Uber accident lawyers in Riverside, California
Uber accidents, Lyft accidents and those involving other rideshare & taxi services are increasing, and it can be difficult to figure out who is responsible for paying for injuries. You have to determine which driver is at fault, and then who actually pays … the other driver, your driver with his insurance, or the insurance of the company that employs him.
If your Uber or rideshare driver is the one who acted negligently, who is responsible for paying? If you’ve been in a taxi or Uber accident in Riverside or anywhere in Southern California, read on for important information about your claim.
If you’re a passenger in a rideshare vehicle, the driver of the vehicle at-fault will be responsible to pay for injuries. Determining who is at fault in a rideshare or taxi is like all other car accidents, because it requires an investigation to determine who acted negligently.
Uber, Lyft & Rideshare Insurance
Independent contractors who work for Uber, Lyft, taxi companies and rideshare companies are sometimes considered employees by the court. In most cases these companies are obligated to provide their drivers with insurance. Uber drivers are covered by Uber when they have a car accident. Taxi drivers have been covered by their employers’ insurance for years. In all these cases though, the employee or driver has to be actively working for the employer (or on the clock) to be covered. Otherwise their private insurance may be responsible for damages. These drivers like all are required by law to have insurance.
Uber contracts with its driver partners under legal arrangements as contractors, and not employees. Since taxation, work hours and overtime benefits may be treated differently by various state jurisdictions, this designation has been controversial. In the United States, the US Department of Labor issued guidelines in July 2015 to deal with, what it considers, “misclassification” of workers. It argues that any “worker who is ‘economically dependent’ on the employer should be treated as an employee. By contrast, a worker must be in business for himself or herself to be an independent contractor.” The guideline is non-binding, but is expected to have some influence in various court cases which may establish new common law around the issue.
In a class action lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California on August 16, 2013 Uber drivers plead that they were employees who had been misclassified as independent contractors and violations of the California Labor Code and demanded that they be given any tips Uber had collected on their behalf and payment of business expenses such as gas and maintenance of their vehicles. The District Judge, Edward M. Chen, ruled in the plaintiffs’ favor with respect to a motion for summary judgement by defendants on March 11, 2015 holding that whether Uber drivers were employees was a disputed fact to be resolved by the jury. On September 1, 2015 Chen certified the class but generally limited it to drivers in California hired before June 2014 (when an opt-out arbitration clause was included in the contract) who had directly contracted with Uber.
Whether you are a driver or passenger in a rideshare vehicle that’s been involved in an accident, it is in your best interest to contact an accident/injury attorney. You need a licensed professional to negotiate on your behalf to maximize any payment made by insurance. First and foremost to assist with determining the true and total damages incurred by the accident.
Call now to get your questions answered in a FREE consultation or to file a claim after you’ve been involved in an accident. We are experienced Uber accident attorneys in Riverside, California, 1-800-HURT-NOW.