Rideshare programs and apps are gaining popularity in cities around the country. While most people choose between Lyft and Uber, there are several other rideshare apps in Chicago. Our Chicago rideshare accident lawyers handle crashes involving these drivers regularly.
A rideshare is an arrangement in which a passenger travels in a private vehicle driven by the owner/operator of that vehicle. The driver is typically a stranger and the passenger agrees to pay a fee in exchange for transit.
Ridesharing is a convenient and inexpensive option for commuters. It allows the passenger to hail a driver at almost any location to reach their destination.
Ridesharing apps are more flexible than public transportation as the passenger can control the route and pickup time. Further, most ridesharing programs allow carpool options, keeping costs lower.
Ridesharing apps are seen as convenient, accessible, and a great resource for those looking to travel around the Chicago area. Further, some limited data suggests that ridesharing apps are helping to reduce the number of drunk and impaired drivers on public roadways. This can improve safety and reduce the frequency of drunk driving accidents.
What are the Problems with Ridesharing?
There are some serious flaws with ridesharing systems. For example, not all ridesharing programs are as careful as they should be with their driver approvals and hiring practices.
While some companies conduct background checks and ensure drivers have safe driving records, others are not as vigilant. Unfortunately, drivers who lack experience or have a bad driving record can cause accidents, injuring passengers and those in other vehicles.
Taxi drivers and those operating public transportation vehicles are subject to very strict safety and experience regulations. Unfortunately, these do not exist for most rideshare drivers.
As rideshare app drivers use their own personal vehicles, levels of safety features can vary a lot from vehicle to vehicle. Further, passengers typically will not know what safety features are present before taking a ride.
In addition, ridesharing apps allow passengers to rate their drivers. Drivers can feel pressure to get riders to their destination faster in order to boost ratings or receive a larger tip. This can lead to aggressive driving and speeding.
Finally, the more trips a driver completes, the more money they can make. Thus, the incentive to speed is very real.
Who is Held Liabal in a Ridesharing Accident?
When a rideshare collision occurs and a passenger or a driver of another vehicle has injuries, many questions arise as to who should be held liable. Further, this type of accident is very common in the Chicago area given the city’s fast pace and growing demand for ridesharing.
The facts of any specific collision will determine where fault lies for a crash. An at-fault driver can be held liable for injuries that occur during a collision. However, there may be questions as to whether others, including a ridesharing company, may bear blame as well.
What is Rideshare Auto Insurance Coverage?
Some ridesharing programs provide insurance for drivers and passengers involved in collisions. However, coverage may vary among companies and may not be enough to compensate for all injuries that happen in a crash.
The good news is that the major players, Uber and Lyft, provide $1 Million in liability insurance for its drivers. This, while on a ride or on the way to pick up a fare. This is not the biggest of insurance policies, but it’s much bigger than the average driver on the road.
Further, there is lesser coverage if an accident occurs while the app is active, but not on a ride. And if the Uber or Lyft driver is not using the app at the time of an accident, his or her personal auto insurance would apply.
Do Rideshare Accident Victims Have Rights?
It is important for victims who are in a ridesharing car accident to know that they have rights under local and state laws. This will often entitle them to a financial recovery.
Often, those injured in rideshare accidents can make a claim for damages. Further, they can work with a rideshare accident attorney who will assist them with every step of the claim.
The legal team at Abels & Annes is available 24/7 for free consultations. Our Chicago rideshare accident lawyers will speak with you and answer questions about your options.
If you were injured in a rideshare accident with Uber or Lyft, contact Abels & Annes, P.C. at (312) 924-7575 for a free case consultation.