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Did you know that there were 1 million Uber drivers in 2020? More and more people are using Uber to support their income by driving passengers, delivering food, or both. Add Lyft to the mix, and you have another 1 million Lyft drivers on the roads.

With the increase in the number of Uber drivers, there is also an increase in the risk of ending up in a car accident where you can be injured by an Uber or Lyft driver. In such a case, you can bring a personal injury claim against the ride-sharing company with the help of a car accident lawyer in California.

Keep on reading for everything you need to know if you get hit by an Uber or Lyft driver.

Who Is Responsible?

In a car accident claim, the responsibility depends on who was negligent in causing the accident. If you can show that the Uber or Lyft driver was at fault, then they may be liable for damages. These can include violating California driving laws, including running a stoplight or using the phone while driving.

You can end up in a situation where the rideshare company claims comparative negligence to minimize damages. This means that both parties are somehow at fault. This claim is used to reduce the total amount of damages claimed. Top-quality Uber accident lawyers can help you navigate this claim.

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What if Uber or Lyft Driver Caused the Accident?

If you’re in a situation where you were hurt from an Uber or Lyft accident injury, then you will have a claim against your Uber or Lyft driver in certain cases. The liability will depend on 3 different situations where the rideshare driver is either:

  1. Carrying or picking up a passenger or food delivery
  2. Turned on the app and is waiting for passenger or food delivery
  3. They haven’t turned on the app

Each of these situations will have different coverages under the driver’s insurance. For example, if the driver has not turned on his app, he won’t be a rideshare driver. He’ll just be any other regular driver. You will be dealing with insurance with lower coverage.

Where the driver is carrying or picking up passengers or has turned on the app and is waiting, you have a claim against the rideshare driver. In this case, the higher coverage insurance of a rideshare driver will apply, and you can recover more of your expenses.

Sometimes the driver may lie about not having turned on the app. You can relax because there’s a way to get electronic records to confirm whether he had turned on the app at that time. Make sure you document the times and details fully to help support your claim

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What Role Does Insurance Play in Personal Injury Claims?

All drivers in California are required to have minimum insurance. They must have either:

  • $15,000 for injury or death to one person
  • $30,000 for more than one person
  • $5,000 coverage for damage

For ride-sharing drivers, they will get additional coverage. If they are carrying or picking up passengers or food delivery, they can get minimum coverage of $1 million. If they are waiting for passengers or food delivery, then they can get contingent coverage of up to $50,000 per individual.

Remember that insurance companies will try different ways to avoid or reduce liability after an accident. You should prepare yourself by taking the right steps, including documenting everything fully and speaking to a car accident lawyer in California.

Can I Sue Uber or Lyft Directly?

Whether you can bring a claim against Uber or Lyft directly depends on whether the drivers are considered employees or independent contractors. Uber works hard to classify its drivers as independent contractors, but California has rules that make it harder.

In 2020, California passed Assembly Bill 5 (AB5) that makes it more difficult for Uber to classify drivers as employees. This bill is meant to protect rideshare drivers. Under AB5, for the rideshare driver to be an independent contractor, they must be:

  • Free from control or direction
  • Perform work outside of the usual course of the company’s business
  • Engaged in an independent business of the same nature as the company

If you can argue that the rideshare drivers were not independent contractors but employees, then you can bring a claim against Uber or Lyft for direct or vicarious liability. If this is the path you want to take, then you should consult an Uber/Lyft accident lawsuit expert. They can guide you on the best approach given current rules and case law.


What Cost Can I Recover?

You can recover all the expenses that you incurred. This can include medical bills, physical therapy, and compensation for disfigurement or loss of limb. Also, remember you can claim an amount for emotional harm and pain and suffering.

If you end up not being able to work because of your injuries, you can get your lost wages back. If it ends up that you can’t work at all, you can even get the cost of lost earning capacity.

In rare cases, you can get punitive damages. Punitive damages have a much higher standard where you need to show intentional harm or extreme recklessness. For example, if the company tried to hide or cover up its involvement.

Surviving family members can recover for damages of a loved one, such as funeral costs or other compensation for loss of companionship and support.

Contact Your Car Accident Lawyers in California Today

Now you know exactly when you can bring a personal injury claim against an Uber or Lyft driver. You know when the driver or the company is liable and how much they are usually insured for. Make sure to get names, contact information and document all details.

If you’re recovering from a car accident, then you don’t want to deal with the hassle of insurance companies and negligence claims. You want to focus on your health. This is where your expert car accident lawyers in California come in to help you with Uber/Lyft accident lawsuits. Contact us today for a free consultation.

For further information or to schedule a free, confidential case evaluation please contact Kash Legal today at 888.527.4128 visit to learn more.

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