Can I Sue Lyft After an Accident?

March 20, 2024 | By Francis Firm Injury Attorneys
Can I Sue Lyft After an Accident?

Hailing a Lyft is as simple as making a few clicks on the app and hopping into a convenient ride. But after an accident, things get complicated, especially if you or a loved one suffered injuries in a rideshare accident. Suddenly, you're facing medical bills, lost earnings, and the emotional toll of recovering from an unexpected crash. You might wonder: Can I sue Lyft after an accident?

The answer, like most legal matters, isn't a simple yes or no. Whether you have a case against Lyft depends on the specific circumstances of your accident. Don't worry, though. The Dallas rideshare accident lawyers at the Francis Firm are here to help you navigate this confusing time and fight for the compensation you deserve.

The Lyft Business Model

When it comes to pursuing compensation for your Lyft accident injuries, it’s a good idea to grasp the basics of Lyft’s business model. Lyft is a rideshare company. It connects riders with drivers through the use of a smartphone app.

Unlike taxi companies, Lyft drivers are not employees of the company. They are independent contractors who use their own vehicles to give rides to customers. This can muddy the waters when it comes to determining who is responsible for paying the medical bills and other damages when a Lyft driver is involved in a car accident and someone is injured.

Who Can You Sue in a Lyft Accident?

In a Lyft accident, liability for the injuries and damages can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the accident. The following parties may potentially be held liable:

Lyft Driver: The Lyft driver is typically the first party to be considered for liability. If the driver's negligence, recklessness, or misconduct contributed to the accident, they may be held personally liable. In most cases, Lyft drivers are required to have their own auto insurance policies, which should cover accidents that occur while they are using their vehicles for rideshare purposes.

Lyft: Lyft may be held liable in certain situations. For example, if Lyft failed to perform proper background checks on their drivers and hired someone with a history of reckless driving or criminal behavior, the company could be held responsible for negligent hiring.

Other Parties: Depending on the circumstances, other parties may also be liable. For example, if the accident was caused by a third-party driver (not the Lyft driver) or a defective auto part, those parties could be held responsible.

What Insurance Coverage Do Lyft Drivers Have?

Lyft provides insurance coverage for its drivers depending on the driver’s status at the time of the accident.

When the Driver’s App is Offline or Turned Off

The driver's own car insurance coverage applies. Texas law requires all drivers to have a certain amount of insurance coverage, listed as 30/60/15 coverage. The amount breaks down as follows:

  • $30,000 in bodily injury insurance per person
  • $60,000 in bodily injury insurance per accident
  • $25,000 in property damage repairs

When the Driver is Online and Available for a Trip

Lyft generally provides insurance coverage if the driver’s personal car insurance doesn’t apply. The coverage Lyft provides includes:

  • $50,000 in bodily injury per person
  • $100,000 in bodily injury per accident
  • $25,000 in property damage per accident

When the Lyft Driver is in Route or On a Trip

Lyft provides the following coverage for their drivers:

  • $1 million in third-party liability
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury and/or first-party injury insurance
  • Contingent comprehensive and collision coverage up to the actual cash value of the car with a $2,500 deductible

What to Do if You are Injured in a Lyft Accident

If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a Lyft accident, it's essential to take the following steps to protect your health, well-being, and legal rights:

  • Ensure Your Safety: First and foremost, prioritize your safety and the safety of others at the accident scene. If you are able, move to a safe location away from traffic.
  • Seek Medical Attention: Your health should be your top priority. If you or anyone else involved in the accident is injured, call 911 or seek immediate medical attention. Even if you believe your injuries are minor, it's crucial to get a medical evaluation, as some injuries may not be immediately apparent.
  • Report the Accident: Contact the police and report the accident. A police report can provide valuable documentation of the incident, which can be crucial for insurance claims and potential legal actions.
  • Gather Information: Collect information from the Lyft driver, including their name, contact information, and insurance details. Also, gather contact information from any witnesses at the scene. Take photos of the accident scene, damage to vehicles, and your injuries, if possible.
  • Report the Accident to Lyft: Report the accident to Lyft through the app or their customer support. Lyft will have procedures in place for handling accidents involving their drivers.
  • Preserve Evidence: Keep all documents related to the accident, including medical records, police reports, and any correspondence with Lyft or insurance companies. This evidence may be crucial for your legal claim.
  • Consult an Attorney: Consider consulting with a personal injury attorney experienced in handling rideshare accident cases. An attorney can assess the details of your case, provide legal guidance, and help you understand your rights and options for pursuing compensation.
  • Notify Your Insurance Company: If you have auto insurance, notify your insurance company about the accident. Even though Lyft provides insurance coverage, your personal insurance may also come into play, especially if the Lyft driver's insurance coverage is insufficient.
  • Avoid Discussing the Accident on Social Media: Be cautious about what you post on social media regarding the accident. Anything you say online could potentially be used against you in a legal proceeding.
  • Document Your Recovery: Keep records of all medical treatments, appointments, and expenses related to your injuries. This documentation will be essential when seeking compensation for medical bills and other damages.
  • Be Cautious with Settlement Offers: If you receive a settlement offer from Lyft or their insurance company, consult with your attorney before accepting or signing anything. They can help ensure that any offer is fair and covers all your damages.

Remember that every Lyft accident case is unique, and the specific steps you need to take may vary depending on the circumstances. Consulting with an attorney early in the process can be highly beneficial in protecting your rights and pursuing the compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages.

Injured in a Lyft Accident? The Francis Firm Can Help

Determining whether you can sue Lyft after an injury accident can be complex and may involve various legal considerations. It's advisable to consult with an attorney who can assess your case and guide you through the legal process, helping you understand your rights and options for pursuing compensation.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a Lyft accident, don't hesitate to seek legal advice to protect your interests and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact the personal injury attorneys at Francis Firm for your free and confidential consultation.