We all regularly use Uber or Lyft to provide safe and reliable transportation in our daily lives. The following post focuses on the steps you should take if you are in a vehicle crash with an Uber or Lyft as a passenger, or if an Uber or Lyft crashes into your vehicle.
Call the Police to Make a Report
Police reports are one of the most useful documents in a motor vehicle accident case. They contain statements from parties and possible witness information, all the information for both drivers, and a diagram of the accident. Police reports are also seen as objective sources. Often when the other driver doesn’t cooperate with their insurance or tells their insurance the accident happened in a different way, this police report is the only way to confirm how the accident happened. While police response times differ from city to city, it is always worth the time to wait for them to come make a report. It doesn't matter if the Uber or Lyft driver is in a hurry, needs to go to the next ride/passenger, or requests you just exchange information, insist on the Uber or Lyft driver obtaining a police report related to the collision.
Get the Other Driver’s Information
If you are a passenger in the Uber or Lyft, make sure you get the other driver’s information, such as a picture of their driver's license and proof of insurance. If they don’t have a license or proof of insurance, or will not show them to you, take a picture of their license plate. Even if the other driver refuses to show you their license or proof of insurance, their license plate can be used to search for insurance information.
Take Pictures of Both Vehicles
While you are taking photographs of the other driver’s license plate, take pictures of the physical damage to their car as well. Pictures of physical damage can be used to help reconstruct an accident later on and are always useful to illustrate the severity of the collision. Property damage claims can often be handled relatively quickly, and you may not get another chance to take pictures of their vehicle or your own before the damage is repaired.
Consider Obtaining Legal Counsel Before Talking to Their Insurance Company
If you’ve done all of the above, you should have all the information you need to call the insurance company covering the Uber or Lyft vehicle and/or the other driver, and then start your claim. However, before you speak to an insurance adjuster, consider calling a legal professional. For starters, whether the insurance company is covering the Uber or Lyft vehicle or another driver, they are going to record your call. It can be used against you later in the claims process and/or in litigation. Insurance companies don’t make a profit by paying out the full value on injury claims. Their adjuster is going to try and do whatever they can to settle your claim for as little money as possible. They may try to ask you leading questions that can be used against you later on, which will be recorded.
The attorneys at Scott Vicknair, LLC have experience dealing with vehicle collisions that involve Uber and Lyft vehicles. If you are hurt in a collision involving an Uber or Lyft vehicle, call us before you speak to the insurance company. Leave the hard work to us.