3 Important Things to Do If You Get Into a Ridesharing Accident
The inclusion of a third party - the ridesharing company - makes the necessary steps to take slightly different from an ordinary car accident.
In recent years, ridesharing services such as Uber and Lyft are becoming the preferred mode of transportation for commuters, as it is a cost-effective and convenient way of reaching your destination. Many users believe that these rideshare services are relatively safe compared to using their vehicle or hailing a taxi. However, the reality is that you can still get into a car accident with these car services. Here are some steps you need to take if you get involved in a ridesharing accident.
Call the authorities, including the ridesharing company
Whether or not the accident was caused by your driver or due to the other party’s negligence, you need to call law enforcement immediately. After calling the police, make sure to contact the ridesharing company to report the incident. Never consent to any agreement with the company representative and discuss any details as objectively as you can. Also, remember not to sign any documents without your legal counsel present.
Assess your physical condition and check the severity of your injuries. Even if it was only a minor fender bender, make sure that you seek medical assistance since you need the medical report later on when filing a case. You also need to be aware of the different post-traumatic reactions, as you may exhibit some of these symptoms in the following days.
Collect evidence and document everything
Gather any evidence that you can get and, if possible, write down notes of the accident details. Get your Uber or Lyft driver’s contact information, including their license plate number, insurance company details, vehicle description, and take note of their behaviour and attitude. Obtain the other driver’s details as well and make sure that they do not leave the scene.
Take as many pictures or videos as you can, as your memory might be distorted in the days to come. It is better that you have visual evidence instead of relying solely on your memory. Look for nearby establishments such as gas stations and convenience stores as some of them may have surveillance cameras. Talk to potential witnesses and make sure to get their contact details. If they willingly consent, consider recording a video of them discussing the accident to make sure that you can use it as evidence if they claim that they have no recollection of the incident.
The difference between ridesharing accidents from other car accidents
Ridesharing services operate differently from other car services such as car rentals or taxicabs. Private individuals use their vehicles to offer transportation to riders utilising these ride-hailing services. Most of the time, they do not possess the commercial driver licenses required for professional drivers. Additionally, these companies do not often categorise their drivers as employees, as they only become Uber or Lyft drivers once they turn on their applications.
Most of these services provide commercial insurance coverage, which is significantly higher than regular car insurance. The amount of coverage may vary depending on the details of the accident, so it is vital that you get the professional guidance of a car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Do not attempt to settle these disputes on your own, as most of the accidents are complicated cases that can drain you physically, emotionally, and financially.
Even if you are taking every safety measure while driving, car accidents are inevitable events that can happen to anyone. It is crucial that you know the appropriate steps following a car accident to make you legally protected.