Rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft help people all across Tennessee get to work, meet with their doctors, arrange for social visits, and get across town. Some of the benefits of rideshare services are that you can reserve a ride when you need one, and the cost is often less than taking a taxicab. The apps are user friendly, and you can see your driver’s face (and his or her license plate) right on your phone, so you know that you have the right ride.
As with all commercial drivers, there are risks in being a passenger. The drivers may speed, run red lights, and get into motor vehicle accidents in the same ways that other drivers do. When rideshare drivers cause an accident, they can be held accountable. Depending on the terms of the ride, Uber and Lyft may also be responsible for deaths, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages such as scarring and disfigurement.
Insurance coverage for rideshare accidents
Since the drivers own their own cars, they are required to have the following minimum insurance coverages for their Tennessee vehicles:
- Bodily injury liability. $25,000 per person
- Bodily injury liability. $50,000 per accident.
- Property damage liability (usually the damage to another vehicle). $15,000 per accident
Passengers in a rideshare car have the right to demand the insurance company for the driver pay their damages if they are hurt due to driver negligence.
Uber and Lyft area also required to have insurance coverage in case one of their drivers gets into a car accident. The coverage applies under the following terms and conditions:
- Off-duty drivers. If the driver isn’t on duty, then Uber and Lyft aren’t responsible for any accidents that the driver causes.
- On-duty drivers who have not accepted a ride. If the driver has his/her app turned on (which means he or she is ready to take rides) when the accident happens, and passengers or drivers in other cars are hurt, Uber/Lyft’s policy should pay:
- Bodily injury for one person – $50,000
- Bodily injury for the accident- $100,000
- Property damage to another vehicle – $25,000
- On-duty drivers who have accepted a ride. Passengers who are hurt while riding in an Uber or Lyft can demand up to $1 million in damages if they are hurt during the ride. Families can demand up to $1 million in damages if a loved one is killed. The passenger or family must show that the driver was negligent.
The driver’s insurance is the primary coverage. The rideshare company insurance is the secondary coverage. It may be possible, if there isn’t enough insurance, to file a claim through your own uninsured/underinsured policy.
At Delius & McKenzie, PLLC, our Sevierville car accident lawyers file claims on your behalf against everyone responsible for the accident. We’ve been fighting for accident victims for more than 20 years. During that time, we’ve achieved a strong track record of success negotiating strong settlements and obtaining just jury verdicts. If you were injured in an Uber or Lyft vehicle, call us at (865) 428-8780 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment. We represent accident victims in Sevierville, Seymour, Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and the surrounding Tennessee locations.