Ralph A. Schwartz, P.C.

Who is liable if you are in a ridesharing accident?

The tourism industry in Nevada has contributed a great deal toward taxis and ridesharing services in the area. Whether you have had a little too much to drink while gambling or decided you feel too tired to walk the rest of the way to your hotel while touring the Strip, chances are you might pull out your phone and summon an Uber or Lyft driver. What happens if you are in a crash when you are with a commercial driver?

The answer largely depends on the circumstances surrounding the accident. Was your Uber driver at fault, or did someone else cause the crash? Were you a passenger or a pedestrian? If you were walking, did the ridesharing operator have a passenger in his or her car?

As with other accidents, you will want to take certain steps to document your case and protect yourself legally, including the following:

  • Contacting law enforcement after the accident
  • Getting the names and contact information of witnesses and drivers
  • Taking pictures of the accident scene and damage to vehicles involved
  • Seeking medical attention for injuries and keeping copies of the records

Additionally, if you were an Uber or Lyft customer during the accident, you will want to keep screenshots of your activity with the app and your receipts, which can provide evidence to insurers and investigators that may help your case. Ridesharing operators are independent contractors, and their liability can differ depending on the circumstances. For example, with both Lyft and Uber, a $1 million insurance policy is in effect when the driver is at fault. The driver's personal insurance policy may apply if you were not a passenger, and the driver was not carrying a passenger at the time of the accident. If another driver was at fault, his or her insurance would generally be the one that applies.

Accidents involving ridesharing companies may be a little more complex, but generally, it is a matter of finding out who was at fault and beginning with that insurance company.

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