More and more people are using ride sharing transportation services such as Uber or Lyft in large cities such as New York. Ride sharing transportation services have different rules than regular taxis for hire do.
The good news is that in New York City ride sharing transportation services such as Uber or LYFT are required to have at least $1 million in liability insurance policy. So that if you are seriously injured while riding in an Uber or LYFT vehicle, there is an insurance policy that will pay you what you are entitled to.
The law in New York City requires all taxis to have $100,000 in insurance coverage in the event a person is injured by a taxi, whether a pedestrian, driver or passenger of another car, or as a passenger riding in the taxi. This $100,000 is the most a person injured by a regular taxi can ever recover, regardless of the extent or severity of the injuries suffered. (Although $100,000 is often not enough insurance to adequately compensate the seriously injured person, the taxi industry unfortunately has a powerful lobby in Albany that keeps the mandatory insurance requirements as low as possible, and injured people do not have any lobby at all.)
The bad news is that this $1 million in liability insurance policy only applies if the Uber driver is actually driving a passenger for Uber and is not using the car for a personal errand or for some other purpose. In that event, it is the driver’s personal liability insurance policy that applies, and most times this policy is for the absolute minimum required by New York law, which is only $25,000.
At our law firm, Jaroslawicz & Jaros, in the past few years we have represented many persons injured in car accidents involving ride sharing transportation services such as Uber or Lyft. Injury victims in these cases find that their insurance companies will almost always try to avoid paying and will deny that they have any coverage or deny that the coverage applies to your accident. The insurance company for the ride sharing transportation service will try to insist that you look to the driver’s personal liability insurance policy for your insurance coverage.
To make it even more complicated, what often happens is that the driver’s personal liability insurance company also refuses to pay and takes the position that there is no insurance coverage because the driver is prohibited by their policy from driving for work purposes or using the vehicle as a ride share vehicle for hire.
So that although all lawsuits involving motor vehicles have what are called issues of liability, which boils down to, who is at fault, as well as other issues concerning the severity and extent of the injuries suffered, when ride sharing transportation services such as Uber or Lyft are involved in an accident, insurance coverage often becomes a major issue. Based on the complexities of insurance coverage, as seen by the above discussion, if you have been injured as a result of an accident involving a ride sharing transportation service vehicle, whether as a passenger in that vehicle or another vehicle, as another driver, or as pedestrian, it is important to hire a law firm with experience in this type of litigation.
If you are in need of legal assistance, call Jaroslawicz & Jaros at , toll free at 800-269-2780, or you can submit an online questionnaire. The initial consultation is always free of charge, and if we agree to handle your case, we will work on a contingency fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary recovery. You can also email Abraham Jaros at [email protected], or call him on his cellphone at 917-842-9544.
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