Can I Sue If an Uber or Lyft Rideshare Driver Hit My Car?

Determining fault following a car accident can be challenging enough. However, identifying fault can be even more challenging when the at-fault party drives for a rideshare company like Uber or Lyft. 

Can you sue Uber or Lyft after a rideshare accident, or is another party at fault? Contact a rideshare accident attorney for assistance with your case. 

Florida’s No-Fault Policy

First, you should know Florida’s no-fault rule regarding car accidents. Many people are confused as to what “no-fault” means with regard to car accident liability.

Just because Florida is considered a “no-fault” state does not mean that a negligent driver walks away without responsibility.  

What “no-fault” really means is that the parties involved file claims with their own insurance companies for Personal Injury Protection benefits. Called PIP for short, these benefits pay up to $10,000 of your medical bills and lost wages. Suppose your doctors determine that you’ve sustained a permanent injury as a result of the negligent driver’s actions. In that case, you have the right to recover from the at-fault party’s insurance company for your pain and suffering from those injuries. If you have not sustained a permanent injury, you are limited to collecting only your out-of-pocket medical expenses. 

If your injuries meet Florida’s serious injury threshold, you may be able to seek compensation through a third-party claim or lawsuit. 

Rideshare Company Insurance Policies

You could consider a third-party claim if your rideshare accident meets Florida’s injury threshold. But whose insurance company is responsible: the rideshare company, the driver’s, or both? 

The answer depends on several factors, including the company the driver was working for. Uber currently has up to a $1 million insurance policy covering medical costs for passengers, cyclists, pedestrians, and other injured parties in an accident their drivers cause. Uber can change these limits at any time. Lyft also has a similar third-party liability insurance policy.

However, this coverage doesn’t always automatically extend to you in an accident where an Uber or Lyft driver struck your vehicle. A few different scenarios may be at play:

  • The driver was offline, or their app was off. Uber’s insurance coverage would not extend to the driver if the driver was not actively driving for Uber at the time of the accident. 
  • The driver was available or waiting for a ride request. If the driver had their Uber app open and actively awaited ride requests, Uber’s auto insurance policy could cover the accident.
  • The driver was en route to pick up riders or had passengers: Uber’s liability policy would apply to accidents where the Uber driver was driving to pick up passengers or had them in their vehicle. 

The policy limits available depend on the status the driver was in at the time of the crash. These rules are similar to other rideshare apps, but you should check their exact insurance policies and talk to your rideshare accident attorney to be sure. 

Can You Sue Lyft or Uber After an Accident? 

While Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare companies have liability coverage to cover accidents their drivers cause, they aren’t liable for these accidents the same way a truck company is liable for its drivers’ accidents. 

Uber and Lyft drivers are typically independent contractors, not W-2 employees. If you’re considering legal action after an accident with a rideshare vehicle, you may need to sue the driver directly, not their rideshare company. If you’re only considering an insurance claim covering the extra expenses beyond your personal injury protection policy, the rideshare company’s liability insurance may cover you. 

Consult a Rideshare Accident Attorney in Florida 

At Warner & Fitzmartin, we’re well-versed in the intricacies of rideshare accidents in Florida. We can help you seek compensation for medical bills, physical damage, pain and suffering, and other expenses. 

Call us today at (561) 816-5983 to schedule your free case evaluation.

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