Recently, a driver in San Francisco was part of the Uber service for ridesharing in the California city. The 57-year-old was driving along when he struck a 6-year-old little girl as she was crossing the street with her mother and brother. He was quickly taken into custody and booked for suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and failure to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk. Many have been talking about the case with the realization in mind that the driver could not only be held liable for his actions, but also the company to which he was employed for employing an irresponsible driver.
For those of you who do not know, Uber is a ridesharing company that is headquartered in San Francisco and operated under something known as the Uber mobile app on smartphones. Consumers will submit a trip request that is routed to other drivers, who will receive a notification and pick up the consumer. They will then safely take them to their destination. It is not a taxi service but instead a service used for those who need a ride anywhere they want when they are unable to make the drive themselves.
Uber accidents appear to be rare these days; however, they are not unheard of. The case involving the 6-year-old girl is one example of how accidents can and do occur at times, even for Uber drivers. But if you are- who will be held responsible for your injuries? Will you be able to recover from the driver, company, or will you be held responsible to pay for your own injuries?
Passengers and Others Injured by Uber Drivers
These big-name ridesharing companies carry insurance for their drivers and the people within. This means, if you are injured in an Uber accident, your injuries will probably be covered. California actually requires these companies to carry a certain amount of commercial liability insurance to cover accidents and injuries. This means that employers will generally be held liable for their employees’ accident. The biggest issue involved here is the fact that there have been disagreements in court in the past over whether or not the Uber driver is considered an employee or not. Uber does identify its drivers as employees if they get into an accident.
However, what happens if you are not a passenger and you are hit by an Uber driver? What if you were the driver of another vehicle involved in the accident or a pedestrian like in the case involving the 6-year-old crossing the street? Determining liability may become a bit tougher in this case. If the driver did not have a passenger at the time and was not covered under the company’s insurance policy, then determining fault in the crash will be just like any other car accident. If you can determine that fault falls on the driver, then he or she will be held liable for your injuries and you may be covered by their own insurance policy.
If you have been injured in an accident involving an Uber driver, you may need legal help immediately. Car accident personal injuries can be complex sometimes, and having a lawyer represent you can help you great lengths when all is said and done. Call Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi today for more information on what options you have!