More northeastern Pennsylvania travelers are using on-demand transportation services like Uber and Lyft than ever before. Since their inception, these companies have defended numerous lawsuits filed on behalf of rider- customers, primarily for personal injuries suffered as a result of their Uber experience. So this begs the question, the answer of which is the subject of this blog: What happens if an Uber driver causes a motor vehicle accident and passengers onboard suffer injuries? How are Uber riders compensated for their losses? Whose insurance policy covers the losses incurred by Uber passengers?
For those readers that are unfamiliar with Uber, here’s a quick synopsis. Customers download the company’s smartphone “app” and use it to request service. When an on-duty Uber driver accepts the request, the app displays the estimated time of pickup, providing further notice when the driver is about to arrive.
Uber requires all of its drivers to have their own car insurance,while providing supplemental insurance coverage depending upon the driver’s stage of service. While an Uber driver is offline, he is covered by his own insurance policy and the coverage limits contained therein. Between the time an Uber driver goes online and accepts a trip request (Period 1), he is covered by limits of $50,000 for bodily injury, $100,000 per accident, and $25,000 for property damage per accident. This same coverage is also maintained by Uber on behalf of the driver in case he doesn’t maintain coverage of at least this amount.
Uber then provides drivers with liability insurance coverage, whether they are en route driving to pick up the rider, which is Period 2, or have a rider in their vehicle, which is Period 3. This amounts to $1 million bodily injury and property damage coverage per accident. In late 2013, Uber added uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage to address the situation where an uninsured or underinsured motorist is involved in an accident with a rideshare vehicle and is the party at fault. This policy is also in the amount of $1 million and covers bodily injury for all passengers of the Uber vehicle.
A personal injury case brought against an on-demand ride service like Uber or Lyft is complicated because of the issues involved in identifying which party is going to provide compensation for loss. Such cases necessitate the need for an experienced team of attorneys like those at Powell Law, where we’ve protected the rights of Pennsylvanians for over 110 years. If you have a injury related to use of an on-demand transporation service, consult the experienced personal injury attorneys at Powell Law. Your first consultation is free. Contact us online or call (570) 961-0777.