If you are injured in an accident involving an Uber driver, you’ll want an experienced Fort Collins Uber Accident lawyer to represent you.
Uber has quickly become a popular alternative to taxis or driving yourself. It’s simple enough to use. When you need a ride, all you have to do is open the app and find an available driver near you. Convenience, however, does not necessarily equal safety. When you get into a car for an Uber ride, you are placing your safety in the hands of an independent driver who has had no special training.
Accidents can happen for a variety of reasons, including driver fatigue, speeding to the passenger’s destination or driver distraction while looking at the app. Since Uber drivers are independent contractors and not employees, filing a claim can be confusing without an experienced car accident attorney.
Can I Sue Uber After an Accident?
If you have been injured in an accident caused by an Uber driver, an attorney can file a claim for you. Your chances of recovery largely depend on whether you were an Uber passenger, a driver or passenger in another car, or a pedestrian. Uber drivers are independent contractors and not employees, so Uber will use every tactic they can to avoid paying damages.
If you are an Uber passenger and are injured in an accident, your injuries are likely not your fault. Proving that Uber is liable for damages should be fairly straightforward. The challenge comes with proving the seriousness of your injuries. Uber will not want to pay any more than they have to, so you will need an experienced Uber accident attorney to fight for you.
Driver or Passenger in Another Car
Depending on the circumstances of the accident, Uber may claim that their driver’s personal insurance has to pay. For example, Uber drivers are considered “off the clock” when they have not yet received a ride request. An attorney can file a claim for you against Uber’s insurance, the Uber driver’s insurance, or both.
You may be crossing the street in Fort Collins one day and be struck by an Uber car. Your chances of recovery are similar to those of a driver or passenger in another car. Depending on whether the Uber driver was “on the clock,” Uber’s insurance, the driver’s insurance or both may be liable for damages. An experienced attorney can deal with multiple insurance companies to make sure that you get the compensation you deserve.
Uber Insurance Requirements
Colorado law requires Uber drivers to carry one million dollars in liability coverage from the time they accept a ride request to the time they drop off the passenger. This insurance covers Uber passengers as well as drivers or passengers in another car.
There is less Uber insurance coverage if the Uber driver has not accepted a ride request and does not have a passenger in the car. If the Uber driver has opened the app and has indicated that they are available for a ride, Uber will cover some damages. In these cases, coverage includes $50,000 in damages per injured person, $100,000 total liability and $25,000 in property damage per accident.
If the Uber driver has not opened the app, Uber insurance will not pay damages. Since the driver is an independent contractor, Uber is liable only when their drivers have opened the app and are actively seeking ride requests, accepting requests or driving passengers.
Insurance companies will do whatever they can to avoid paying damages. One tactic is to claim that another company is the primary insurer so that you would have to file a claim against the other insurer first. The driver’s insurance company, for example, may claim that Uber insurance is primary. You’ll want to have an attorney on your side who knows how to deal with insurance companies.
What if a Third Party Caused the Accident?
Sometimes a third party causes an Uber car accident. If the car manufacturer installed defective parts that caused the accident, for example, they would be liable for damages. On the other hand, the driver may have been aware that brakes or lights needed repair. If the driver fails to have the car repaired and defective parts cause an accident, it can be difficult to identify the liable party.
Other third parties can be liable as well. A government agency, for example, could be liable if a poorly maintained road is the cause of an accident. Multiple third parties can be at fault in the same accident. A Fort Collins Uber accident lawyer will work diligently for you to determine who is at fault.
What to Do After an Uber Accident
To protect your rights, it’s important to know what to do if you’ve been in an Uber accident.
Obtain Driver Information
As with any car accident, write the names, contact information, driver’s license numbers, license plate numbers and insurance information of all drivers.
If you have a smartphone, take pictures of injuries, car damage, and your surroundings that will document facts of the accident.
Seek Medical Attention
Prompt medical attention is important for your health as well as creating a paper trail for your claim. Some injuries are not noticeable until days later, so seek medical help right away, even if you feel okay. The sooner you seek medical attention, the easier it will be to prove that the accident caused your injuries.
File Reports with Police and Uber
The police will only file an accident report if there are injuries or property damage worth more than $1,000. To create a record of the accident, you should file an accident report with the police as well as with Uber.
Once you have taken these steps, contact an attorney without delay.
Talk to an Uber Accident Attorney
If you’ve been injured in an Uber accident, you may be entitled to compensation including
- Medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Long-term disability.
Allen Accident Law will work hard so that you can focus on your recovery. Contact me for a free consultation.