In July 2019, a Denver woman hired Uber, a ride-share service to take her home after a Garth Brooks concert. What should have been a simple ride home turned into a tragic event. A driver in another car ran through a red light and crashed into the woman’s uber vehicle. Both the driver of the Uber car and her passenger died from their injuries. Severe car accidents are not limited to vehicles driven by their owners as more people hire ride-sharing services in Atlanta like Lyft and Uber. As a result, the possibility of being involved in a car accident involving a ride-sharing service increases. Here are a few tips for what to do after an Atlanta Lyft or Uber car accident.
First, Stop Your Car, Call 911, And Stay at the Atlanta Car Accident Scene
The first and most crucial step is to call 911 when it becomes safe to do so. Many car accident victims may think they did not suffer an injury due to the adrenaline and shock after the accident. Often, car accident victims don’t discover the extent of their injuries until the paramedics arrive and examine them.
Keep in mind that under Georgia law, you must stop your vehicle and remain at the crash scene until the police arrive. There are a few exceptions to this rule. If the Lyft or Uber car accident does not result in an injury or at least $500 of property damage, you do not have to stop and wait for authorities to arrive. In those cases, you are only required to report the accident to the appropriate local or state highway authorities. If you are in doubt as to whether the crash caused at least $500 of property damage, the safest option is to wait for authorities.
Do Not Admit Fault to the Other Driver
Whether you are the Uber or Lyft driver, or a passenger, do not admit fault to any other person at the scene of the accident. Being part of a car accident can be shocking and traumatizing, and you may not be thinking clearly when you admit fault for the accident. If you do end up involved in a personal injury lawsuit, you do not want your admission of guilt to come back to haunt you.
If Possible, Take Pictures of Your Car Ride-Sharing Accident
If you are well enough to do so, take pictures after you stop your vehicle. If you are in a life-threatening situation, unable to move, or it is ill-advised, do not worry about taking photos of the Lyft or Uber accident. Before moving your car, try to take pictures of where your car originally came to rest after the crash. A vehicle’s position is crucial in processing insurance claims and Atlanta car accident personal injury lawsuits.
Contact Your Own Car Insurance Company
As soon as you are able, it is wise to contact your own car insurance company. Most insurance companies require that their customers inform them of any car accidents within 30 days of the accident. If you do not comply, many companies will later deny claims. Even if you are worried about your car insurance rates increasing, you still need to report the accident to your car insurance company.
Car insurance companies usually investigate their customers driving records on an annual basis. When doing so, car insurance companies will see the police report from the accident on your file. All Georgia drivers must pay for an underinsured motorist provision in their car insurance policy. This provision covers any medical expenses that cost more than the coverage offered by the at-fault driver. You do not want to lose your ability to receive additional coverage from your own insurance company, especially if the at-fault driver’s insurance company does not adequately compensate you.
Look into the Insurance Coverage of the Uber or Lyft Driver
Was the ride-sharing application driver transporting a customer when the accident occurred? If so, then the Lyft or Uber driver must carry at least $1,000,000 in insurance liability that covers death, injury, or property damage as required by Georgia law. The Uber or Lyft driver must carry at least $1,000,000 for uninsurance or underinsured drivers. The $1,000,000 minimum is per car accident.
If you were a ride-sharing passenger when the accident occurred, you would receive coverage under the driver’s insurance policy. It does not matter whether the Uber or Lyft driver you hired was at fault or whether another driver negligently caused the accident. Regardless of who caused the crash, the ride-share driver’s insurance policy should cover your injuries.
What happens if an Uber or Lyft driver negligently crashes into another innocent driver’s car? You will probably be able to claim the Uber Driver’s car insurance. It is challenging to use Uber or Lyft for an accident caused by one of their drivers. Ridesharing companies hire drivers as independent contractors and in doing so, avoid liability. If ride-share companies considered their drivers to be employees, then injured parties could sue the companies as well under the doctrine of respondeat superior.
Contact Experienced Atlanta Uber or Lyft Accident Attorneys
We understand that going through a motor vehicle accident can be traumatic and stressful. If you have suffered an injury in an Atlanta Uber or Lyft car accident, you should seek legal help as soon as possible. You may not know the extent of your injuries right away, and taking the right steps can help preserve a viable personal injury claim.
Our experienced Atlanta car accident attorneys can help investigate your car accident and reconstruct what happened at the scene. Are insurance companies denying your claim or not adequately compensating you? If so, we can discuss the possibility of a personal injury lawsuit to secure the compensation you deserve. There is no time to waste. Please contact us or call us at (770) 769-5964 to set up a consultation today.