What Happens If Your Uber Gets in an Accident?
Posted on Sunday, October 1st, 2023 at 9:00 am
Ridesharing apps like Uber have revolutionized the way we travel in Texas. But what if your quick ride turns into an unexpected accident? Getting into a crash is always a shock, and when you’re an Uber passenger, the situation can be even more confusing. Who’s at fault? What should you do next? Are there steps you need to take to protect your rights?
At Portner Bond, PLLC, we understand the uncertainty and stress that come with being injured in Uber accidents. That’s why we’ve crafted this guide to help you through the aftermath of an Uber crash in Texas. Let’s get started.
What to Do Immediately After an Uber Accident in Texas
Just like with other car accidents in Beaumont, your actions immediately after a crash have an outsized influence on a personal injury claim or lawsuit. Here’s what to do to safeguard your rights and set yourself up to recover maximum compensation:
- Contact the Police: It’s crucial to report the accident. They’ll document the scene, and the accident report will be vital for your claim later.
- Document Everything: Use your phone to take photos of the accident scene, your injuries, and vehicle damage. These images serve as evidence of the collision and any resulting visible injuries.
- Gather Information: Obtain the Uber driver’s name, insurance details, and license number. It’s also a good idea to collect contact details from any eyewitnesses.
- Seek Medical Attention: No matter how you feel, see a doctor right away. Some injuries might not show symptoms immediately.
- Notify Uber: Use the Uber app to report the accident. They need to know, and your report starts their internal process for paying an injury claim.
- Don’t Discuss Fault: Avoid discussing who’s at fault with the Uber driver or other parties. Doing so might hurt your case.
- Keep Track of Expenses: From medical bills to lost wages, document every cost related to the accident.
- Stay Off Social Media: Don’t discuss the accident online. Uber or an opposing insurance company can use anything you say against you.
- Consult a Knowledgeable Attorney: Uber accidents are more involved than typical car accidents. You want an experienced attorney to guide you through the legal process and work to maximize your compensation.
Fault and Liability in Texas Uber Accidents
Fault and liability are two of the most complex issues in Texas Uber accident claims. Let’s break down how liability works in these cases, depending on your role in the collision:
- Injured passengers in Uber vehicles – According to Uber’s website, the company provides up to $1 million in liability coverage for passengers injured in crashes. In plain English, that means that if you’re injured in a crash that an Uber driver caused while you’re their passenger, the company should cover your injuries, lost wages, and pain and suffering for up to $1 million. However, if someone other than the Uber driver caused the crash, you must pursue compensation from the at-fault party’s insurer. Uber could still be on the hook if the other driver’s insurance were insufficient to cover all your losses.
- Injured drivers in other vehicles – If you were driving another vehicle and sustained injuries in a crash caused by an Uber driver, you could potentially file a claim with both the at-fault driver’s insurance company and Uber’s insurer.
- Injured Uber drivers – Uber’s corporate insurance policy provides liability insurance to cover those who are injured in an accident caused by an Uber driver. This liability coverage does not apply to Uber drivers, though the company’s collision and comprehensive coverage may cover the Uber driver’s vehicle repairs. If you’re an Uber driver and you’re injured in a crash you caused, you must turn to your own auto or health insurance to cover your losses. If someone else caused the crash, you’ll turn to the at-fault party’s insurance to cover your accident-related losses.
Insurance Coverage for Uber Accidents in Texas
Uber offers two different levels of insurance coverage based on what the driver is doing at the time of an accident. When an Uber driver is transporting a fare or on the way to pick one up, the company provides up to $1 million in liability coverage.
Uber also offers more limited coverage while their drivers are logged into the app while waiting for a fare. In these situations, Uber’s liability insurance includes the following coverage, provided the driver’s own insurance does not apply:
- $50,000 in bodily injury coverage per person
- $100,000 in bodily injury coverage per accident
- $25,000 in property damage coverage per accident
Suing Uber After an Accident
Suing a corporate giant like Uber directly after an accident is an uphill battle. One of the primary reasons it’s challenging is Uber’s drivers are “independent contractors” rather than employees. This classification shields the company from direct liability in many accident cases. However, there are circumstances where Uber itself could be liable for a collision:
- Engaging Unsafe Drivers: If Uber failed to conduct a thorough background check and worked with someone with a criminal history, they might be liable if the driver attacks a passenger.
- Faulty App Design: If a glitch or design flaw in the Uber app caused or contributed to the accident, the company might be liable.
- Violating Local Regulations: If Uber did not comply with local transport or safety regulations and their lack of compliance resulted in an accident, they could be legally responsible for the collision.
If you’ve been hurt in an Uber accident, it is unlikely that you would sue them directly. However, there’s a chance you might need to file a claim against their liability insurance policy, which means you’ll be going up against a big corporation intent on keeping its profits. That’s why it’s so critical to work with an experienced lawyer who understands how the rideshare company operates and how to pursue full compensation effectively.
Contact Our Beaumont, TX, Uber Accident Lawyers Now
The legal complexities of Uber accidents in Texas require a skilled and experienced attorney. The Beaumont Uber accident lawyers of Portner Bond, PLLC understand these complicated issues and can help you fight for fair compensation. Call (409) 838-4444 now or complete our contact form for a free consultation.