Miami Uber Accident Lawyer
Uber may have changed the way people get around, but it’s also led to a significant number of passenger injuries, deaths, and lawsuits. According to Who’s Driving You (www.whosdrivingyou.org), the popular ridesharing service (along with its peer, Lyft) has a history of 217 alleged sexual harassment and assault cases, 23 deaths, and 10 alleged kidnappings. Not to mention hundreds of vehicle accidents that have occurred in the eight years since Uber started its service. If you’ve been in an Uber crash in Miami, you have a more complex case ahead of you than in a typical Miami car accident. Here’s what you need to do to protect your rights.
Stay Calm and Check for Injuries
First, remain calm. Since you were not driving, odds are no one can hold you responsible for the accident or subsequent injuries. Check yourself for injuries first, then help those around you. In Florida you have a legal obligation to stay at the scene of a car accident and make sure everyone is okay. Call 911 and request an ambulance for any injuries, if necessary. Seek medical attention right away after an Uber crash, even if you don’t think you’re injured. You may have sustained a head, neck, or back injury that doesn’t show immediate symptoms.
Report the Incident to Police
Even if the Uber accident was minor, call the Miami police and report what happened. Police can make a report of the incident part of the official record, preventing any doubt about the merits of your case in the future. The officer will record the name and contact information of your Uber driver, license plate numbers, your information, and that of any other passengers, bystanders, drivers, or eyewitnesses. If you suffered any injuries, report these to the police. If you aren’t sure whether or not you’re injured, say you don’t know instead of no.
Gather Information from Your Uber Driver
Since Uber is a peer-to-peer car-ride service, it escapes many liabilities of typical taxi companies. Uber does not technically employ its drivers – instead, it provides an app that links available drivers in the area to people searching for rides. Uber drivers are independent contractors working for the company. As such, Uber drivers are typically liable for any at-fault accidents and passenger injuries while on the clock. After an accident, get your Uber driver’s name, phone number, and insurance information.
Pursue Damage Recovery
At this point, you have a few options for pursuing compensation for your Uber accident–related damages. You can report the incident to Uber, at which point the company will email the driver an Incident Report Form to fill out. Uber will then submit the driver’s form to the appropriate insurance companies. Insurers will investigate the claim and determine whether or not to provide coverage. An insurance claims adjuster will contact you to discuss the accident and your injuries.
If you do not trust Uber and/or your driver to handle your claim or if you would rather take care of it on your own, consider taking your claim into your own hands. Report the accident to your insurance company and let them take care of communications with Uber and/or the driver. Uber carries $1 million in insurance coverage specifically for personal injuries, property damage, and wrongful death.
Should the driver’s insurance company deny your claim or fail to fully cover your injuries, consider retaining a Miami personal injury attorney. Uber is still a relatively new service, and lawsuits against the company and/or its drivers can be complex. An experienced lawyer can help you defend your rights and pursue fair compensation for your personal injuries, accident-related wage losses, pain and suffering, and other damages. A lawsuit may be the best course of action, depending on your incident.