Ridesharing Accidents In Louisiana

Ridesharing Accidents In Louisiana 

Back in the day, public transportation allowed Louisiana residents to get from place to place without owning a car. But all across the Pelican State, commuters have adopted a new and affordable way to get around their cities. Rideshare companies allow you to travel without driving or sharing space with others.

Ridesharing has become a popular travel mode by using apps to connect drivers with passengers. 

You can reserve a ride, pay, and manage your trips from your mobile device.

Companies like Uber and Lyft have replaced taxis as Louisiana’s primary mode of private transportation. Uber and Lyft are ‘ridesharing services’. Many refer to them as Transportation Network Companies (TNC) or Ride-hailing services. 

However, as Uber and Lyft vehicles on Louisiana roads increased, accidents involving ridesharing companies’ drivers also rose. If an Uber or Lyft driver hit you while you were driving, riding, or walking, or if you were a passenger in a ridesharing vehicle involved in an accident, you should immediately seek help from an experienced Louisiana Uber and Lyft accident lawyer.

What are Rideshare or TNC Apps?

Rideshare is an online service connecting drivers with passengers who require transportation. Unlike a taxi service, the drivers are freelance employees using their cars.

Passengers use rideshare company apps to book rides, get updates on the driver’s location, and pay.

Once the passenger enters their current location and destination, the apps use their phone’s location to find the closest driver to pick them up. The driver will have all that information via the app.

Ways in Which You Could Be Involved in A Ridesharing Accident 

There are multiple ways you may be involved in a rideshare-related accident. The most common of them are:

· You could be a passenger in a ridesharing vehicle.

· You could be the driver or passenger in a car that a ridesharing vehicle collides with.

· You could be a motorcyclist, bicyclist, pedestrian, or a bystander hit by a ridesharing car. 

Common Causes Of Accidents Involving Ridesharing Vehicles

Although Louisiana government agencies and ridesharing companies work together to ensure road, vehicle, driver, and passenger safety, the number of accidents involving these ridesharing drivers continues to rise. Some significant factors that contribute to these accidents are:-

· Driver errors include speeding, distracted driving, failure to yield the right of way, drunk driving, and failure to keep in the proper lane.

· Ridesharing companies contract unfit drivers and fail to train and supervise their contracted drivers.

· Rideshare companies fail to inspect and maintain vehicles regularly.

· In pursuing higher profits, ridesharing companies allow drivers to work excessive driving hours.

· Failure of the state to keep roads properly maintained.

Ridesharing Companies’ Terms Of Service

The most significant single factor affecting personal injury lawsuits by passengers and drivers against ridesharing companies is their terms of service. To use their services, passengers agree to these companies’ terms of service, a contract between the company and the passengers.

Two significant provisions in the terms of service state ridesharing companies will resolve any legal disagreement with passengers or drivers. The first provision concerns how and where legal action can take place. Any legal action against rideshare companies must take place through arbitration. Plaintiffs have no right to a trial.

The second provision restricts plaintiffs from bringing class action or any other group legal action against ridesharing companies. Aggrieved rideshare passengers must initiate action against these companies individually, not collectively.

How Insurance Policies Work For Ridesharing Drivers? 

A driver’s auto policy stands suspended when their TNC app is on. The TNCs provide coverage only for the time between accepting the passenger and dropping off the passenger (before taking a passenger, some TNCs may provide limited liability coverage only). No passenger means no coverage for the driver’s vehicle and any damages or injuries they may sustain. 

Unless specifically chosen as an option, insurance company’s auto policies exclude coverage for incidents when a personal vehicle transports paying passengers, such as during ridesharing. Many insurance companies still need to offer insurance coverage to drivers since ridesharing is a commercial activity to generate income.

Ridesharing companies consider “three periods” while determining eligibility for coverages. Whether a victim receives insurance coverage depends on when the accident took place, as detailed below:

First Period

This period begins when the driver turns the app on and awaits ride requests. In this period, drivers receive limited liability coverage ($50,000 per person/ $100,000 total/ $25,000 property damage). For all other types of coverage, drivers must have their insurance.

Second Period

Period two begins when the driver goes to pick up a passenger. Uber and Lyft provide handsome coverages in this period with up to one million dollars of liability coverage and full coverage for vehicle damages. Uber and Lyft demand proof that a driver was on course to pick up a passenger when the accident occurred. If the driver fails to provide sufficient evidence, the rideshare company can claim the driver was in period one.

Period Three

This period is active when a passenger is in the vehicle and the most manageable period for a lawyer to prove. The presence of a passenger makes insurance claims of both the passenger and the driver almost undeniable. In such cases, attorneys can negotiate fair settlement terms without much resistance. Coverages are similar to those in period two.

Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers: Fearless Louisiana Lawyers Who Challenge Corporate and Political Power Successfully

When an accident victim in Louisiana attempts to sue a ridesharing company for a contracted driver’s careless, reckless, and negligent behavior, things tend to get complicated and murky. 

The controversial arrangement between TNCs and their drivers helps these companies escape a large portion of responsibility and legal liability. If you suffer injuries in an accident involving a rideshare vehicle, as a driver, a passenger, or a pedestrian, who is liable to compensate you depends on the driver’s status at the time of the accident.

An experienced car accident lawyer at Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers can help victims determine liability and the value of their claims. 

Many lawyers get overwhelmed at the prospect of battling billion-dollar ridesharing companies that insurance companies and lawmakers back. To neutralize such entities in a court of law, you must bring in a lawyer who will go in all guns blazing. Louisiana personal injury lawyer Bart Bernard possesses the skill, expertise, and calculated assertiveness to lock horns with liability-evading ridesharing companies and their representatives to secure maximum compensation through verdicts and settlements for injuries in accidents caused by ridesharing drivers.  If you or your loved one has suffered injuries due to the carelessness or negligence of a ridesharing driver in Louisiana, you deserve fair and just compensation for the injuries and other damages. Call an experienced lawyer at our Louisiana personal injury firm for a free case evaluation immediately.



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