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Uber Passengers: What to Do If Your Rideshare driver Causes an Accident

Rideshare car accidents involving an Uber driver or Lyft driver, are common in Boston, Massachusetts.  Residents and visitors of Boston use ridesharing services to get around the city for work, get to and from the airport, or travel safely on a night out on the town.  As independent contractors, these drivers are often multitasking, using their phones for tasks like a GPS and setting up their next ride, as well as interacting with new passengers.  Often, Uber and Lyft drivers are picking up rides in Boston, MA, but reside outside the city, and may not be familiar with the roadways, or are operating on minimal rest after working long hours.  This can lead to distractions and consequently, car accidents and serious injuries.  

Rideshare vehicle insurance

When you’re involved in a car accident in a rideshare vehicle it’s essential to understand the insurance landscape.  In Massachusetts, the state mandates that vehicles have minimum bodily injury and property damage insurance coverage.  However, these limits differ for rideshare vehicles like Uber and Lyft.  

When it comes to Rideshare vehicles, M.G.L. c. 175, Section 228 requires all rideshare drivers carry a minimum level of liability coverage, which is a type of insurance that covers damages and injuries that the driver may cause to others while driving.  The coverage differs based on the driver’s status at the time of the accident.  Below is a summary.    

  • Offline Driver (rideshare app off)
    • The Uber driver’s personal motor vehicle insurance coverage is in effect.  
  • Driver is Logged In to rideshare app, waiting for a Ride Request
    • In this scenario, the State requires that drivers must carry a minimum of $50,000 per person/$100,000 per accident in bodily injury liability coverage, and $30,000 for property damage.
  • Driver En Route to Pick Up a passenger or Transporting Passengers
    • Here, the Rideshare policy applies and the state requires that drivers carry $1 million per occurrence, per vehicle coverage for death, bodily injury and property damage, uninsured motorist coverage, and personal injury protection.  

How do I get compensated for my injuries after I’ve been in a Rideshare Accident?  

Massachusetts operates under a no-fault system, and as a rideshare passenger, you’re covered by that vehicle’s Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Insurance, which provides initial financial support for your medical treatment, and lost wages after a car accident, irrespective of who’s at fault.   

If you suffer injuries, you should speak with personal injury attorney who would then purse a personal injury claim on your behalf against the at fault driver’s insurance company.  This could be your Rideshare driver, or a third party vehicle.  Because Rideshare drivers have different levels of coverage based on their status at the time of an accident, these types of cases can be complex.  

Steps After a Rideshare Accident in Boston

Taking the right steps immediately after a Lyft accident can significantly impact the outcome of any personal injury claims or insurance settlements

  1. Contact Emergency Services: Use Uber’s in-app Emergency Button if necessary.
  2. Document the Accident: Take photos of the scene, your injuries, and use the Uber app to confirm your status as an Uber passenger.
  3. Seek Medical Attention: Immediate medical care is key for both your health and supporting any future injury claims.
  4. Gather Information: Obtain contact information from the Uber driver, other drivers involved, and any witnesses.
  5. Report the Accident: Through the Uber app or website.
  6. Consult a Specialized Accident Attorney: A personal injury attorney with experience in rideshare services can help navigate the complexities of insurance claims and getting you financial compensation for your injuries and damages.  

Boston Uber accidents can result in serious injuries, require medical treatment, and medical bills.  If you’re a passenger in a Uber car or Lyft vehicle that’s been in an accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney who specializes in these types of personal injury cases. Call or reach out to Gavagan Law, LLC and we’ll guide you through this process and pursue the compensation you rightfully deserve.  Call or reach out using our contact form and speak with us for a free consultation.

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