How Liability Works in Accidents Involving Uber Drivers
Liability for an accident works differently when you're a passenger in a car driven by an Uber driver. Uber has its liability insurance, but coverage depends on a lot of factors. Know your right to coverage when you ride Uber.
Does Uber provide insurance coverage in Pennsylvania?In Pennsylvania, Uber has first-party liability benefits that compensate the driver for his or her injuries regardless of fault. The policy also provides primary liability coverage that pays for injuries and other expenses or losses that passengers or other drivers suffer in the event the Uber driver caused the accident.
If the driver is actively looking for fares but has not accepted a rider at the time of the wreck, the driver has $50,000 coverage for bodily injury per person and $100,000 per accident with $25,000 for property damage per accident.
If the driver has accepted a fare and is driving to pick up the rider or has a rider in the vehicle, the coverage increases to $1 million bodily injury and property damage coverage. Drivers not logged into the Uber app will only have their personal liability coverage to cover damages.
If I have no-fault coverage can I still collect damages from Uber?If you are in a wreck with an Uber driver, you can rely on your first-party coverage to pay for covered expenses, like medical treatment, up to your policy limits. And like any other accident, if the Uber driver caused the accident, then you can file a claim against the Uber driver's liability insurance, discussed above.
But just like any other accident, whether you have limited or full tort coverage can affect whether you can file a liability claim for your pain and suffering. If you have full tort, there are no restrictions to sue for pain and suffering. But if you have limited tort, you may only be able to sue for pain and suffering if you suffered serious injuries.
How can a lawyer help me after an accident involving Uber?Despite the clearly-defined liability coverage depending on the driver's status at the time of the accident (on the app and looking for a passenger; on the way to pick up a passenger; or with passenger in vehicle), claims against Uber and other rideshare companies can be difficult.
For example, Uber may argue that the driver was not on the app or working at the time of the wreck. And as always, insurance companies may argue that you are at fault for the accident in an attempt to reduce or deny liability.
You will need a strong case and legal team to identify liability and argue your case. Your lawyer may need to gather evidence like employment information for the driver, driving records, or contracts between Uber and its drivers. These items are in addition to the normal evidence needed to prove liability, like police reports, witness testimony, and photographs of the scene.