If you’ve been involved in a rideshare accident in Florida and need assistance with your claim, it’s important to find experienced lawyers who specialize in personal injury and have knowledge of the rideshare industry. Here’s a step-by-step guide on navigating rideshare accident claims with Florida lawyers:
- Seek medical attention: Your health and safety should be your top priority. Make sure to seek immediate medical attention for any injuries sustained in the accident. Prompt medical documentation will be crucial for your claim.
- Gather information: Collect as much information as possible about the accident. This includes the contact details, insurance information, and vehicle details of all parties involved. Take photographs of the accident scene, damage to vehicles, and any visible injuries. If there were witnesses, try to obtain their contact information as well.
- Report the accident: Contact the police to report the accident and obtain an official report. This documentation will serve as an important piece of evidence for your claim. Additionally, report the accident to the rideshare company involved (e.g., Uber, Lyft) through their app or customer support.
- Consult with a personal injury attorney: Seek legal representation from a personal injury attorney in Florida who has experience handling rideshare accident claims. Look for lawyers who specialize in personal injury and have a track record of success in similar cases. Consider scheduling initial consultations with a few attorneys to discuss your case and evaluate their expertise and approach.
- Provide your attorney with relevant information: Share all the information you have gathered, including the accident report, medical records, photographs, and insurance details. Your attorney will review these materials and guide you on the best course of action.
- Determine liability: Establishing liability is crucial in a rideshare accident claim. Depending on the circumstances, liability may lie with the rideshare driver, another driver involved, or a combination of parties. Your attorney will investigate the accident, gather evidence, and work to determine who is at fault.
- Communicate with insurance companies: Notify your insurance company about the accident, as well as the rideshare company’s insurance provider. Be cautious when communicating with insurance companies, as they may try to settle for less than you deserve. It’s advisable to let your attorney handle discussions and negotiations with the insurance companies on your behalf.
- Document all damages: Keep detailed records of all expenses and damages resulting from the accident, including medical bills, vehicle repair costs, lost wages, and any other relevant financial losses. These records will support your claim for compensation.
- Negotiate a fair settlement: Your attorney will work to negotiate a fair settlement with the responsible parties’ insurance companies. They will consider your damages, medical expenses, lost income, and potential long-term effects of the accident. If a fair settlement cannot be reached through negotiations, your attorney may recommend filing a lawsuit and taking the case to court.
- Litigation, if necessary: If a settlement cannot be reached, your attorney will guide you through the litigation process. They will represent you in court, presenting your case and advocating for your rights. A skilled personal injury attorney will fight for fair compensation on your behalf.
Remember, every case is unique, and the legal process can vary depending on the specifics of your situation. It’s essential to consult with an attorney who can provide personalized guidance based on your circumstances.
How Is Liability Determined In A Ridesharing Accident?
Liability in a ridesharing accident can become complicated. The first issue to be determined is the identity of the liable party. In many cases, liability may be attributed to a combination of parties, including drivers, passengers, and vehicle owners. The rideshare company’s liability will depend on whether the ride was prearranged or an on-demand service. If the ride was prearranged, the company’s liability will be limited to the driver, and these limits will vary depending on state law. Once in the vehicle, most jurisdictions require that the company’s liability extends to the actual driver.
On-demand service companies’ liability in a ridesharing accident may be determined in different ways. For example, if a limousine is involved and it was not prearranged, the on-demand service company’s liability may be limited to its insurance policy limits, or it may have no liability at all. If a limousine was prearranged, any applicable law might impose limits or additional restrictions regarding its liability.
Recovering Damages After A Rideshare Collision:
If you’re involved in an accident while riding in a rideshare vehicle, whether through no fault of your own or due to the negligence of another driver, you may be entitled to receive compensation for any injuries or other losses you suffer as a result. Florida law regarding vehicle collisions and injuries is slightly different for self-employed or independent contractor drivers, in contrast to employed drivers who receive worker’s compensation benefits. Although the law is still developing, there are certain issues to keep in mind when planning your case. Some of the damages you may recover include:
- Medical costs: The cost of medical treatment related to your injuries is a very common item in a victim’s damages. The jury will be told that the costs of medical treatment are in addition to any out-of-pocket expenses you have already paid. If you do not have insurance to cover such costs, it will be up to the jury to determine what your liability would have been if you did have coverage.
- Auto repairs: If your vehicle was damaged in the accident, you may be able to receive compensation for the cost of repairing the vehicle.
- Lost income: If you were unable to work due to your injuries and/or needed to use time off from work for medical appointments, this would be a recoverable item. This is in addition to any wages lost due to the inability to return back to work at the same level of wage-earning capacity.
- Pain and suffering: Compensation for pain and suffering is always difficult for juries, so it will be up to you and your attorneys as a whole team on how best to approach this issue.
- Emotional Distress: Your mental and emotional distress over the injuries you suffered, as well as the accident itself, maybe a recoverable loss. Emotional damages are very commonly awarded.
Rideshare companies are becoming more prevalent, and the number of accidents and injuries is increasing. Those who have been injured by a rideshare driver should seek legal representation. An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to navigate the complexities of Florida’s law regarding these accidents and injuries. They can help you determine what potential damages you may recover from the responsible party or parties in question, as well as handle all of your legal needs during the process.