Due to their convenience and lower rates, Uber rideshare services have become exceedingly popular with young adults. However, Uber drivers can also cause horrible traffic accidents that result in injury and death. Unfortunately, it is difficult for victims to receive fair compensation because of Uber’s complex insurance coverage policies.
There are several important things our auto accident attorneys want you to remember in case of an Uber 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.”
When Uber drivers are off duty, they are covered by their own individual auto insurance. However, when they are on duty and between fares, then drivers are additionally covered by Uber’s contingent liability coverage. The extent of this coverage greatly depends on the state and the carrier chosen by Uber. It will only pay up to Uber’s coverage limit for an injury and property damage.
“Ultimately, this coverage puts a limit on your emotional and physical suffering,” says 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.”
When an Uber driver injures a pedestrian, or motorist/passenger in another vehicle, then the situation is just as complicated. Uber’s insurance only covers up to their coverage limit if the accident takes place while the driver is transporting a passenger. The driver’s individual auto insurance is responsible for coverage if the driver is off duty or in-between fares.