Who Pays if You’re Injured in a West Virginia Rideshare Accident?
You can sustain serious injuries in a ridesharing accident. Though these crashes have the same causes as any other car accident, people are often confused about who is liable for their damage and injury expenses. Figuring out who pays after a rideshare crash can be confusing. Today, we want to talk about these incidents and where the compensation will come from.
Ridesharing is everywhere now
Ten years ago, it would have seemed strange to get into a stranger’s car and pay for a ride somewhere. Now rideshare services are the norm. However, the drivers for companies like Uber, Lyft, and Juno are just like anyone else. Rideshare companies make it relatively easy to become a driver. They have no special training requirements.
If you are in a rideshare vehicle that is in a crash caused by another driver’s negligence, that vehicle’s driver is responsible for paying damages you accrue as a result. If your driver is at fault, you need to be aware of their insurance requirements.
Drivers for these companies must follow the basic insurance laws of Virginia. This means they must have the minimum coverage requirements:
- $25,000 for bodily injury per person ($50,000 per accident)
- $25,000 for property damage
Rideshare companies Uber and Lyft also cover their drivers with up to $1 million in liability insurance. However, their coverage has various levels depending on the status of the driver:
- If the rideshare driver is conducting personal business and it not signed into the driving app, then the driver’s personal insurance provider will be responsible for any accident expenses.
- If the rideshare driver is signed into the app to work and is waiting to pick up a passenger, then their personal insurance company will be primarily responsible for damage and injury expenses. The rideshare company’s insurance will not offer coverage unless a claim is denied by the personal insurance provider or if they do not offer enough to cover all of the expenses. This is limited to up to $100,000 for bodily injuries and up to $25,000 for property damage.
- If the rideshare driver has a passenger or is on the way to pick up a passenger, the full $1 million coverage applies to everyone involved in the crash – the passengers, the driver, and any third party.
What are the most common injuries from a ridesharing accident?
For the latest reporting year, there were 268 total traffic crash fatalities and 1,381 total serious traffic crash injuries in West Virginia. Rideshare accidents, just like any other vehicle crash, can cause various injuries. This can include:
- Broken and dislocated bones
- Severe lacerations
- Internal organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Spinal cord injuries
- Whiplash injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
Each of these injuries will lead to unexpected medical and hidden costs for victims.
What if my expenses cost more than $1 million?
Rideshare accidents can lead to major expenses for those injured. This can include:
- Current and future medical costs
- Pain and suffering as a result of the crash
- Financial losses, lost income, and loss of future earnings
- Emotional and psychological damages
For catastrophic injuries that leave a victim disabled and in need of long-term care, $1 million may not be enough to cover all expenses. For these cases, a rideshare accident victim can pursue a personal injury civil lawsuit against the negligent party and their insurance company.