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Uber / Lyft Rideshare Accidents

Uber/Lyft Rideshare Accidents

Uber/Lyft Rideshare Accidents

California’s two major ride-sharing companies are Uber and Lyft, which are officially referred to as “Transportation Network Companies” or “TNCs.” These companies are regulated by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and the California Public Utilities Code. The code mandates that:

  • Ride-sharing drivers must carry auto insurance with minimum coverage of $1,000,000 while passengers are in the vehicle.
  • Ride-sharing companies must perform background checks on their drivers.

If an individual experiences an accident or crime involving an Uber or Lyft driver, there are several options for recourse, such as:

  • Filing a lawsuit against Uber or Lyft in the event of an accident.
  • Pursuing legal action if they have been the victim of assault or battery by a Lyft or Uber driver or passenger.
  • Seeking damages for sexual assault committed by an Uber or Lyft driver

Furthermore, drivers who sustain injuries while working for a TNC or believe their labor rights have been violated can file a California wage and hour lawsuit against Uber or Lyft. Consumer complaints may also be lodged with the California Public Utilities Commission.

In what ways do ride-sharing services differ from taxi companies? Ride-sharing services, or Transportation Network Companies (TNCs), differ from traditional taxi
and limo companies in various ways:

  • TNCs often have less visible branding and signage.
  • Drivers have more control over their schedules and can choose which rides to accept.
  • TNC drivers typically use their own vehicles and are responsible for maintenance and fuel.
  • Taxi companies must carry commercial insurance that covers them 24/7, while TNCs’ commercial policies only apply when there are passengers in the vehicle or the driver is actively searching for passengers.
  • When TNC drivers are not actively working, their individual car insurance applies, which may only meet the minimum California requirements of $15,000 for injury or death to one person, $30,000 for injury or death to multiple people, and $5,000 for property damage.

If you have questions about Uber/Lyft//Rideshare accident lawsuits in California or would like to discuss your case and legal rights with an experienced attorney, contact The Law Offices of Louis Gabbara today at 760-294-0808



The Insurance Research Council found that:

“Accident victims with a lawyer receive an average of 3.5 times more than those who are unrepresented.”

When injury victims file successful lawsuits or personal injury claims, they may receive compensation for a range of damages including medical bills and expenses, lost wages, lost earning capacity, property damage, and pain and suffering.

In California, liability for an accident involving a ridesharing driver depends on three factors: who caused the accident, whether the injured person was a passenger of the service at the time, and whether the driver was using the app to look for passengers or driving a passenger referred by a TNC. If the driver is at fault while driving on their own time, they and their insurer are liable. However, once a driver logs onto the ride-sharing app, the ride-sharing company and its commercial insurer also assume liability. Passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians may be able to seek damages from both the driver and the ride-sharing company.

At The Law Offices of Louis Gabbara, we have witnessed a wide range of traffic accidents involving rideshare drivers. Some examples include pedestrians unexpectedly walking in front of Uber drivers, or chaotic accidents involving multiple Uber or Lyft drivers, making it difficult to establish liability.

However, rideshare injury cases can be generally categorized into several types, including accidents between:

  • Uber vs. Uber, Uber vs. Lyft, and other similar rideshare vehicles
  • Rideshare vehicles and pedestrians
  • Rideshare vehicles and bicycles
  • Rideshare vehicles and scooters
  • Rideshare vehicles and motorcycles
  • Rideshare vehicles and cars, SUVs, and trucks
  • Rideshare vehicles and delivery drivers or commercial vehicles
  • Accidents caused by drunk or drugged driving
  • Accidents caused by distracted driving
  • Accidents involving autonomous or “driverless” cars
  • Wrongful deaths resulting from traffic accidents

After a rideshare accident, injured drivers can often feel neglected by authorities and their employers. However, it is important not to lose hope. You can contact a lawyer for a consultation and follow the below tips:

  1. Obtain a copy of the police report immediately to help clear up liability and prove that you were injured. Even if the other party does not want to involve the police, report the accident to the authorities without delay.
  2. Report the accident to your rideshare company and consult with your lawyer to ensure you are protecting your rights from the start. Beware that anything you say or type may become evidence.
  3. Be careful about sharing photos or videos online and avoid discussing the accident on social media. Your lawyer can help you decide how to handle these communications and communicate with the other driver on your behalf.
  4. Collect all the necessary information from the other driver, including their name, phone number, insurance information, and physical address. This includes their license plate, insurance card, and license. Provide as much information as possible to your lawyer.
  5. Seek medical attention for your injuries and follow your doctors’ orders. Consistency in treatment, including showing proof of treatment, is key in the period after a rideshare accident. Keep a record of all medical bills and expenses incurred as a result of the accident, as insurance companies will need to see this proof before paying


The question of liability is crucial when it comes to determining whether Uber will pay for your injuries resulting from an accident. If you are found to be responsible for the accident, Uber is likely to resist paying. Additionally, insurance companies may also refuse to pay, as coverage isn’t always guaranteed and depends on the details of the partner policy you selected. It’s important to report any injuries to Uber using their reporting system if you want to keep your job as an Uber driver, even if the accident was your fault. Failing to report the injury breaches the terms and conditions for drivers and could lead to insurance companies denying your claim. If a rideshare driver is at fault for an accident during the active driving period, Uber typically only covers third-party liability, which covers injuries to other people involved in the accident but not the driver. However, Uber offers optional injury protection at a cost of $.0375 per mile while on a covered trip. This coverage also extends to online-but-waiting periods experienced during daily driving. While it’s not explicitly stated, it can be assumed that this coverage is for all accidents,
regardless of fault. The premium for this coverage is automatically deducted from a driver’s earnings

Uber’s optional injury protection includes:

Uber’s optional injury protection plan offers coverage for various situations, including accident medical expenses up to a maximum of $1,000,000 without any deductible or copay, temporary and continuous total disability up to a maximum of $500 per week, accidental death up to a maximum of $50,000, survivor benefits up to a maximum of $150,000, and accidental dismemberment up to a maximum of $200,000.

However, if an Uber driver is at fault for an accident while driving for the company, it raises several related issues that require legal guidance. For instance, would Uber penalize the driver, and would it affect their driver rating or account status? According to discussions among Uber drivers on Reddit, Uber may deactivate the driver’s account and ask for proof that the vehicle is still drivable enough to carry passengers. This aligns with Uber’s accident reporting page on its website.

How Can The Law Offices of Louis Gabbara Help Drivers or Passengers Injured in Rideshare Accidents?

The Law Offices of Louis Gabbara can handle the complicated legal issues involved in your rideshare accident claim so that you can put all of your focus and energy on recovering from your injuries. With a trustworthy, experienced rideshare accident attorney by your side, there is no reason to worry and stress about your situation.

Here’s how the process works. During your initial consultation, we’ll discuss everything that is going to occur over the following weeks and months. This includes the potential outcome that you can expect from your rideshare accident case, as well as things that you might be able to do to strengthen your claim. You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions all along the way. Next, we’ll investigate the crash itself, gathering the valuable evidence you will need for your case so that you will have the best possible chance of succeeding and getting the settlement you deserve. We’re very experienced at creating a strong, solid case for compensation in rideshare accident cases.

Part of the process is creating a demand letter that tells the other side what you’re requesting and why you should receive it. There will be a period where we go back and forth with the other side, negotiating carefully to get you the best possible outcome. In rideshare cases, these negotiations usually go pretty smoothly when you have a lawyer involved.

Eventually, we will either come to a settlement or the other side will insist on going to court. Most of the time, rideshare accident cases can be resolved without going to court. However, sometimes the other person is extremely stubborn or the insurance company thinks a judge or jury will be sympathetic to them for some reason.

Either way, your rideshare accident lawyer from The Law Offices of Louis Gabbara will be there to help you maximize the value of your claim. Hiring a personal injury lawyer is always going to help you versus trying to navigate and manage the other side’s lawyers on your own. Plus, you don’t pay us until your case is resolved.

If you have questions about Uber/Lyft//Rideshare accident lawsuits in California or would like to discuss your case and legal rights with an experienced attorney, contact The Law Offices of Louis Gabbara today at 760-294-0808

Our law firm operates on a contingency fee basis, which means we only get paid if we win your case. Read our testimonials to learn more about our years of experience securing fair settlements. Schedule an initial consultation with our attorneys for legal advice.

Our local law offices in Escondido serves Encinitas, Vista, Oceanside, Murrietta, Temecula, Fallbrook, Camp Pendleton, the Greater San Diego vicinity, and all throughout California.