What To Do If Injured In A Ride-Sharing Accident - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers
  • Thursday, 14 March 2019

What To Do If Injured In A Ride-Sharing Accident

#AskCoryRubin

The popularity of Uber, Lyft and other companies known as ride-hailing or ride-sharing services has exploded throughout Ontario. Toronto, for instance, last year reported that almost 70,000 drivers had signed up to drive for both Uber and Lyft. This number does not include drivers registered with other ride-hailing companies operating within the city.  The convenience of using an app on your smartphone to summon a vehicle to your location raises questions about liability and the steps to take following an accident involving a ride-hailing vehicle resulting in personal injuries.

What is a ride-sharing service?

Ride-sharing services make use of an application on a smartphone or similar device to connect passengers in need of a ride with drivers willing to provide them with pick them up and bring them to their desired destination. Each ride-sharing company has its own app, so a driver registered with Lyft would have access only to passengers using the Lyft app. Drivers wishing to have access to passengers using apps for Uber and other ride-sharing companies must register and be approved by those companies.

Legal issues arise in connection with ride-sharing in part because most drivers use their personal vehicles to pick up passengers through the app. A driver’s personal insurance policy might not provide coverage in the event of an accident if the insured vehicle is being used to pick up passengers through a ride-sharing service.

Insurance coverage and ride-sharing

Ride-sharing companies operating in Ontario provide insurance coverage to their drivers, but the coverage varies depending upon the driver’s use of the particular company’s app. Until a driver logs in to the ride-sharing service app, the vehicle is covered by the driver’s personal auto insurance policy and not by a policy offered through Uber, Lyft or other ride-sharing companies.

When a driver logs in to the ride-sharing app to wait for a passenger request for a ride, the vehicle has $1 million in third-party liability coverage through the ride-sharing company. Once the driver accepts a passenger request for transportation the coverage increases to $2 million and remains at that level until the service is completed and the passenger exits the vehicle.

Making a claim for compensation following a ride-sharing accident

Making a claim for damages you suffer as a result of a collision with a vehicle being operated as a ride-sharing service presents a challenge in identifying the insurance carrier providing coverage. Drivers could be logged on to multiple ride-sharing service apps at the same time, so you should speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer for advice and guidance in determining which insurance policy applies to your accident.

Whether you are a passenger in a ride-sharing vehicle or the occupant of a vehicle in a collision caused by a ride-sharing service driver, you need to obtain as much information about the accident as possible, including:

  • Identifying information for each vehicle.
  • Names and contact information for all drivers and passengers involved in the accident.
  • Date, time, location and a brief description of the accident.
  • Names and contact information of any witnesses to the accident.
  • Name and contact information of all insurance companies.

If you have been injured, obtaining legal representation is essential to preserve your right to be compensated for your injuries. A lawyer review of the facts and circumstances of an accident helps identify the parties and insurance carriers to whom a claim for compensation should be made on your behalf.

Ontario personal injury lawyer

The personal injury lawyers at Diamond and Diamond have years of experience successfully handling claims for compensation on behalf of people injured through the negligence of other parties. They handle notification of insurance companies, including companies issuing policies through ride-sharing services. Learn more about your right to recover compensation by speaking with one of our lawyers. Call the Diamond and Diamond 24/7 injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit our website to speak to someone now. We have offices located throughout Ontario offering free consultations and case evaluations to injury victims and their families.

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