Miami Rideshare Accident Attorney
Rideshare services are popular in and around the Miami area at all times of the year. They provide valuable services for those who need transportation, particularly for anyone who has been drinking alcohol. However, there are times when rideshare drivers cause accidents. In those cases, anyone who is injured or sustains property damage needs to know how to secure the compensation they are entitled to. At the Flanagan Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Firm, P.A., our Miami rideshare accident attorneys are ready to get to work on your behalf. You deserve to be fairly compensated for what has happened.
Let the Flanagan Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Firm, P.A. get to work
When you have been injured in a rideshare accident, you need a skilled and experienced Miami rideshare accident attorney by your side. At the Flanagan Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Firm, P.A., we have years of experience helping injured clients secure the compensation they need.
- We limit the number of cases we take at a time so we can give each client and case the attention they deserve.
- Our clients always have access to their attorneys to ask any questions about their case.
- We firmly believe that every injured client should have the ability to take on rideshare companies and large insurance carriers who are not treating them fairly.
- Our attorneys have extensive experience handling car accidents, drunk driving accidents, and distracted driving accidents throughout Miami.
Why do you need an attorney for a rideshare accident?
With any car accident case, the process of obtaining compensation can be daunting. That is especially true for rideshare accident cases. An attorney will be an invaluable resource and will work to:
- Gather all evidence related to the crash, including the police report, any video or photo surveillance of the incident, eyewitness statements, and more.
- Work with medical professionals who can evaluate your medical records and assess your total medical costs.
- Handle all communication with the rideshare company, their insurer, and their legal team in an effort to obtain the compensation you need.
- Prepare your case for trial if the liable party does not offer a fair settlement.
How often do rideshare accidents occur?
While there are no official statistics regarding how often rideshare accidents occur, we know they do. During the latest reporting year in Florida, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles says that there were over 400,000 total vehicle crashes. Out of those, there were 3,116 fatalities and 254,310 injuries reported.
The MIT Technology Review says that rideshare services like Uber and Lyft have caused an increase in total car crash deaths in the US. They state that since 2011, when rideshare services began to gain popularity, traffic deaths have increased by 2% to 3%. This increase comes after years of decreasing traffic fatalities in the US in many major US metropolitan areas. For their study, researchers used data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and compared them with the dates Lyft and Uber launched in specific cities.
Rideshare drivers have little oversight
When you use a taxi or are a passenger on a commercial bus, you can be sure those drivers are regulated. Bus drivers have their commercial driver’s licenses, and taxi services have significant regulations in the state of Florida.
Rideshare drivers, on the other hand, have little oversight from companies like Uber and Lyft. These drivers usually have little to no added driver training. They are just regular drivers using their personal vehicles to take other people to their destinations. While rideshare companies do require drivers to periodically have their vehicles inspected, they perform very little oversight over the drivers. In fact, rideshare drivers are not employees at all – they are independent contractors.
What are some common rideshare accident injuries?
Every car accident is different, and the injuries victims in rideshare accidents vary in type and severity. Many car accidents result in only minor injuries. However, even minor injuries can result in major medical bills for victims. It is also not uncommon for rideshare accident victims to sustain the following:
- Broken and dislocated bones
- Severe lacerations
- Internal organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Spinal cord injuries
- Whiplash injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
Each of these injuries required significant medical attention and can lead to tremendous medical bills. In some cases, rideshare accident victims may not be able to work while they recover, which can affect the income they need to support themselves and their families.
Why are rideshare accidents so complicated?
Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft have worked to limit their liability in cases where their drivers are involved in car accidents, even when their drivers are at fault. Remember, drivers are not employees; they are independent contractors. This essentially absolves the rideshare company from vicarious liability in most cases.
Over the years, rideshare companies have incorporated insurance policies into their services, but this does not mean it is easy for victims to file claims and recover compensation. Victims will still need to prove liability in many rideshare accident cases, something that may require help from a skilled rideshare accident attorney.
How does Florida classify rideshare drivers?
In Florida, the law classifies drivers from rideshare companies as Transportation Network Companies, or TNCs. This means that they are treated differently than other transportation service types. This means that rideshare drivers are not considered “common carriers.” This means that they are not held to the same high standard of duty as bus, train, and cruise ship companies. This limits the ability of victims to recover compensation.
Who pays for rideshare accident injuries and damages?
The answer to this question can be complicated because it depends on whose insurance policy applies to the accident. Determining which insurance company is liable for these crashes depends on what the rideshare driver was doing at the time of the crash.
- If a rideshare driver is not signed into the rideshare service app to work, and they are conducting personal business in their vehicle, then their primary insurance carrier is responsible for any damages in an accident they cause.
- If a rideshare driver is signed into the app to work but does not have a passenger, then their personal insurance carrier is the primary coverage for injuries and damages they cause. The rideshare companies do have limited coverage in these cases if the driver’s personal carrier denies a claim or if the benefits are exhausted.
- If a rideshare driver is signed into the app to work, has a passenger, or is on the way to pick a passenger up, then the major rideshare companies have $1 million insurance policies to cover anyone involved in the crash.
Your own insurance provider may cover some of the costs of your injuries. All Florida drivers carry no-fault insurance that is designed to provide fairly quick coverage for crash injuries. This type of coverage is very limited, and may not be enough to cover anything more than a minor injury.
What kind of damages are covered by insurance?
In most car accident cases, including rideshare accidents, victims can suffer various injuries and sustain property damage. The total amount of compensation a victim will receive for a Miami rideshare accident case will vary depending on a number of factors. In general, the following types of damages may be available to rideshare accident victims:
- Coverage of all crash-related medical expenses
- Lost income if you cannot work while recovering
- The cost of any necessary medical equipment
- Pain and suffering damages
- Loss of enjoyment of life damages
- Coverage for any property damage
Will you need to file a personal injury lawsuit?
In a rideshare accident case, the various insurance policies involved are the first line of defense when it comes to compensation. However, there may be times when a personal injury lawsuit may be appropriate. This could include lawsuits filed against:
- Uber driver. This may be necessary if the rideshare driver’s insurance coverage denies a claim and the rideshare company’s insurance does not apply. If this is a traditional car accident (i.e. the driver was on personal business), then you will only be able to file a lawsuit in Florida under the following circumstances:
- a bone fracture occurred
- significant disfigurement for the victim
- permanent limitation of use of a body part or organ
- significant limitation of use of a body function or system
- you are fully disabled for 90 days or more
- Other drivers. If another driver’s negligence caused the accident, you may be able to file a claim against them given the conditions mentioned in the previous point are satisfied.
- Companies and manufacturers. If a defective vehicle or vehicle part caused the crash, you may be able to file a product liability lawsuit against the company or manufacturer.
How much does a rideshare accident attorney cost?
Victims of rideshare accidents have many complicated things to deal with, including recovering from their injuries and handling all of the expenses related to the crash. They should not also have to worry about how to afford a rideshare accident attorney. At the Flanagan Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Firm, P.A., we take cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that clients pay no upfront or out-of-pocket costs related to their case and they will only pay legal fees after we secure the compensation they deserve through a settlement or jury verdict.
Let us get to work on your behalf today
If you or someone you care about has been injured in a rideshare accident that was caused by the rideshare driver’s negligence or carelessness, you need to seek assistance from an attorney as soon as possible. At the Flanagan Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Firm, P.A., our Miami personal injury attorneys are dedicated to helping clients recover the compensation they deserve. We will thoroughly investigate your case and pursue the rideshare company, the driver’s insurer, and any other party involved for your coverage.
When you need a Miami rideshare accident attorney, you can click here to contact us or call us at (305) 638-4143 for a free consultation.