What Happens if Your Uber Is in an Accident?
More hours for rideshare drivers means higher chances of getting into a crash. In case you do suffer an accident or sustain injuries in an Uber accident, it is best to be prepared and informed beforehand. Questions you should have answers to on your fingertips as an Uber driver are:
- What happens when I get into an Uber accident?
- What car insurance policies does Uber have for its partners?
- What are the main exclusions to Uber insurance policies?
Here is everything you need to know about Uber accidents and how they affect drivers.
What Happens to an Uber Driver After an Accident?
When you have an accident when driving for Uber, your vehicle could be classified as a “commercial vehicle” by your auto insurance policy. Because of this, you should never drive an Uber vehicle without rideshare insurance.
Because there is more than one insurance carrier involved in a ridesharing accident, it can be confusing to know which of different insurance providers is responsible compensating for your damages and bodily injuries. Familiarizing yourself with Uber’s driver periods will make things easier for you.
Uber Driver Periods
Uber offers rideshare insurance for its drivers in the form of commercial insurance. However, this does not take effect as soon as the driver turns the app on. The moment a driver turns the application on, the driver’s time is divided into three periods. Based on this, Uber determines when their insurance applies, depending on the period in which the crash happened.
The First Period
In the first period, the Uber application is turned on as the driver waits for customer requests. Sadly, Uber’s rideshare policy does not apply for accidents that happen before a driver agrees to carry a passenger. The reason behind this is Uber considers their drivers as partners, not employees. As partners, drivers are required to take responsibility for everything that happens when not on duty.
Uber considers drivers to be “on the clock” when a rider requests a ride. Should you suffer an accident when not on the clock, you can then seek compensation from your commercial car insurance policy or your personal auto insurance. Your health insurance cover may also step in should you sustain personal injuries.
The Second Period
The second period is when an Uber driver is headed to pick up a customer. The moment an Uber driver accepts a ride request, he or she is usually placed in “on duty” status and Uber coverage begins. However, there are still complications with this. If the driver gets into an accident prior to picking up the customer, it implies that the customer would need to cancel that ride. This adds an additional layer of complexity to the case because Uber and their insurance carriers may argue that the accident happened after the cancellation, not before. Pursuing a claim in such a case would be difficult without an expert Uber accident lawyer on your side.
The Third Period
The third period is when an Uber passenger is in your vehicle. Claiming compensation from Uber at this stage is not as complex as it is in the second period. Since you are carrying an Uber passenger in your car, Uber considers you as an “on duty” driver and generally covers all that happens along the way.
Make Sure You Document the Accident
Keep in mind that the second period makes the claim process more complex. As a result, you should gather as much evidence on the accident and document it as soon as the accident happens. This could involve taking screenshots on your phone to prove that your accident preceded cancellation by the passenger. In fact, regardless of the period an accident occurs in, Uber requires drivers to document an incident thoroughly.
Talk to witnesses, jot down their contact details, and record their statements. Take photos of the scene, and obtaining the police report on the accident would be helpful as well. Doing so will not only enhance the success of your claim but also will help to file for a better compensation package.
Contact Your Personal Insurance
If an accident only leads to the damage of your vehicle, you should contact your auto insurance company for compensation. However, if other parties are also involved, you might need to seek compensation from the other driver’s insurers. Both of these insurance carriers should be presented with accident details so that they can start investigations and determine fault.
Tell Uber About the Accident
Contacting Uber is one of the most important steps to take after an accident. Uber will want to know everything about the accident, including whether injuries were sustained by anyone and whether or not they need to send another car for picking up their customers. Keep in mind that, when this happens, Uber is likely to suspend you from their platform for some time while they investigate the case.
Talk to an Uber Accident Lawyer About Your Case
Making an Uber claim on your own can be difficult. Our team of ridesharing accident experts is here to help you every step of the way. We work to protect the rights and well-being of our customers, so call us today at 713-677-2179 for a no-obligation discussion and evaluation of your case. Call now.
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