March 25, 2024

Reporting a Rideshare Accident in New Orleans


Involved in a rideshare accident in the New Orleans, LA area?

Ridesharing applications have revolutionized the ways in which we get around today in Louisiana. Ridesharing refers to a vehicle service in which drivers are paired with customers in need of a ride, and the drivers chauffeur their customers in their private vehicles. Ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft have spiked in popularity in the last few years and have rapidly taken over the transportation industry with the ridesharing industry being estimated at nearly $61 billion. For instance, Uber alone has over 3.8 million drivers while Lyft has about 1.4 million drivers in their global network. 

Because of this, it is important to have an experienced New Orleans car accident lawyer with experience handling ridesharing cases to assist you with your claim and assure your rights are protected. We can assist you in filing a claim and reporting a rideshare accident. Contact Cueria Law Firm, LLC today at (504) 525-5211 to schedule a consultation.

Steps to Take After an Uber/Lyft-Involved Accident

The moments following an accident as a passenger in a ridesharing vehicle can be very confusing. However, the following steps can be taken to assure that you, the driver, and other drivers are safe and that the proper information and documentation are collected at the scene. This information can be used by an attorney to support your claim if you are injured in the accident. 

  • First, call emergency services and seek medical attention if you or any of the other drivers are injured. Even if the injuries are not visible, seeking medical attention is the best way to assure there are no head or internal injuries. Be sure to make the physician aware that you were involved in an accident so they can meticulously evaluate you for any potential injuries.
  • Next, Louisiana law requires that accidents be reported to police if there is damage in excess of $500. When speaking with law enforcement, allow the drivers to explain the incident. Police reports will contain important information for your case, and typically officers will assign fault if the accident indicates that a driver was operating their vehicle in violation of the law.
  • Next, you should contact the company. Using the phone application or their website, both Uber and Lyft have options for reporting a rideshare accident to their company. 
  • Next, exchange information with the other drivers and take photographs of the scene. Obtaining photographs and documenting the area surrounding the accident as well as the damage done to the vehicles will help a doctor or your attorney better assess your injuries. Additionally, if any of your injuries are outwardly visible, take photographs of them as well. 
  • Next, check for witnesses. Witnesses can offer valuable reports to help your case. They will provide an unbiased story of how the accident happened. If there are witnesses, collect their information. You can also scan the area for any businesses with surveillance cameras that may have video-recorded the accident. 
  • Lastly, if you see a physician, keep copies of these medical records. It is important to maintain a record of all of your injuries and the treatments you’ve gotten. Continuing all recommended treatment is pertinent to the success of your case in order for your damages to be reasonably calculated. 
Steps to Take After an Uber/Lyft-Involved Accident Description
Call Emergency Services Seek medical attention for injuries, even if not apparent.
Report Accident to Police Mandated by Louisiana law for accidents exceeding $500 in damages.
Contact Rideshare Company Use Uber or Lyft app to report the accident.
Exchange Information Share contact and insurance details with other drivers, document scene and vehicle damage.
Gather Witness Accounts Collect contact info from unbiased witnesses, check for surveillance footage.
Maintain Medical Records Keep medical records for all injuries sustained, follow recommended treatment for accurate damage calculation.

Rideshare Insurance Requirements

Due to the influx of ridesharing users and more drivers on the roads in large cities, it is not uncommon for accidents to occur involving these drivers and their passengers. Due to the fact that drivers are not classified as employees but rather as independent contractors, many of these companies make attempts to avoid liability when an accident occurs.

When a person is injured in an accident as a ridesharing passenger, however, different types of insurance coverage may apply. When you are injured in an accident in Louisiana involving a rideshare driver, you can seek compensation from the rideshare driver’s personal auto insurance policy, the rideshare company’s third-party liability insurance policy, the other driver’s personal auto insurance policy, or from your own policy providing uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.  

However, important to note is that the coverage which is provided by a rideshare company’s third-party liability insurance policy usually depends upon the point the driver is at in completing a ride. For example, Uber’s insurance coverage is as follows:

  • When the driver is offline or the driver application is off: During this time, the driver’s personal insurance coverage applies. 
  • When the driver is available and waiting for a request: During this time, if your personal insurance does not apply, Uber maintains policies covering $50,000 in bodily injury per person, $100,000 in bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 in property damage per accident. 
  • When the driver is en route to pick up or drop off riders: During this time, Uber maintains policies covering $1,000,000 third-party liability, uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury, and contingent comprehensive and collision. This last category includes UM coverage, but La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 45:201.1 permits Transportation Network Companies, such as Uber or Lyft, to waive the underinsured motorist coverage. The same statute shifts the responsibility of acquiring UM coverage for ride-sharing activity under personal insurance policies to transportation network company drivers. 

Determining Liability After a Rideshare Collision in Louisiana

After a rideshare accident in Louisiana involving companies like Lyft or Uber, establishing liability is a crucial step toward seeking justice and compensation. To identify the responsible party, several key pieces of evidence must be meticulously collected and analyzed with the assistance of your attorney

The police report is essential in establishing a strong case. This report documents important details from the accident scene, such as testimonies from drivers, witnesses, and observations by the responding officer, offering an unbiased perspective that can significantly affect your claim’s outcome.

Beyond the police report, your attorney needs to promptly gather more evidence for a thorough evaluation. Accident reconstruction reports, which offer a scientific analysis of how the collision occurred, are crucial for understanding aspects such as speed, trajectory, and impact. These reports can help clarify the sequence of events leading to the crash.

Video evidence from traffic and security cameras near the accident site is also essential. This footage can provide real-time insights, potentially verifying fault or even challenging the statements of involved parties. Given the risk of the footage being erased, it’s vital for your legal representative to request it immediately to ensure its preservation for your case.

By diligently collecting and analyzing all relevant evidence, your attorney can build a robust case to establish liability, guiding you through the legal complexities and assisting you in securing the compensation you deserve following a rideshare accident in Louisiana.

Use Caution When Reporting a Rideshare Accident to the Insurance Company

One tricky aspect of accidents involving rideshare drivers is establishing liability and discussing your claim with an insurance company. If you end up reporting a rideshare accident or contacting the insurance company to make a statement before speaking with an attorney, it is vital that you use caution.

When there are multiple insurance companies involved in an accident, they will attempt to place the blame on the other drivers or their insurance companies. Additionally, they will try to provide as little compensation as possible for your claim.

Hiring an attorney, having access to their knowledge regarding these types of claims, and having them handle these types of communications can help you steer clear of any of these potential issues. 

Contact an Experienced New Orleans Car Accident Lawyer

The car accident attorneys at Cueria Law LLC have valuable experience with these types of claims. If you have been injured in an accident involving a rideshare vehicle – like an Uber or Lyft – it is important to speak with an experienced attorney before speaking with the insurance company. The laws and insurance practices that apply to these situations differ from those of a normal auto accident. Call our experienced and dedicated team of attorneys at the Cueria Law Firm for a free consultation today!

Our firm can assist you in reporting a rideshare accident and researching your case to find out the value of your claim. We can explain all of your options and run through the possible scenarios that may arise from your case. Contact Cueria Law Firm today at (504) 525-5211 for a free consultation on your rideshare accident claim.

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