A Lyft accident lawyer can help people who have been injured, through no fault of their own, as a result of an accident involving the rideshare company. Rideshare companies, including Lyft, are popular for their ability to match passengers and drivers at the tap of a button. However, a lawsuit alleges that the company and its driver were negligent in the death of a Lyft passenger. Individuals who have been injured in accidents involving a Lyft car could be eligible to recover compensation with the help of a car accident attorney.
For more information, contact Attorney Group today. Our consultations are free, confidential and without any obligation on your part. We can help answer your questions, and if you choose to pursue a claim we can connect you with an affiliated Lyft accident lawyer who can assist you throughout the legal process.
Have You Seen a Lyft Accident Lawyer Commercial?
You may have seen a Lyft accident commercial on television and wondered whether you or a loved one have been affected by the negligence of a Lyft driver and, if so, whether you are eligible to pursue a claim against the Lyft driver or others. The purpose of this article is to provide you with additional information so that you have a better understanding of your options.
What is Lyft?
Lyft is a transportation network company based in San Francisco, California. The company was launched in 2012 and now operates in over 200 cities in the United States. Originally called Zimride, the company focused on ridesharing (carpooling) for longer distances between cities, linking drivers and passengers through an application on Facebook.
Similar to rideshare company Uber, Lyft started as an on-demand ridesharing network for shorter trips within larger cities. To connect with Lyft drivers, passengers must first download the Lyft mobile app, sign up and set up a valid way to pay their fares. When a passenger wants a ride, he or she requests a ride from a nearby driver using their smartphone. Once a request has been made, a Lyft driver picks up the passenger and takes them to their destination.
Passengers may choose from four ways to ride, including:
- Lyft Line – Available in select U.S. cities, Lyft Line matches riders with other riders going in the same direction, and riders split the cost of the ride.
- Lyft – Available nationwide, Lyft is a personal ride that fits up to four passengers
- Lyft Plus – A “supersized” ride with up to six seats. Lyft Plus is available nationwide.
- Lyft Premier – Available in select U.S. cities, Lyft Premier is a high-end option for riders who want a luxury car.
As of September 2016, Lyft rides are available in over 30 states in the U.S. as well as Washington D.C.
Who Drives for Lyft?
Before working for Lyft, drivers must meet certain requirements. Drivers must be 21 or older and own an iPhone or Android phone. As part of the Lyft approval process, drivers must go through a DMV check as well as a national and county background check, stretching back a minimum of seven years or longer. Drivers are disqualified for violent crimes, felonies, sexual offenses or drug-related convictions. Drivers must be a covered party on their car’s insurance policy and have in-state license plates.
Lyft cars must pass a 19-point vehicle inspection, in addition to any city or state requirements, to ensure driver and passenger safety. While requirements may vary, Lyft cars must have four external door handles and at least a total of five seat belts. In some cases, drivers must apply for and receive a business license, for-hire permits, and appropriate city and state certifications.
Drivers choose when they want to drive. Drivers get a portion of ride fees from passengers, and money is deposited into a driver account weekly or can be cashed out immediately.
Do Lyft Drivers Have Car Insurance?
Yes. Lyft drivers must be a covered party on their car’s insurance policy. Additionally, there are four other insurance coverages included in Lyft’s insurance policies, including:
- Contingent Liability – Driver is waiting for a ride request while in “driver mode.”
- Primary Liability Coverage – Lyft’s primary liability insurance acts as the primary coverage from the time a driver accepts a ride until the end of the ride. The policy has a $1 million accident limit.
- Contingent Collision and Comprehensive Coverage – As long as a driver has collision or comprehensive coverage on their personal automobile policy, Lyft’s policy is designed to cover physical damage to a driver’s vehicle.
- Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) – In the event of an accident with an UM or UIM, UM/UIM coverage will apply up to $1 million per accident.
There are a variety of reasons car accidents occur. Most fatal car crashes in the U.S. are caused by a driver’s failure to keep in their lane, failure to yield right of way, and reckless or careless driving. Likewise, distracted driving can potentially increase a person’s chance of having an automobile accident. This includes the use of cell phones, mobile devices, and in-vehicle technologies, including navigation systems used by Lyft drivers.
Common types of injuries sustained in automobile accidents include:
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injury
- Other head and brain injuries
- Spine injuries
- Neck injuries
- Internal injuries
Pedestrians who are involved in automobile accidents may have damages to their legs, feet and toes as well as other injuries. Additionally, motorcycle riders may be subject to more serious injuries as a result of a crash with an automobile. In addition to physical injuries, people who are involved in car accidents may also suffer from emotional and psychological distress, leading to post-traumatic stress disorder, loss of a loved one and other psychological injuries. People who have been injured as a result of an accident involving a Lyft vehicle may be able to file a lawsuit and seek compensation with the help of a Lyft accident lawyer.
Who is Responsible Should a Lyft Accident Happen?
Because Lyft drivers are considered to be users of the platform and therefore not employees, those who have been injured in an accident involving a Lyft vehicle may have trouble determining who is liable in the case of an accident if one should occur. Because drivers and vehicles are licensed and regulated through the state or municipality, traditional cab companies fall under specific laws regarding car accident fault, insurance and compensation. In some cases, rideshare insurance policy may not compensate for an accident that occurs when a driver is not “on the clock.”
Has There Been a Lyft Accident Lawsuit?
A Lyft accident lawyer notes that the mother and boyfriend of a Lyft passenger who was killed in a car accident in 2014 are now seeking damages from the company, claiming that its driver’s negligence caused the accident. According to the The San Francisco Chronicle, the accident occurred during inclement weather, when the Lyft driver swerved to avoid another car and lost control of his own vehicle. The Lyft car crashed into two trees, fatally wounding one passenger and leaving the other with serious injuries.
According to the report, authorities have already concluded that the Lyft driver was at fault. Despite the rainy weather, he was reportedly traveling above the posted speed limit just before the crash occurred and has a history of speeding and has been cited for this violation at least once before. Unfortunately, although Lyft has not denied liability, it hasn’t yet offered compensation to the victim’s surviving loved ones.
Has There Been a Lyft Settlement?
While some lawsuits may have been filed against Lyft drivers, including one filed in California, there have been no accident settlements involving Lyft cars or their drivers as of September 2016. Some drivers for Lyft, however, have filed unpaid overtime lawsuits against the company seeking compensation for various claimed wage law violations.
Has There Been a Lyft Class Action?
In addition to a Lyft accident lawsuit filed in California, Lyft drivers have filed lawsuits against the company claiming that they have been misclassified as independent contractors. According to an article published by Bloomberg Technology, a U.S. district judge approved a $27 million settlement as part of a class action lawsuit filed on behalf of drivers against Lyft.
About 163,000 Lyft drivers are eligible for the opportunity to take part in the settlement, object to it or opt out before a final settlement hearing. As part of the settlement agreement, drivers will remain contractors, not employees, and are now able to protect themselves from arbitrary deactivation.
How a Lyft Accident Lawyer Can Help
Lyft and Lyft drivers have a duty to provide a safe environment for its passengers, drivers, other commuters, and pedestrians. If there are risks of harm associated with Lyft and its drivers, the company must also provide adequate warnings and safeguards. If a Lyft driver fails to fulfill this duty, they, as well as the company, could be held liable in lawsuits for injuries that may result.
With the help of a Lyft accident lawyer, people injured as a result of a car accident involving a Lyft car through no fault of their own may be eligible to recover money for:
- Medical Expenses
- Lost Wages
- Pain and Suffering
The families of those who have died in Lyft car accidents may be eligible to recover money for funeral expenses and the pain that comes with losing a loved one.
For more information, contact Attorney Group. After you contact us, an affiliated Lyft accident lawyer will follow up to answer questions that you might have. There is no cost or obligation to speak with us, and any information you provide will be kept confidential.
Please note that the law limits the time you have to pursue a claim or file a lawsuit for an injury. If you think you have a case, you should not delay taking action.