Rideshare services like Uber have grown in popularity with young adults due to convenience and low prices. Unfortunately, traffic collisions involving Uber drivers can also result in terrible accidents and injuries. Due to Uber’s complicated insurance coverage policies, however, it can be difficult for victims to receive the compensation they deserve.
Our auto accident attorneys want you to remember these important tips if you are injured in an Uber traffic accident.
“There are many complexities involving the insurance coverage of Uber drivers that put injured victims at a possible disadvantage,” says Mike Wyatt, auto accident attorney. “This is because Uber drivers are not classified as ‘employees.’ They are technically independent contractors, or third-party service providers.”
Uber drivers are covered by their own individual auto insurance when they are off duty. When they are ‘on the clock,’ but in-between fares, Uber drivers are covered by their personal auto insurance and Uber’s additional contingent liability coverage. Depending on the state and the carrier Uber chooses, this only pays up to their coverage limit for any injury or property damage.
“Ultimately, this coverage puts a limit on your emotional and physical suffering,” explains Mike. “If you are a passenger in the Uber car and the Uber driver causes an accident that results in your injury, then your claim against the company cannot exceed their coverage limit. In order to receive fair compensation, a victim would have to seek a claim against the Uber driver whose personal coverage would not cover the extant of the damages.”
The situation is just as complicated when a pedestrian, or motorist/passenger in another vehicle is injured by an Uber driver. If the accident occurs when the driver is transporting a passenger, then Uber’s insurance will only cover up to their coverage limit. If the driver is off duty or in-between fares, then it falls on their individual auto insurance.