Being injured in a car accident is an incredibly frightening experience. Seeking compensation in the aftermath of the crash can be daunting, and the process becomes even more stressful when the other vehicle involved in the crash was an Uber, Lyft, or another type of rideshare.
At Mama Justice, we provide dedicated legal guidance to victims of a serious accidents, including rideshare accidents, in and around Jackson. Led by our founding attorney, Missy Wigginton, AKA Mama Justice, we approach each case with personalized attention and care. We can help you understand your legal rights and options after an Uber or Lyft accident and are prepared to fight for the justice and recovery you are owed.
Because Mississippi follows a traditional fault-based system for car accident claims, you will need to prove that someone else was at least partly at fault for the accident to file a claim. Under the state’s pure comparative negligence rule, you don’t have to prove that the other driver was entirely at fault, just that they shared some of the blame (if you are found partly at fault, however, your total recovery will be reduced).
Once you have established fault, you can typically bring a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company. With rideshare accidents, however, the insurance company will likely deny the claim. This is because most auto insurance policies do not cover accidents that occur while the driver is operating his or her vehicle in a commercial capacity. In other words, the fact that the rideshare driver was working for Uber or Lyft at the time of the crash will most likely mean that they were not technically covered by their private auto insurance policy.
When this happens, Uber or Lyft will typically step in and provide coverage. These rideshare companies recognize that their drivers are not covered by their own insurance policies while operating for their respective rideshare employers and, therefore, offer supplementary insurance coverage. This coverage is limited and only applies in certain situations.
When a ride is in progress—meaning the driver has accepted a ride, regardless of whether or not the passenger is technically in the vehicle—both Uber and Lyft offer up to $1 million in coverage. This means that if you are injured as an Uber or Lyft passenger, this $1 million coverage limit applies. If you are injured by an Uber or Lyft driver while driving your own vehicle, the amount of coverage available from the respective rideshare company will depend on whether the driver was in period 1, 2, or 3.
Note that if the driver who caused the accident was not actively working for a rideshare company at the time of the crash, meaning the app was not “on” or in “active mode,” you will need to file a standard car accident claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance for compensation; neither Uber nor Lyft’s back-up coverage will apply.
Although major rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft provide back-up insurance for accidents caused by their drivers in certain situations, these companies are not keen on paying out claims or providing compensation for victims’ damages. In fact, both Uber and Lyft have taken steps to protect themselves from liability. Namely, these entities classify their drivers as “independent contractors,” not employees. This means they technically cannot be sued for damages, as they are not legally liable for the conduct of their drivers.
By law, employers are generally liable for damages caused by their employees while those employees are actively carrying out duties that benefit the employer. But because Uber and Lyft drivers are independent contractors, these rideshare companies cannot be sued by victims, even when the rideshare drivers are entirely at fault for a crash.
After any motor vehicle accident, the first thing you should do is make sure you get the medical attention and care you need. Your safety and well-being are of the utmost importance; see a doctor or medical professional right away, even if you believe your injuries are not that serious or might heal on their own.
You should also report the accident as soon as possible. In Mississippi, you are required to report any accident that results in injury, death, or apparent property damage of $500 or more to the local police or sheriff’s department. You should also report the incident to the appropriate rideshare company. You can do this online or by contacting the rideshare company directly.
After the crash, you’ll want to file a claim right away. The sooner you file your claim, the sooner you can (ideally) receive a settlement to assist with the cost of your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. If your claim is denied, you can immediately begin fighting back and seeking the fair compensation you are owed.
We encourage you to reach out to our experienced Jackson Uber and Lyft accident attorneys at as soon as possible to learn how we can help you with your claim. Seeking compensation after a rideshare accident is difficult, time-consuming, and stressful, but with the right legal team by your side, you can focus on your physical and emotional recovery while our rideshare accident attorneys in Jackson fight for the justice and financial compensation you deserve.