OKC Rideshare Accident Lawyers
Helping Injured Uber & Lyft Riders Seek Justice & Compensation
Rideshare companies like Uber, Lyft, and others have revolutionized the way that people get around. These apps allow people to request a ride with the touch of a button, and they have become so popular that millions of people have these apps downloaded and use them regularly.
Unfortunately, rideshare drivers are not always as safe as they should be. They are not required to undergo the same background checks as taxi drivers, and they are not always subject to the same safety training and requirements. As a result, rideshare drivers have caused a number of accidents and even fatalities. In some cases, these rideshare drivers are at fault for the crashes that they cause.
At Fulmer Sill, we know how to investigate these accidents and how to hold rideshare drivers accountable for the harm that they cause. Our Oklahoma City rideshare accident attorneys are prepared to take on these companies and their insurance companies and make them pay for the damages that they have caused.
Rideshare Law in Oklahoma City
In Oklahoma City, ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft are regulated by both state and local authorities. The state of Oklahoma passed a law in 2017 that created a framework for regulating transportation network companies (TNCs) or ridesharing services. The law, known as House Bill 1614, established requirements for insurance, background checks, and licensing of drivers.
Rideshare drivers must meet certain criteria, including being at least 21 years old, possessing a valid driver's license, and passing a background check. The background check typically includes a review of driving records, criminal records, and sex offender registries.
Rideshare vehicles must meet specific standards set by the ridesharing companies and may be subject to periodic inspections. These requirements usually include factors such as vehicle age, condition, and insurance coverage.
How Injured Passengers are Compensated in an Uber or Lyft Accident
Rideshare drivers are required to maintain auto insurance that meets the minimum coverage limits set by the state. The insurance coverage must also include specific provisions for rideshare activities, including the period when the driver is available but hasn't accepted a ride request, the period when the driver is en route to pick up a passenger, and the period when the passenger is in the vehicle.
There are three distinct periods that determine insurance coverage while driving:
- When the app is off - The rideshare driver's personal auto insurance coverage is applicable.
When the app is on and drivers can receive ride requests - When the Lyft app is active and drivers are able to accept ride requests,
Lyft provides third-party liability insurance coverage for eligible accidents
if your personal insurance is not applicable. The coverage amounts are
- $50,000 per person for bodily injury
- $100,000 per accident for bodily injury
- $25,000 per accident for property damage
When the app is on and drivers are en route to pick up passengers or transport
them to their destination - When the Lyft app is active and drivers are en route to pick up passengers
or during rides, Lyft maintains the following insurance coverage for eligible
- At least $1,000,000 for third-party auto liability
- First-party coverages, such as uninsured motorist coverage, underinsured motorist coverage, PIP, MedPay, and/or Occupational Accident coverage
Rideshare Insurance Exclusions for Drivers
Rideshare insurance is a unique type of auto insurance that is designed to cover drivers who work for rideshare companies like Uber or Lyft. As a rideshare driver, you might assume that you are constantly covered by rideshare insurance, but that assumption would be wrong. There are a few key things you need to understand about this type of insurance and its exclusions, so you aren’t caught off-balance if an accident occurs while you are working as a rideshare driver.
What you should know about insurance as a rideshare driver:
- Exclusions: Your personal auto insurance policy may not cover you while you're driving for a rideshare company. Many personal auto policies exclude livery service,” which is essentially the use of your personal vehicle for commercial purposes, such as transporting paying passengers. However, you might also be excluded from coverage provided by the rideshare company depending on when the accident occurred and if you had any passengers. You could find yourself having difficulties getting any insurance company to cover you after a crash, so you should always talk to an attorney shortly after getting into a rideshare accident.
- High deductibles: If the rideshare company does provide some insurance coverage for a driver after an accident, it will likely have a high deductible and may only kick in after any privately purchased insurance has been exhausted. This can leave drivers on the hook for significant out-of-pocket costs in the event of an accident even when Uber or Lyft provides some coverage.
- Disclosure: Failing to disclose to your insurer that you are using your vehicle for rideshare work can lead to your policy being canceled or a claim being denied. Always be upfront and honest about your vehicle use. Talk to an insurance agent from your insurer about policy options, coverage, and exclusions relating to rideshare work.
What You Should Know as a Rideshare Passenger
As a rideshare passenger, you should know the following about insurance before hailing a ride:
- Rideshare company insurance: Both Uber and Lyft provide third-party liability insurance coverage for their passengers. If you're injured during a ride, this policy can cover your medical bills and other damages up to a certain limit. But it might not. You should always talk to our attorneys to understand what coverage could be available if you are injured in a rideshare accident.
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage: Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) applies if the driver who causes the accident is without insurance or lacks sufficient insurance coverage to fully compensate all injured parties, hence the terms Uninsured and Underinsured. Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft often have UM/UIM coverage that is afforded to you as an injured passenger. Additionally, if you hold this type of insurance on your own auto policy, it might be usable if you were hurt as a rideshare passenger in an accident caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver. In Oklahoma, it is important to know that your own UM/UIM insurance follows you wherever you go and may provide an additional layer of protection, even if you weren’t in your personal vehicle. Whether you trying to ascertain what insurance coverage is available to protect you or trying to navigate the various layers of coverage and multiple insurance companies involved in a rideshare accident, it is important to consult with an experienced attorney who understands the insurance framework and can guide you through the complex claims process.
- Personal injury lawsuits: If your damages exceed the rideshare company’s insurance coverage, or the company denies your claim, you may need to consider filing a personal injury lawsuit to pursue any uncovered or contested damages. Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to sue the rideshare driver or the rideshare company. This complex legal process should only be attempted with the help of a skilled rideshare injury attorney.
- Involvement of other insurers: In some cases, the rideshare driver’s personal auto insurance may also come into play. Do not be surprised if your rideshare injury claim involves multiple insurance parties, which is another reason to work with a lawyer as soon as possible.
Rideshare companies are not liable for the accidents that their drivers cause. However, the rideshare company will be responsible for a portion of the accident claim if the rideshare passenger has purchased rideshare coverage. It is important to have an experienced rideshare accident attorney on your side.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a rideshare accident, our attorneys are ready to help. We know how to investigate Uber and Lyft accidents and how to hold rideshare companies accountable. Our Oklahoma City rideshare accident lawyers are ready to fight for you.
You can rely on our tenacious and hardworking team to fight tirelessly for every penny you are owed.