Miami Uber Car Accident Injury Lawyers
If you or a loved one were involved in a car accident involving an uber or lyft vehicle, contact the accident injury attorneys at Suarez & Montero and ask about receiving a free consultation so that we can see how we can help you with your uber accident claim. Our skilled rideshare accident lawyers have the experience necessary to handle all aspects of your rideshare case to make sure you secure the compensation that you deserve.
Uber Car Accidents and Motor Vehicle Collisions in Miami
The “sharing economy” or the “on-demand economy” describes the economic system that uses online platforms to connect workers and sellers with clients and consumers, primarily through smartphone applications. The most widely recognized sharing economy companies are the “ride share” companies, such as Uber and Lyft. For many years, the only alternative form of private transportation in Miami were either taxi cabs or limousines. Ride sharing companies have become a basic part of our everyday lives in Miami. This is because ride sharing companies provide a valuable service for those who have transportation needs.
In fact, although sharing economy companies are relatively new, the global market for sharing economy companies is growing at an extremely fast rate. For instance, the number of Uber drivers doubled every six months between 2013 and 2015. And in 2013, the global sharing economy market was valued at $26 billion, and it is expected to grow to $110 billion in the near future. While the various app-based rideshare services didn’t even exist a few years ago, today Uber, Lyft, Sidecar, are widely used and seen as a “safe” form of getting around South Florida. As ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft continue to grow, it has presented lawmakers and lawyers representing injured victims with new challenges.
For example, many ridesharing drivers are not screened before joining the platform and others are not experienced drivers. While it is clear that companies like Uber and Lyft have taken over and are changing the landscape for private transportation, that does not mean that there are no drawbacks. Being that thousands of Uber and Lyft vehicles are on the road daily in South Florida, the probability of car accidents occurring involving a rideshare car is highly likely.
State Laws for Uber and other Rideshare Companies
The regulation of ridesharing companies has been a hotly contested subject, not only in Florida, but also throughout the United States and the world. The arrival of TNCs in Florida created a political storm for local politicians and regulators. Uber, the largest of the TNCs, and its close rival, Lyft, arrived first in Miami, Florida around 2014. When they arrived, there were no transportation or for-hire regulations that fit the operating model they had in place. As a result, in 2017, Florida enacted legislation to legalize and regulate ridesharing companies, such as Uber and Lyft.
Florida’s ridesharing laws established a uniform set of regulations for ridesharing across the entire state. The key issues addressed in the law include the classification of drivers as independent contractors and minimum insurance requirements. Notably, the law does not require ridesharing companies or their drivers to obtain an initial or annual permit fee before beginning to operate; lawmakers only mandated a bi-annual submission of a compliance report prepared by an independent auditor
What Insurance is Available to Miami Uber Accident Injury Victims?
Drivers for rideshare companies, such as Uber and Lyft, are required by Florida law to have insurance coverage whenever the rideshare app is on. Rideshare drivers in Florida must have their own auto insurance policies, since there are times where they will be driving while not logged in to the ridesharing app. At a minimum, drivers need $10,000 of personal injury protection (PIP) coverage and $10,000 of property damage liability coverage to meet Florida’s auto insurance requirements. This requirement can be fulfilled with either personal or commercial auto insurance, but under a driver’s personal auto insurance policy, the insurer can deny coverage during the time the rideshare app is on.
On the other hand, commercial insurance is more limited in coverage of personal use of vehicles for hire, and it’s typically more expensive than purchasing both personal auto insurance and rideshare insurance policies. Either way, once the app is on, Florida requires rideshare drivers to carry higher limits of insurance. This mandate can be met by the driver, but the TNC, such as Uber or Lyft, is required to provide coverage for drivers with insufficient policy limits. In addition to the state’s personal auto insurance requirements, Florida law mandates that rideshare drivers are covered as follows while their app is on:
- When the rideshare, app is on but there are no passengers assigned, the ridesharing company insurance policy provides at least $50k of bodily injury coverage per person, $100k of bodily injury coverage per accident, and $25k of property damage liability coverage per accident.
- Once a passenger is assigned, the ride share’s third-party liability insurance policy kicks in to provide at least $1 million in coverage for bodily injury and property damage.
Rideshare insurance in Florida for Uber and Lyft drivers, as well as those who drive for other ridesharing networks works similarly to the way it works in other states. If a driver purchases a rideshare insurance policy or adds a rideshare endorsement to their personal auto insurance policy, there are four stages during which coverage can differ. The first stage is when a driver’s personal auto insurance covers them while they’re driving and the app is off, as this is considered standard personal usage. The next stage While the rideshare app is on and the driver is waiting to be paired with a passenger, their personal rideshare insurance would provide coverage. A limited amount of liability coverage is also provided by the rideshare company, such as Uber or Lyft.
The rideshare company’s auto insurance is typically in force while a driver has been paired with a passenger and is on their way to pick up the person. During this time, some personal rideshare insurance policies extend coverage as well. Once a passenger is in the car, the rideshare company’s commercial auto insurance is in force. The primary difference in Florida is that there is no period of time during which a driver might not have insurance coverage, since the law requires all TNCs to have a policy that can cover all periods when the app is on.
However, not every rideshare company has the same commercial insurance policy, and different coverage limits can be extended during different periods.
Compensation Available to Miami Uber Car Accident Victims
The Compensation that is available after a uber car accident depends on the facts and circumstances of your particular case. The lawyers at Suarez & Montero will make sure to investigate your uber accident to ensure that we obtain all of the information necessary to obtain proper compensation for your injuries. Below we have provided a breakdown of some of the potential areas where we may be able to obtain compensation for your injuries after a uber car accident:
Your Auto Insurance Carrier:
We can make a claim for any available Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage to pay for your medical expenses and damage to your vehicle. If there is another driver involved in the uber accident who does not have auto insurance coverage, our firm can go after benefits under an uninsured/underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage if you opted to purchase the coverage at the inception of the auto policy period. Just to offer some clarification on PIP, this coverage is mandatory under Florida law and provides coverage for 80% of all reasonable, related and necessary medical expenses as well as 60% of lost wages stemming from an automobile accident occurring during the policy period. Household services are also generally covered at 100%. P.I.P. further provides a death benefit of $5,000 (which is now above and beyond the total available $10,000 medical and wage loss benefits). The policy is primary above other insurance and provides coverage to a limit of $10,000 ($15,000 in the event of a death claim).
Rideshare Auto Insurance Provider:
If your damages are higher than expected or exceed the PIP limits, our firm can file a claim for you with the uber driver’s auto insurance company to attempt to obtain additional benefits to compensate you for your injuries.
Third Parties Responsible for the Accident:
If an accident was partially caused by the negligence of a third party such as the government or a company, our firm can proceed against them as well to obtain additional benefits for your injuries.
If your auto accident happened while you were working, you can be compensated by your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance company.
Health Insurance Provider:
Sometimes health insurers are liable for some of the medical expenses that pile up after sustaining an injury in a car accident. Our firm can reach out to your health insurance company and make sure that they contribute for their portion of your damages. Of course, this all depends on the facts and circumstances that apply to your particular case.
Know Your Rights!
Even a minor accident can have far-reaching implications for your health, employment and long-term well-being. Knowing what to do after a rideshare accident can help you protect your rights and ensure you get the best possible outcome in your case! Don’t agree to an insurance settlement immediately after filing your insurance claim! If someone from the insurance company contacts you on behalf of the organization or individual that injured you, be very wary of speaking to them. Also, keep in mind that insurance companies are known for trying to extend injured car accident victims extremely low settlement offers before the extent of their injuries is truly known.
Why Hire Us to be Your Uber Car Accident Lawyers in Miami?
If you or a loved one were injured in a rideshare accident in South Florida, it is important for you to understand that you should speak to an attorney as soon as you can; time is often a factor in personal injury cases. Our skilled Uber and Lyft accident attorneys routinely leverage their considerable experience into obtaining significant settlements from insurance companies who are known for being reluctant to pay out on claims. Additionally, our firm genuinely cares about our clients. When they come to us for assistance with any legal matter, we provide the utmost personal attention to make sure that we achieve the best possible outcome.
Call an Experienced Miami Uber Accident Injury Lawyer
There is no substitute for quality legal advice after being involved in a car accident. The car accident attorneys at Suarez and Montero would love to have an opportunity to clarify the law in Florida and assist you in presenting a strong claim against the at fault party. Every firm is distinctive and auto accident victims have needs that are also distinct. needs are different. The Florida auto accident attorneys at Suarez & Montero encourage you to reach out so that we can explain more about the different ways that our law firm and attorneys can provide legal assistance and direction after an auto accident. Make an appointment with us at one of our many locations. Remember, we work on a contingency basis so you will owe us nothing If we are unable to obtain successful results for your case.
The Law Offices of Suarez & Montero Car Accident Attorneys represents accident victims injured in various types of accidents including:
Frequently Asked Questions
A ridesharing company is an entity that operates in Florida using a digital network to connect riders and drivers for prearranged drives. Additionally, ridesharing companies or their drivers are not considered to be common carriers.
No. Under Florida law, ridesharing companies are not deemed to own, control, operate, direct, or manage the vehicles or drivers that connect to its digital network, except where agreed to by written contract.
Under Florida law, a digital network like the one used by ridesharing services like uber and lyft is any online-enabled technology application service, website, or system offered or used by a transportation network company which enables the prearrangement of rides with transportation network company drivers. A “prearranged ride” is the provision of transportation by a driver to a rider, beginning when a driver accepts a ride requested by a rider through a digital network controlled by a ridesharing company, continuing while the driver transports the rider, and ending when the last rider exits from and is no longer occupying the driver’s vehicle.
A driver is an individual who receives connections to potential riders and related services from a ridesharing network and in return for compensation, uses a vehicle to offer or provide a prearranged ride to a rider upon connection through said digital network.
Rideshare requirements for vehicles are consistent across the state of Florida. The car must have at least four doors, must have between five and eight seats, have a valid license plate, and should be listed on a personal insurance policy or rideshare insurance policy issued in Florida. The car’s model year needs to be 2002 or newer, unless you’re driving in Miami, Orlando, Bradenton, Jacksonville, Naples, Port Charlotte, Sarasota or Tampa. In these cities, your car’s model year must be 2006 or newer. Uber’s car requirements in Florida are determined by city, but the actual requirements are primarily based on the services offered.