Rideshare services such as Uber and Lyft are booming in the Chicago area, with many residents relying on these platforms to get home after a night out or incorporate into their daily commute. Unfortunately, Uber and Lyft drivers can easily get into collisions with other vehicles, causing harm to drivers and passengers alike.
Navigating the rideshare insurance process can be confusing and difficult, especially in the wake of serious injury. Trust the Chicago Uber and Lyft accident attorneys at Duncan Law Group to handle your claim so you can focus on recovery, not paperwork.
Why Choose Us For Chicago Rideshare Accident Claims?
- Our firm operates on a contingency fee basis to help you limit your out-of-pocket costs. You do not have to pay upfront costs, and we will only charge you legal fees unless we secure a settlement on your behalf.
- Our attorneys have a track record of success, securing tens of millions of dollars in compensation over our 15 years of operation. We are committed to finding the optimal pathways toward your maximum settlement.
- Our firm believes in open communication and transparency throughout the personal injury claims process. Our Chicago personal injury lawyers will always answer your questions and help you prepare for each stage in your case.
Uber and Lyft’s Insurance Model & How it Affects Chicago Accident Lawsuits
Uber and Lyft famously provide high amounts of liability insurance for people who suffer injuries while using their services. However, the amount of insurance coverage that you receive will depend on the stage the driver was in at the time of the accident. Both companies share a very similar insurance model.
- If the driver did not have the Uber or Lyft app open at the time of the accident, you do not receive any coverage under the company policy.
- If the driver had the app open but did not accept a ride request yet, you can receive up to $50,000 in bodily injury liability and $100,000 in total injury liability coverage, as well as $25,000 for any property damage you sustained.
- If the driver had a passenger in the vehicle or was on the way to pick up a passenger when the accident occurred, you can receive up to $1 million in liability coverage from Uber or Lyft.
Your Legal Options After an Uber or Lyft Accident in Chicago
Ilinois follows a traditional fault-based system for car accidents, which states that the person responsible for the accident must pay for the damages of all the victims, including passengers, pedestrians, and other drivers. These rules extend to Uber and Lyft drivers as well, and you typically have three options for compensation after an accident.
- You can file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company.
- You can file a claim with your insurance, provided you have the appropriate coverage.
- You can file a lawsuit against the at-fault party in civil court.
In most car accident cases, you begin with an insurance claim and proceed to the courtroom if necessary. When an accident involves an Uber or Lyft driver, this process looks slightly different.
Uber and Lyft do provide insurance coverage if you suffer an injury in an accident that their driver causes, but you cannot claim this coverage right away. These companies require you to file a claim with the at-fault driver’s private insurance first, and if that process isn’t successful or you exhaust the driver’s policy limits, you can file a claim with Uber and Lyft’s insurance.
Most private insurance policies have exceptions for the commercial use of the covered vehicle, and it is likely the company will deny your claim since the driver was engaging in commercial activity at the time of the accident.
When it comes to lawsuits, you cannot hold Uber or Lyft directly liable for your injuries in most cases. This is because these companies treat their drivers as independent contractors, not employees. This designation releases the companies from liability if these drivers cause an accident. You could file a lawsuit against the driver directly if the insurance process does not result in an adequate settlement. Speak with an experienced Chicago car accident lawyer to explore your legal options.
What to Do After an Uber or Lyft Accident in Chicago, Illinois
While the moments immediately after a car crash can be terrifying and disorienting, this is the most crucial time for your accident claim. Evidence is freshest immediately after an accident, and taking steps to preserve this evidence can benefit your future claim significantly. If you can do so safely and without additional injury, take the following steps after the accident.
- Call 911. Illinois law requires you to report certain accidents to law enforcement, and calling the police will help you comply with this requirement. In addition, the responding officer will create an accident report after speaking to you and the other drivers involved in the accident, and this report will be a crucial piece of evidence. Provide your story to the officer and ask for his or her name and badge number to find the report later.
- Take screenshots of your Uber or Lyft app if you were a passenger in the vehicle. Taking this step will ensure you have evidence that you were in an active ride during the crash, allowing you to receive coverage under the companies’ $1 million liability policy.
- Seek medical treatment as soon as possible, even if you do not feel hurt. You may have internal injuries you are not aware of yet, or shock could be numbing the pain. Your medical records will be the most important piece of evidence in your claim, so it is important to seek help immediately. Do not admit anything about your injuries until you visit a doctor.
- Document the damage at the accident scene. Take pictures of your injuries, all of the vehicles involved in the crash, license plate numbers, and the area around the scene, including any traffic signs or signals.
- Collect the contact information of the other driver or drivers involved in the accident. Make sure to collect their names and phone numbers, their driver’s license numbers, and their insurance information.
- If there are any witnesses in the area, ask them for their contact information as well. These individuals can provide valuable testimony in your future claim.
- Contact an attorney as soon as possible. Insurance adjusters may reach out to you after the accident for a statement or with a settlement offer — but these tactics can reduce your potential award amount, causing you to lose the compensation you need to completely recover from your injuries. Do not speak with an insurance adjuster until you consult with your Chicago rideshare accident lawyer.
Contact Duncan Law Group Today for Chicago Rideshare Accident Claims
If you are suffering from injuries due to an Uber or Lyft accident, it is important to seek the help of a Chicago rideshare accident lawyer immediately. Filing your claim as soon as possible can help you recover the compensation you need sooner, and ensures you meet the statute of limitations.
Duncan Law Group is here to help. Our Uber and Lyft accident attorneys have significant experience handling rideshare claims, and have developed the strategies and compiled the resources necessary to build a compelling claim on your behalf. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation and strategize your next steps.