Ridesharing — through services like Uber and Lyft — is a popular alternative to Canton, Ohio’s public transit or taxi service.
As the fastest-growing form of transportation in the country, it’s no wonder that many Canton residents rely on rideshares to get home after a night out, get to and from work while their car is in the shop, or transport a group of friends to a special event.
Like any other vehicle on the road, though, rideshares have just as much chance of getting into a collision. In fact, due to the nature of their job, which involves using an app and GPS directions with each ride, rideshares may have a higher risk of an accident.
If you’ve been involved in an accident while you were a passenger in an Uber or Lyft vehicle, you may be able to file a claim for compensation against the driver and the rideshare company.
However, federal and Ohio laws about these kinds of claims can be tricky. A Canton Uber & Lyft accident attorney can help.
You should still call 911 for emergency medical response and the police, even if you’re not the driver. In Ohio, you’re required by law to report an accident that involves more than $1,000 of property damage or one in which someone was injured, no matter how minor.
The responding officer will create a police report of the accident, detailing the circumstances, who was involved, the road and weather conditions, and determining who was at fault.
Even if you don’t think you’re hurt, it’s also important to get checked out by the EMS responders. Sometimes, car accident injuries don’t present symptoms right away, like a torn ligament, neck or back injury, or a head injury like a mild concussion.
EMS workers are trained to spot these kinds of injuries and know what to look for after an accident, which can help you start treatment immediately and stand a better chance of a full recovery.
Following these steps after a rideshare accident protects you:
- Call 911 — or you can also text 911 in Canton, and Stark County
- Exchange information with both drivers,
- Take pictures of the accident and your injuries if you can
- Jot down both license plates and a brief description of each vehicle
- Ask for copies of the EMS assessment or hospital exam records
- Obtain a copy of the police report, or submit an online request for one
- Get any reports of follow-up medical care and treatment recommendations
- Hire a Canton Uber & Lyft accident lawyer
The driver’s insurance company and the insurance company for the rideshare company may approach you for a statement after the accident or may offer you a small settlement. However, leaving these conversations to your Uber & Lyft accident lawyer is important, as they will fight to protect your interests.
Because ridesharing is such a new form of transit, the laws in Ohio may be changing rapidly to keep up. This means that you need a lawyer in Canton who focuses on rideshare accidents and is familiar with changes or revisions to Ohio statutes that can affect your case.
A rideshare driver may have different coverage depending on whether they’re logged onto the app, actively transporting a fare, or driving to pick one up.
If the driver isn’t logged into the rideshare app, they’re considered off-duty. This means that they aren’t covered by their Uber or Lyft insurance and that these companies cannot be named as part of the claim filed by your lawyer for Uber & Lyft accidents.
Liability in an Ohio rideshare accident is based on negligence. If the rideshare driver was found to have caused the accident, they are the at-fault driver and will be responsible for compensating you.
This includes medical treatment for your injuries, property damage (if your vehicle was wrecked, for example), and emotional trauma — also known as pain and suffering.
However, it’s important to note that Ohio is a comparative negligence state. This means that if the court determines that you were more than 50% responsible for the accident, you cannot recover damages from the other party.
How you recover damages from a rideshare driver largely relies on their status. As stated above, an off-duty driver is a private citizen, and a collision with them would be handled like any other private vehicle collision.
However, if the driver is logged into their app, then you may be able to collect damages from both the driver and the rideshare company they’re contracted with.
In order to sue Lyft, Uber, or another Canton rideshare company, your attorney for Uber & Lyft accidents must be able to prove that the company was negligent in some way.
Oftentimes, negligence on the part of Uber or Lyft comes down to how they hire, screen, and train their drivers and how much supervision and oversight the company provides.
For example, suppose the rideshare driver in your accident had a DUI or a record of traffic accidents or moving violations, but the ride-sharing company was approved anyway. In that case, your Canton Uber & Lyft accident lawyer may make a case for negligence in hiring.
It’s important to note that rideshare drivers aren’t actually employees. Instead, they are independent contractors partnering with Uber or Lyft. As such, they may not be covered by company insurance like a traditionally employed driver.
A lawyer for Uber & Lyft accidents builds your case for damages with several layers. This includes:
- The police report from the crash scene
- Your EMS evaluation right after the accident
- Any other medical records of your crash injuries
- Evidence you collected, like photos or videos
- Witness statements
- The rideshare company’s contractor records of the driver
There may be other documents your lawyer in Canton requires, and you may have to write a statement of the accident.
- $1 million bodily injury liability and property damage coverage when providing a ride for a passenger
- $50,000 in bodily injury per individual/$100,000 per accident/$25,000 property damage when logged into the app but not actively giving a ride
- $25,000 for injury or death of one person/$50,000 for injury or death of two or more people/$25,000 property damage as a private driver when not logged in or carrying passengers
When you file a lawsuit after a rideshare accident, it’s often the driver’s insurance company (and sometimes the rideshare company’s insurance carrier) that typically pays the settlement.
Therefore, the amount you receive may be limited by their insurance coverage. Your Slater & Zurz personal injury attorney in Canton can tell you for sure when they file your claim.
Yes! Whether you were a passenger in a rideshare vehicle or were struck by a rideshare driver, you may file a claim for damages, including your medical bills, the cost of fixing or replacing your vehicle, time missed from work, and the emotional trauma or pain and suffering you experienced as a result of the crash and your injuries.
However, Ohio rideshare lawsuits are complex and not something you want to approach without the assistance of an attorney for Uber & Lyft accidents.
This is a tricky question, and there is no 100% correct answer. The party liable for your injuries will be the one that a judge determines was negligent and whose negligent actions directly led to the accident that caused your injuries.
Each case is different, so the answer to this question is, “it depends.” This is why it’s so important to retain legal representation, find the responsible party, and prove their negligence.
Filing a lawsuit for damages after a car wreck involving a Lyft or Uber driver can be complicated, whether you were the passenger in a rideshare vehicle or struck by one.
Their insurance companies may try to deny your claim or offer you a low-ball settlement that may not even cover your medical bills. You need an advocate — an attorney who focuses on rideshare accidents and is on your side.
The legal team at Slater & Zurz includes professional personal injury lawyers who concentrate on helping victims of Uber and Lyft accidents. We can help you. Contact us today at (330) 968-2547 or visit us online to schedule a free consultation about your case.