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Articles Tagged with rideshare

For a potential passenger, booking a trip through a Miami rideshare company is a simple process that involves just a few clicks on the mobile app. From the perspective of an Uber or Lyft driver, interacting with the app is slightly more complicated. The underlying reason is grounded in the relationship between a rideshare service – defined as atransportation network company’ (TNC) under Florida law – and the person who provides the services using his or her own vehicle. TNC drivers are independent contractors instead of employees, eliminating the possibility that you can pursue the rideshare company if you were hurt in a vehicle collision.

However, the distinction does not take away your rights as an Uber or Lyft accident victim. Instead, the focus is on the TNC driver’s usage of the app, based upon three key periods of interaction. A Miami rideshare accidents lawyer can explain in more detail, but a general description may be helpful.

Three Key Periods for TNC Driver App Usage

Considering the year-round mild temperatures and gentle ocean breezes, it is easy to see why many South Floridians choose to get around by foot or bicycle. Walkscore ratings for Miami are proof, giving the city high marks at 78 for walkability and a 65 for bike riding. The downside is that the increase in foot and bicycle traffic can cause some tension with the number of motorized vehicles, especially in the heart of downtown and during rush hours. Add to that an explosion in the number of people using Uber and Lyft, and you have a potentially disastrous scenario that can lead to serious rideshare accidents with pedestrians and bicycle riders.

Fortunately, it does not matter if you were in a motorized vehicle to seek your legal remedies as an injured victim. Florida laws protect the interests of pedestrians and bicyclists, so you should discuss your options with a Miami rideshare accidents attorney

Vulnerable Road Users Have Rights After a Rideshare Accident

As part of its mission to provide safety information to insurance companies and auto makers, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) routinely conducts studies on how to reduce the risks of accidents and potential for serious injuries. A recent study should be of particular concern to any motorist or passenger, especially for those who use ridesharing services in Miami: The dangers of riding in the back seat of a vehicle, a common practice for Uber and Lyft passengers, are serious. IIHS researchers expressed serious concerns about multiple crash-related factors, after analyzing the details of almost 120 collisions that caused death to back seat passengers.

The increased risk for back seat occupants is alarming, but the truth is that you have rights after an Uber or Lyft crash no matter where you were sitting. It is important to speak with a Miami rideshare accidents attorney about the legal concepts, but you may also benefit from some information about the threat to back seat riders.

Seat Belt Usage and Rideshare Services

The benefits of ridesharing services are well-known to many people who use Uber or Lyft to get around Miami, but you may not give much thought about the advantages from the perspective of the driver. BuildFire, a mobile app developer, reported some interesting statistics that provide insight:

  • Globally, more than 3 million people drive as independent contractors for Uber, fulfilling 40 million ride requests per month;
  • The average Uber driver earns $364 per month;

Even if you do not use ridesharing services on a regular basis to get around Miami, you are no doubt familiar with the popularity of Uber, Lyft, and other transportation network companies. Statistics on annual Uber trips indicate that ridership went from 140 million in 2014 to 6.9 billion in 2019 – an explosion due in part to the ease-of-use, low cost, and many other convenience-based factors. However, your willingness to let someone else drive does not improve safety or act to reduce the potential for serious car accidents. Passengers who use rideshare services are not immune to severe injuries in the event of a crash.

From a legal standpoint, Uber and Lyft collisions are slightly different than other auto crashes. It is important to know what to do if you were hurt, and one of the first steps is consulting with a Miami rideshare accidents attorney about your rights. Some additional tips may also be useful.

  • Seek proper medical care. Getting treatment for your injuries is a top priority after a ridesharing accident, so head to an emergency room or urgent care center right away. Not only does prompt treatment support your health, but it also affects your legal rights. Delays can lead to the assumption that you were not hurt or only sustained minor injuries.

If you use ridesharing services to get around Miami, you are probably drawn to the convenience, reasonable cost, and ease of being able to bring up the app and arrange a trip. Millions of others apparently agree with you, leading to astronomical success for companies like Uber and Lyft – which boast $17.6 billion in combined global net revenue. Of course, when an industry demands such an enormous market share, you can expect that lawmakers will step in to regulate it. Key legislation and agency regulations govern everything from the relationships between drivers and rideshare services, to insurance and fare limitations. Some of the laws that apply to motor vehicle accidents will be extremely important if you were hurt in a crash while riding in an Uber or Lyft. Your Miami rideshare accidents lawyer will take the lead in handling the legal issues, but you should be aware of the following Florida rideshare accident laws.

Laws Regarding Compensation in an Uber or Lyft Crash

A ridesharing collision is a type of personal injury case, so your monetary damages are similar to what you would receive in any other auto accident. In a successful claim, you can recover compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

andras-vas-559764-unsplash-copy-300x200There is no question that getting around town by Uber, Lyft, or other rideshare is convenient, but that does not make it safer. Any vehicle on the roadway is at risk of an accident, including those that are part of a “transportation network company” (TNC), as these services are defined by Florida law. The same statute also regulates the operations of TNCs and provides certain requirements for insurance purposes in the event of the accident. It is good to know that you are covered in an Uber/Lyft crash that was not your fault, but the legislative landscape does make these matters more complex than a typical collision. You should discuss your circumstances with a Florida car accident attorney. 

TNCs and Insurance Requirements in Florida 

As of January 2017, Florida made certain insurance coverages required for TNCs and the drivers who use their digital services to provide ridesharing services. The insurance must cover the TNC driver as follows:

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