Nearly everyone you meet has either taken a rideshare vehicle somewhere, knows someone who has taken a ride, or has at least heard of rideshare companies. Companies like Uber are capitalizing on the convenience people experience summoning a vehicle to their location and taking the ride where they need to go at a moments notice. Uber is still a relatively new concept which leads to questions and issues that have not been addressed before. Just because you are a passenger in an Uber does not decrease your chance of being involved in a car accident.
How Does Insurance Work in a Greenville, SC Rideshare Accident?
South Carolina is an “at fault” state for insurance. This means that a driver who is negligent in their actions, causing an injury to another party is responsible for damages to the injured party. An injured person is able to file a personal injury suit to seek compensation for their injuries.
In any car accident, it must be determined who was at fault. In a typical collision, drivers for Uber are considered independent contractors. This means that they are not employees of Uber. This seemingly minor distinction can make all the difference in determining liability for injuries and damages caused by an accident. The biggest issue in wrecks involving Uber drivers is what insurance is applicable to the situation. Uber carries $1 million in liability insurance. However, that liability insurance is not always applicable. There are four common situations in which an accident might occur. This four situation all have different rules regarding insurance liability.
- Offline Driver: Since an Uber driver operates out of their own vehicle, determining when they are working or not working is key to determining Uber’s liability. If a driver is “offline” this means that they are not accepting any ride request; they are not working. Therefore, Uber’s liability insurance is not applicable to the accident. Only the driver’s personal liability insurance that they carry would be used to cover any damages.
- Online Driver: The alternative to a driver being offline, is a driver being “online” and accepting ride requests. Without a passenger in the vehicle, however, Uber will only cover $50,000 for injuries and $25,000 in property damage. While insurance from Uber is an option, a driver’s personal insurance will be used as the primary insurance.
- Accepted Ride Request: After a driver has accepted a ride request and is on the way to pick a passenger up, is when Uber’s $1 million liability insurance police will be applicable.
- A passenger in Vehicle: Much like a driver accepts a ride request, a driver with a passenger in their vehicle will also trigger Uber’s $1 million liability insurance.
If you have been involved in an accident during an Uber ride – whether as a passenger of that vehicle or an independent driver on the road, you may need help filing your claim. Double Aught Injury Lawyers can help you. We are experienced car accident attorneys who stay up to date on current laws, like any updates to Uber liabilities. Contact us today for a FREE case review to get the help you deserve.
Bryan Ramey is a Personal Injury Attorney who practices in the upstate of South Carolina. He graduated from The University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 27 years now. Bryan Ramey believes in representing the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.