When you book a ride on Uber, Lyft or another ridesharing app, you’re not typically thinking about what happens if you’re involved in an accident. But just like all drivers, Uber drivers can get into accidents that can injure themselves, their passengers, and other drivers on the road. But because Uber drivers aren’t considered employees of Uber, what does that mean for liability in a car accident claim?
Uber, Lyft, most other ridesharing apps and even food delivery apps do not consider their drivers employees of the company. Rather, the drivers are brought on as independent contractors which means that drivers can set their own schedules and enjoy more independence and freedom. In return, Uber does not have to pay taxes, benefits and unemployment insurance. There are, however, insurance requirements for liability coverage in many states.
New Jersey Uber Accident Settlement Amounts
While laws related to rideshare accidents vary by state, New Jersey has enacted some legislation designed to protect passengers while riding in an Uber, Lyft or other ridesharing services. These insurance requirements that apply when the driver is carrying a passenger replace the typical no-fault insurance laws that otherwise apply in New Jersey. Under New Jersey law, Uber/Lyft drivers who are carrying a passenger in their vehicles are required to carry $1.5 million in liability coverage (to compensate for bodily injury, property damage, and wrongful death), and $1.5 million in underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage. This insurance coverage is available to victims even if the Uber driver did not cause the accident and if the other driver was uninsured.
Pursuing a legal claim for an Uber accident may seem like a daunting task and something you want to avoid. We encourage you, however, to consider these three reasons you may need an experienced Uber accident attorney to help you through the process.
Reason #1: You were injured in an Uber accident as a passenger, as a pedestrian or in another vehicle.
The laws related to Uber accidents vary depending on if you were a passenger or not. And, if the Uber driver was ‘deadheading’ or driving around waiting for a passenger, those laws vary as well. Likely, the insurance company will attempt to contact you and try to settle for very little as quickly as they can. It’s critical to give yourself time to fully consider the scope of your injuries and how those injuries not only affect your finances now but also how those injuries could affect your quality of life later and future wages. An experienced Uber accident attorney will be able to work on your behalf to ensure you’re compensated for the full extent of your injuries.
Reason #2: An Uber accident attorney can handle the insurance company on your behalf
Without a legal claim, the insurance company can offer you a lowball offer that barely covers any of your needs and may even refuse to cover some of the damages. Insurance companies are in business to collect money, not pay out claimants. As a result, they work vigorously to pay victims as little as possible. By having legal representation, your Uber accident lawyer will handle all communications with the insurance company on your behalf and work toward securing the compensation you rightfully deserve.
Reason #3: You need to focus on healing, not insurance headaches.
New Jersey has complex insurance laws around car accidents involving Uber or other ridesharing services. Our knowledgeable Uber accident lawyers can take over all negotiations with insurers so you get full and fair compensation for your losses. One of our trusted team members will listen to your story, learn about your case, and can advise you next steps. Many of our clients feel a sense of relief once they make that first phone call.
There is no law requiring you to have a lawyer after an Uber accident. However, working with an experienced car accident attorney can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. Why risk being unfairly compensated and not having recourse to fix it? When you hire a personal injury lawyer from our team, you pay nothing upfront. We work on contingent fees that are only collected if we win your case. If we don’t win, you don’t pay.
Contact Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney, at Law, for a free consultation. With our proven track record of success and our commitment to client care, we can turn your setback into a comeback.