lawyers dedicate themselves to getting the optimal result for clients. We stand by your side through every stage and are prepared to take your case to court if necessary. Contact us at (863) 230-8066 for your free consultation and start now on your path to recovery.
The Fernandez Firm – Lakeland
100 S Kentucky Ave #285
Lakeland, Florida, 33801
I was recently injured in an automobile accident. Contacting the Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys was the wisest choice I made. They navigated me through the process from beginning to end. The outcome was positive and painless. I appreciate the hard work of your firm and highly recommend anyone else in a similar situation to contact you.