Costa Mesa Rideshare Accident Attorney
Rideshare services like Uber and Lyft have become incredibly popular throughout Orange County, CA, over the last several years. These services provide app users with an accessible alternative to taxis and public transportation and offer valuable work opportunities for people to make extra cash as drivers. However, despite the convenience that rideshare services offer to Costa Mesa residents, these services have generated a great deal of legal discussion regarding liability for accidents and the responsibilities that rideshare companies have to their drivers and their passengers affected by accidents.
Legal Representation for Victims of Costa Mesa, CA, Rideshare Accidents
Legislators throughout the US have enacted laws regarding rideshare accidents to encourage rideshare companies to take their responsibilities to their customers and drivers more seriously, requiring companies like Uber and Lyft to carry auto insurance that comes into play when a driver is picking up a passenger or delivering them to their destination.
If you or a loved one recently suffered injuries in a car accident involving a rideshare driver in Costa Mesa, you could face a very difficult series of legal proceedings until you secure appropriate compensation for your losses. An experienced Costa Mesa rideshare accident lawyer is an invaluable asset in this situation. Your legal team can help you navigate the complex insurance claim process you face and help you maximize your recovery.
Why Do I Need a Costa Mesa Rideshare Accident Lawyer?
You might think that liability for your recent rideshare accident is obvious and that you should not have much trouble obtaining a fair settlement for your damages. However, rideshare companies must offer insurance coverage for accidents their drivers cause. However, dealing with any insurance company is likely to be far more stressful and tedious than many claimants initially expect. Additionally, you will need to establish liability for the accident before pursuing compensation, and more than one party can be responsible for your recent rideshare accident.
Instead of attempting to manage a problematic insurance claim process or build a personal injury claim on your own while recovering from your injuries, you can have an experienced legal team manage your case proceedings on your behalf while you focus on recovery. Ultimately, you are more likely to win your case when you have legal representation you can trust, and you are more likely to maximize your total recovery with the help of an attorney.
Easton & Easton has a team of highly experienced Costa Mesa personal injury attorneys who have years of experience representing clients in various cases, including those pertaining to rideshare accidents. We know the legal challenges facing victims of rideshare crashes and the problems they often encounter when filing their insurance claims after these incidents. Therefore, we will take time to get to know our clients, thoroughly investigate all options for their recovery, and guide them through their case proceedings as efficiently as possible.
Insurance Claims for Rideshare Accidents
The two biggest rideshare companies operating in Costa Mesa and throughout California are Uber and Lyft. These companies are legally required to carry insurance coverage that functions in three distinct tiers. Coverage can come into play in different ways depending on how an accident occurs. However, Uber and Lyft have practically identical insurance coverage, and it’s vital to know what to expect if you need to file a claim against either rideshare company’s insurance policy.
When a driver gets into an accident while their Driver app is turned off and they are not carrying any passengers, their own auto insurance policy would apply. However, if they are logged into their rideshare Driver app and waiting for a passenger’s ride request, the first tier of insurance coverage applies. This coverage includes up to $50,000 in bodily injury liability coverage for a single person, up to $100,000 in bodily injury liability coverage for two or more people, and up to $25,000 in property damage liability coverage. In California, this tier of coverage comes into play when the rideshare driver is responsible for causing the accident, as California upholds a fault rule for resolving auto accidents.
Once a rideshare driver has accepted a ride request and is on the way to pick up a passenger or while taking the passenger to their destination, the rideshare company’s larger tier of auto insurance applies if the driver causes an accident. This level of coverage offers up to $1 million as third-party liability coverage and additional coverage options that can fluctuate based on the driver’s personal auto insurance policy and the circumstances of the accident.
If you are riding in a rideshare driver’s vehicle and experience an accident, you will need the help of an experienced Costa Mesa rideshare accident attorney to both determine liability for the incident and to determine the full scope of the damages you could potentially recover. While the $1 million coverage limit may seem generous, it is important to remember that insurance companies typically do everything possible to limit their liability for claim payouts.
Having an experienced attorney help you draft your demand letter to the insurance company will significantly reduce the chance of the insurer unfairly pushing back on your claim. When you choose Easton & Easton as your Costa Mesa rideshare accident attorneys, you will have a responsive and experienced legal team ready to provide the ongoing support and guidance you need to approach your case with peace of mind and confidence.
Recovery From a Rideshare Accident
California enforces the fault rule when it comes to vehicle accidents. This means the driver responsible for causing an accident absorbs liability for the resulting damages. However, for rideshare accidents, liability could fall to the rideshare driver, another driver, or multiple parties. Your Costa Mesa rideshare accident lawyer will assist you in gathering whatever evidence you may need to clearly establish fault for your accident. They will also help you calculate the full scope of the damages you can seek if you must file a civil claim in response to the accident.
The first step toward your recovery from a rideshare accident will be filing an auto insurance claim against the driver who caused the accident. If this involves the rideshare company’s insurance policy, your Costa Mesa rideshare accident lawyer will likely strive to secure maximum compensation from the company’s insurance policy. However, available insurance may not fully cover your losses, in which case you would need to file a personal injury claim against the party responsible for your damages.
If you must file a personal injury claim, you have the right to seek full compensation for all economic losses you sustained from the incident. These can include your medical expenses, lost income, and property damage caused by the defendant. In addition, you have the right to seek recovery not only for immediate losses like hospital bills and lost wages from your time spent in the hospital but also for the cost of long-term medical care and lost future earning capacity when you cannot return to work due to your injury.
Q: Can You Sue an Uber Driver for Crashing?
A: If you are riding in an Uber and the driver causes an accident, you can file a claim against Uber’s insurance policy to secure compensation for your damages. Similarly, if you are driving your own vehicle and an Uber driver hits you, their auto insurance would apply if they were not logged into the app. Otherwise, one of the two tiers of Uber insurance would apply depending on whether they were waiting for a ride request or had already accepted one.
Q: Does Uber Compensate Their Drivers for Accidents?
A: Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare companies offer various forms of protection to their drivers, but they expect their drivers to maintain their own insurance policies. If you are unclear about the level of legal protection you would have as a rideshare driver, it’s a good idea to have an experienced lawyer review the fine print of your contract.
Q: Can I Sue the Rideshare Company?
A: If you are hurt because of the negligence of an Uber or Lyft driver, the company has a legal duty to fix the problem to the best of its ability. Unfortunately, not every claimant receives cooperation from these rideshare companies. Therefore, if you believe that Uber or Lyft was negligent in any way that resulted in your damages, or if you believe they acted in bad faith in handling your claim for damages, it’s essential to speak with an experienced Costa Mesa rideshare accident attorney to determine your best options for legal recourse.
Q: How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Costa Mesa Rideshare Accident Lawyer?
A: Easton & Easton makes it easy to secure the legal representation you need after a personal injury. We offer clients contingency fee billing, meaning there are no upfront costs for our legal representation. We will take a percentage of your case award as our fee, but only if we win your case. If we cannot secure a recovery on your behalf, you will owe us nothing.
Resolving a rideshare accident claim can be incredibly difficult without an experienced Costa Mesa rideshare accident lawyer on your side. If you are ready to discuss your case with a reliable attorney, contact Easton & Easton today to schedule your free consultation with our firm.