Rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft are very popular in Santa Monica and throughout the country. Many people use these services as alternatives to taxis and public transit, and they are often available when traditional transportation options are not. However, it is crucial for all rideshare customers to know they face the same risks in a rideshare driver’s car as they would in any other vehicle.
If you or a loved one is involved in an accident with a rideshare driver, either as a passenger in a rideshare driver’s vehicle or while operating your own vehicle, you could face a much more challenging recovery process than you would after a standard motor vehicle accident. A Santa Monica rideshare accident attorney is an invaluable asset in this situation.
Heimanson & Wolf, LLP, have years of experience handling all types of personal injury cases in Santa Monica, including those arising from rideshare accidents and all other types of vehicle accidents. Your recovery is likely to start with an insurance claim, and all rideshare companies must have auto insurance that meets specific coverage requirements. However, insurance alone may not fully compensate you for your losses, in which case you must file a personal injury claim against the driver responsible for your accident. Our firm can assist you with all the recovery efforts you must attempt after a rideshare accident, helping you maximize your compensation.
Uber and Lyft have almost identical insurance policies, and this insurance works in different ways depending on when an accident involving a rideshare driver occurs. Both companies require their drivers to have their own auto insurance policies, as required for all drivers under California law. If a rideshare driver is not marked as available for a ride request in their driver app and they are driving for personal reasons, their personal auto insurance would apply if they cause an accident.
Once a rideshare driver is logged into their driver app and marked as available for a passenger’s ride request, the first level of the rideshare company’s insurance will apply if they cause an accident. At this coverage tier, the insurance provides up to $50,000 in bodily injury liability coverage for a single person, increased to a maximum of $100,000 in bodily injury liability coverage if a single accident injures multiple people. Additionally, the policy can provide up to $25,000 in property damage liability for vehicle repairs and other property losses resulting from the accident.
After the rideshare driver has picked up a passenger, the second level of the rideshare company’s insurance will apply until the passenger has been delivered to their destination. At this tier of coverage, the rideshare company’s insurance provides up to $1 million as third-party liability coverage. This means that the at-fault driver’s personal auto insurance will pay for victims’ damages, and once it has been exhausted, the rideshare company’s insurance will cover the remaining damages.
Dealing with insurance companies is rarely easy, and while the full scope of coverage provided under a rideshare company’s auto insurance policy may seem like more than enough to fully compensate your losses, this may not be the case if you suffered a traumatic brain injury or another catastrophic injury that entails substantial economic damages. When you choose Heimanson & Wolf, LLP, as your legal representation, we will seek the maximum amount of compensation possible through insurance, but if this isn’t enough to fully compensate your damages, we can prepare a personal injury suit for you against the at-fault driver.
The state’s personal injury laws say the victim of any personal injury has the right to seek repayment of all the economic losses they sustained because of a defendant’s misconduct or negligence. Your rideshare accident may have occurred from an act of negligence such as distracted driving or a moving violation, or it may have been the result of intentional and illegal misconduct like driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Your Santa Monica rideshare accident attorney can help prove exactly how your accident occurred and identify the party or parties responsible. After recovering as much compensation as you can through insurance, you can proceed with filing your personal injury claim against the at-fault driver. With this civil suit, you could potentially recover compensation for the following:
The team at Heimanson & Wolf, LLP, approaches every case we accept with the goal of securing as much compensation as the law allows for our client. Our firm has cultivated a strong professional record as a leading choice for personal injury counsel in the Santa Monica area, and we have won many significant case awards for past clients. We are ready to apply our professional resources and experience to handle your rideshare accident case as effectively as possible.
California enforces a pure comparative negligence law that applies to any civil case in which the plaintiff bears partial liability for the resulting damages. If an investigation into your rideshare accident claim reveals that you are partially responsible for the accident, this could compromise your ability to file an auto insurance claim, but you can still seek compensation for your losses through a personal injury claim. However, the percentage of fault you bear for the accident will be deducted from your final case award.
You typically only have a few days in which to notify the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier of an accident, but you do not necessarily need to file the claim right away. As long as you meet the notification time limit, you can tell the insurance company that you must speak with your attorney before discussing any type of settlement. Notify the other driver’s insurance carrier about the accident, and then contact an attorney you can trust right away.
Under the state’s personal injury laws, the party responsible for causing your injury is liable for any and all economic damages they inflicted on you and the pain and suffering they caused. Even if you have a firm understanding of the total claimable damages resulting from your accident, it is crucial to seek counsel from an experienced Santa Monica rideshare accident attorney to have the highest chance of maximizing your recovery.
It’s possible for you to resolve your impending rideshare accident case through an insurance claim, but it is also possible that you will need to file a personal injury claim to ensure full compensation for your damages. Your Santa Monica rideshare accident attorney can offer an estimate of how long your recovery is likely to take. The main determining factor when it comes to your case’s timetable is whether the at-fault driver accepts responsibility and agrees to settlement negotiations.
There is no cause for concern when it comes to the cost of legal representation if you choose Heimanson & Wolf, LLP, to represent your case. We take personal injury clients on a contingency fee basis, so you do not pay any legal fees until we win your case. Additionally, the fee you pay is a percentage of the final compensation we secure for you. This ensures you do not pay more in legal expenses than you recover in compensation.
The attorneys at Heimanson & Wolf, LLP, have the professional legal experience, skills, and resources you want to have on your side when you face the complex series of legal proceedings likely to follow a rideshare accident in Santa Monica. The sooner you secure trustworthy legal counsel, the sooner you can start working toward the compensation you rightfully deserve for your damages. Contact Heimanson & Wolf, LLP, today and schedule your consultation with a Santa Monica rideshare accident attorney to start your recovery.