Is there really any chance this guy can go after their Uber driver? The answer is…not really. LegalRideshare, the only law firm dedicated to accidents like these, explains why.
It’s Saturday, just before midnight. Surge prices are booming.
Ping! The driver connects with a passenger a few blocks away.
Four minutes and seven blocks later, the Uber driver is sitting at a red light. All of a sudden, BOOM! A heavy impact jolts everyone forward as another car rear ends the Uber.
The passenger in the back snaps into it, holds his neck and screams, “Look what you did! You’re going to pay for this!”
So, the question becomes, what’s the personal liability here? Is there really any chance this guy can go after their Uber driver? The answer is…not really. LegalRideshare, the only law firm dedicated to accidents like these, explains why.
The Uber driver is clearly not at fault for this crash. They were stopped at a red light when another driver rear-ended them. As such, the at-fault driver’s insurance is “primary.” That means his insurance company will have to pay first for any claims made in relation to the crash (up to the policy limits). The Uber driver's insurance is “secondary.” It comes into play only if the injured passenger’s damages (medical bills, pain and suffering, etc.) exceed the at-fault driver’s policy limits.
Once a Uber driver accepts a fare and has a passenger in their car, it's considered “period three” and covered by Uber/Lyft’s insurance. Therefore, even if the at-fault driver has little (or no) coverage, the rideshare company’s policy will take over. With coverage up to $1,000,000, there is plenty of insurance for almost any scenario.
Let’s switch up the facts. The Uber driver caused the crash and rear-ended another driver. The passenger is hurt and threatens to sue.
In actuality, not much changes. Because the Uber driver is the at-fault driver, their insurance is “primary.” They're still in period three, meaning Uber/Lyft’s company takes over. That insurance will cover damages up to its limits (again, $1M). As such, there’s plenty of coverage and the driver need not worry about their assets in most scenarios.
Uber drivers should be aware that you might be named as a defendant if the injured passenger files a lawsuit. That does not necessarily mean their personal assets are at risk. The insurance company, while not a party to the lawsuit, still has an obligation to defend that driver and protect their interests.
The bottom line: When you’re cruising with a passenger, there is plenty of insurance to protect your personal assets. After a crash, stay calm, call the police to investigate and report the incident to Uber/Lyft.