Los Angeles Uber Accidents Lawyer
Uber revolutionized the ride sharing world since it was launched in San Francisco in 2009. Uber operates in 600 cities, 65 countries, and has approximately 3.9 million drivers worldwide. There are an astounding 14 million Uber trips completed each day, with 46% of these trips taking place in large urban areas such as West Hollywood and the greater Los Angeles area. Uber estimates it has completed a total of 10 billion rides as of 2019 and the company’s profits are extraordinary at $11.3 billion in yearly revenue. Uber is valued at approximately $72 billion as of late 2018 and accounts for approximately 69% of all rideshares in the U.S. with Lyft as its biggest competitor. Los Angeles drivers spend an average of $60 a month on Uber trips.
Of course, with more people riding in Uber vehicles comes an increase in Uber related accidents. A 2018 study reported by MIT states that traffic deaths have risen 2-2% since Uber launched and traffic congestion has also increased due to the fact so many Uber vehicles are on the road.
The good news for Uber customers in California is that Uber now has significant insurance coverage in the event you are involved in an accident while either driving for Uber, riding in an Uber, or are hit by an Uber vehicle.
The “Period” System and Uber Insurance Coverage:
It is important to understand the “period” system employed by Uber to determine the amount of coverage available. Uber divides its driver’s usage into the 3 periods, which are as follows:
- Period 1: If you are involved in an Uber accident while the Uber driver’s app is on and looking for a fare, Uber provides insurance coverage of $50,000 per person.
- Period 2: If the Uber driver has accepted a fare and is on the way to pick up the passenger, Uber provides $1 million in coverage for any bodily injury damages.
- Period 3: If the Uber driver has picked up a fare and is driving a passenger, there is also $1 million in liability coverage for any bodily injuries.
It is important to note that getting Uber to fairly compensate you for your injuries is a complex and arduous process. Just because their insurance policy provides for this coverage doesn’t mean they will pay it without a fight. It is essential to speak with an experienced Uber attorney who understands the value of your case and who will fight to obtain a fair settlement on your behalf.
Who Is Covered by Uber’s Insurance:
- Passengers in an Uber: Uber provides up to $1 million in coverage if you are injured as a passenger, even if the accident is the fault of someone other than the Uber driver. For example, if another driver hits the Uber, and that driver has only the California minimum of $15,000 in personal injury liability insurance, Uber will cover up to the remaining $985,000. Of course, these amounts will be paid by Uber only if your damages can be proven at this amount.
- Uber Drivers: If you are injured while driving for Uber, the same scenario as above applies. Uber will cover up to $1 million in bodily injury coverage. However, Assembly Bill AB5 was signed into law in September 2019 reclassifying Uber drivers as employees rather than independent contractors. This new law will impact insurance coverages. For this reason, it is important to speak with an experienced Uber attorney who is knowledgeable of changes in the law.
- Drivers hit by an Uber: If you are driving your vehicle and you are hit by an Uber driver, Uber’s insurance company becomes the primary source of insurance recovery and their $1 million bodily injury liability applies.
- Pedestrians hit by an Uber: Likewise, if you are a pedestrian hit by an Uber, their insurance policy covers your bodily injury damages for up to $1 million dollars.
- Other areas: If you are assaulted, stalked, sexually harassed or in any other manner damaged by an Uber driver, their insurance policy may apply. However, this is a complicated process that requires consultation with an experienced attorney. To date, Uber still views their drivers as independent contractors. For this reason, they will assert they are not responsible because their drivers are not employees. This is, of course, nonsense. But it is important you obtain immediate legal representation to protect your interests.
What to Do If You’ve Been Injured:
Although it may seem that Uber has plenty of money available to cover your damages, their insurance company and their lawyers often low-ball claims or deny claims outright for a number of reasons. This is why it is imperative to speak to an experienced Uber attorney.
Additionally, the following tips will help you in the immediate aftermath of an Uber accident:
- Seek immediate medical attention. If you’ve been injured at the scene, call 911 and insist that police and emergency services come to the scene. Also insist that police officers write an actual report and have the police give you the report incident number so your attorney can follow up to obtain a copy when it’s complete;
- Ensure that either you or someone else obtains the names and insurance information of everyone involved in the accident;
- If you are well enough, obtain photos at the scene of all property damage;
- If you are injured as a passenger in an Uber, save your trip route on your Uber app, showing the time the trip occurred and the route of travel;
- Do not call and open a claim with Uber until you have spoken with an experienced Uber attorney. Often, in the immediate moments after an accident, injured victims are confused and in shock. Uber may take advantage of the confusion and use your words as evidence against you. An experienced attorney will open a claim on your behalf and ensure that the correct details of the accident are properly relayed to the claims adjuster at Uber.
If you’ve been injured in an Uber accident it is crucial to hire an experienced attorney with the knowledge and skill to obtain maximum compensation. Craig Charles Law has a long track record of fighting on behalf of clients injured in an Uber accidents, thus ensuring the best possible outcome for you.
Craig Charles Law has offices located in West Hollywood, El Segundo and San Diego to serve the needs of clients throughout Southern California. We are a gay friendly, LGBTQIA affirming law practice. Call Craig Charles Law today for a free, no obligation consult at 424-343-0660