What to do when injured in an Uber or Lyft

If you have been hurt in a crash involving an Uber or Lyft vehicle, you might be left feeling upset and confused about the insurance process. You may ask who is responsible for providing you with coverage and compensation? Is the driver an employee of Uber or Lyft? What are the laws surrounding these services?

As these services gain popularity, related crashes and injuries are becoming more common and so are the many questions about what happens when a rider or another driver gets hurt and needs to bring a claim.

In 2016 new insurance products were introduced in Ontario to offer “fleet” coverage for rideshare companies, like Uber, Lyft, ecoRIDES, DriveHER, Facedrive, RideCo, and Uride. Drivers, passengers and vehicle owners in Ontario using the above-noted ridesharing companies are covered from the moment the application is turned on to the moment the passengers exit the vehicle. However, when the application is turned off, the vehicle owner’s personal auto insurance policy governs.

With regards to Lyft, there are generally three phases to their insurance policy. Notably, when the vehicle is being used for personal use, coverage is provided by the driver’s personal insurance policy. Phase 1 of the policy kicks in when the driver accepts a trip on the Lyft application. At this point, the policy offers $1 million Third Party Liability coverage, standard accident benefits, $1,00 deductible for collision and comprehensive coverage. Phase 2 of the policy, which is initiated when the driver is en route to collect a passenger, provides the driver with $2 million Third Party Liability coverage, standard accident benefits, and $1,000 deductible for collision and comprehensive coverage. Similar benefits are provided under the third and final phase, which comes into play the moment the passenger enters the vehicle, is transported to their destination, and exits the vehicle.

Uber’s insurance policy operates almost in the same manner as that of Lyft. Like Lyft, Uber’s insurance policy comes into play the moment drivers make themselves available to accept a ride request, to the moment passengers exit the vehicle.

Ridesharing passengers and third parties will look to their own personal auto insurance, if any, for Statutory Accident Benefits. If the rider is not an insured under another auto insurance policy, the policy for vehicle is responsible for payment of benefits. The rider could have a right to litigate again the at fault driver and/or the Uber or Lyft driver.

If you are involved in a collision as a rider, please ensure to save the driver information, type of vehicle, plate number, etc. in your application. Please also ensure to stay at the scene until the police arrive. If no one calls the police, please ensure that you do. Please take pictures of the damage to both vehicles at the scene. Record witness names and information. Get a copy of the motor vehicle accident report from the police officer. Ensure to get the police officer’s card. Do NOT leave the scene until emergency personnel arrive.

If you or your loved one has been involved in a ridesharing collision, please do not hesitate to call our legal team at JEWELL RADIMISIS JORGE LLPfor a free consultation. We are here to help you!

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