Jackson Rideshare Accident Attorneys
Uber & Lyft Accidents in Mississippi
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.
To learn more, contact our Jackson rideshare accident lawyers at (888) 484-1476 today and request a free initial consultation.
How Do Rideshare Accident Claims Work?
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 Does Uber or Lyft’s Insurance Coverage Kick in After an Accident?
As mentioned above, Uber and Lyft only offer limited insurance coverage in certain situations. Specifically, these companies provide back-up insurance during three “driving periods.”
These driving periods are as follows:
- Period 1: The rideshare driver has the app turned on and is actively working for the company by seeking a ride but has not yet accepted a ride.
- Period 2: The rideshare driver has accepted a ride but is still on the way to pick up the passenger and does not yet have them in the vehicle.
- Period 3: The rideshare driver has accepted a ride and has the passenger in the vehicle while transporting them to their destination.
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.
Can You Sue Uber or Lyft After an Accident?
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.