Rideshare accidents are becoming increasingly common in Louisiana. As more people rely on Uber and Lyft for day-to-day transportation or as a way to earn a living, we are increasingly seeing accidents involving rideshare vehicles. If you have been injured in a rideshare accident—either as a driver or as a passenger—you have clear legal rights, but you will need an experienced lawyer to help you fight for the financial compensation you deserve.
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Your Legal Rights After a Rideshare (Uber or Lyft) Accident in Louisiana
Your legal rights following a rideshare accident in Louisiana are similar to your rights after any other type of vehicle collision. This means that you have the right to financial compensation if someone else (or a company) was at fault, and you have the right to hire a lawyer to deal with the insurance companies for you.
Determining who (or what company) was at fault in a rideshare accident requires a prompt and thorough investigation. When you hire a lawyer to represent you, your lawyer will examine all possible causes of the collision, and your lawyer will explore all possible sources of financial compensation. This includes common causes such as:
- Distracted driving (i.e., looking at GPS directions)
- Drunk or high driving
- Failure to stop or yield
- Falling asleep behind the wheel
- Fatigued driving
- Following too closely
- Passing dangerously
- Turning, changing lanes, or merging without looking
- Other Louisiana traffic law violations
Along with these (and other) forms of driver negligence, a variety of other issues can lead to rideshare accidents as well. These include (but are not limited to) issues such as:
- Uber and Lyft approving unqualified drivers
- Uber and Lyft drivers failing to maintain their vehicles
- Tire blowouts, brake failures, and other vehicle defects
- Road maintenance issues and defects
- Highway construction zones and other hazards
Filing a Claim (or Claims) After a Rideshare Accident in Louisiana
Based on the cause (or causes) of your accident, your lawyer will be able to determine what claim (or claims) you can file. While many rideshare accident victims will have claims against Uber or Lyft, there are other possibilities as well.
Some examples of the claims a rideshare accident lawyer in Louisiana may be able to file on your behalf include:
- A Claim Under Uber’s or Lyft’s Insurance Policy – Uber and Lyft both have liability insurance that covers accidents involving their drivers. Specifically, Uber’s and Lyft’s liability insurance policies cover: (i) accidents that occur while drivers are providing pre-arranged rides; and, (ii) accidents that occur while drivers are logged in and on their way to pick up a passenger who has requested a pre-arranged ride. If Uber’s or Lyft’s insurance coverage applies, you can file a claim regardless of whether you were driving or riding as a passenger at the time of the collision.
- A Claim Under the Rideshare Driver’s Insurance Policy – If the rideshare driver is responsible for your injuries, your lawyer can seek financial compensation under the driver’s insurance policy. Enhanced liability insurance is mandatory for rideshare drivers in Louisiana, so the driver should have coverage available.
- A Claim Under Another Driver’s Insurance Policy – If another driver caused the accident, your lawyer can help you file a claim under his or her insurance policy. In Louisiana, all drivers are required to carry auto insurance (though not the same level of coverage as rideshare drivers). Rideshare drivers, passengers, and others can all file claims when a negligent driver is responsible for their injuries.
- A Claim Under Your Insurance Policy – Depending on the coverage you have available, filing a claim under your insurance policy may also be an option. Specifically, a lawyer may be able to help you file for medical payments (MedPay) or uninsured/underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage. While these types of auto insurance are optional in Louisiana, many drivers have them; and, if you were seriously injured in a rideshare accident, it will be important for you to pursue all sources of financial recovery you have available.
- An Insurance Claim Involving Third–Party Liability – From claims against vehicle manufacturers to claims against government highway agencies, there are a variety of other potential options for recovering financial compensation after a rideshare accident in Louisiana. When you hire an experienced lawyer to represent you, your lawyer will assess all potential claims, and your lawyer will help you make informed decisions about asserting your legal rights.
What to Do After a Serious Rideshare Accident in Louisiana
To protect your legal rights after a serious rideshare accident in Louisiana, there are some steps you should take as soon as possible. These steps include:
1. Document the Accident (and Keep Your Photos and Videos)
You should write down every single detail you can remember about the accident. You should also take photos of your injuries and the damage to your car (if you were driving). If you were able to take photos and videos at the accident scene, be sure to keep these on your phone so that you can share them with your lawyer.
2. See a Doctor
To make sure you get the treatment you need (and to prove that your injuries are accident-related), you should see a doctor promptly. During your appointment, be sure to tell your doctor that you were injured in a rideshare accident, and describe your symptoms with as much detail as possible.
3. Talk to a Lawyer Who Handles Serious Rideshare Accidents
Protecting your rights after a rideshare accident requires experienced legal representation. With this in mind, once you see a doctor for diagnosis and treatment, your next step should be to schedule a free initial consultation with a lawyer who handles serious rideshare accidents.
Discuss Your Rideshare Accident Case with Attorney Chris J. Roy, Jr. in Alexandria, LA
Chris J. Roy, Jr. is an experienced personal injury lawyer who represents victims of serious rideshare accidents in Louisiana. If you have been injured in an accident involving an Uber or Lyft vehicle, you can call 318-413-6660 or contact us online for a free consultation.