For those looking for a safe ride home after a few glasses of wine, a reliable commute without the hassle of driving, or simply an easier way to get around, ridesharing services offer convenience and affordability. Since hitting Calgary’s streets in 2015, Uber and Lyft have become an increasingly popular alternative to taxis. More and more people are saying so long to the days of having to call to book a taxi, only to be put on hold for several minutes, and wait upwards of an hour on a busy weekend for their cab to arrive, only to have it stolen by someone else. A ridesharing service, or transportation network company (TNC), connects drivers and passengers through a mobile app that offers transportation in a driver’s personal vehicle. Ridesharing is affordable, the mobile app technology makes tracking and paying for your ride easy, and you can select drivers based on their rating. While Uber and Lyft generally provide safe transportation, accidents do happen. It’s easy to feel at ease when you’re not behind the wheel, but your Uber is not invincible. Accidents may happen as a result of human error, poor driving conditions, or other unforeseen factors. Whatever the cause, if you were injured in an Uber or Lyft accident that was not your fault, we can help. At Litwiniuk & Company, we’ll answer all your questions and take care of the legal work so that you can focus on getting your health back.
A Crash Course on Rideshare Accidents
So long as there are drivers on the roads, it’s an unfortunate reality that there will also be accidents. Chances are you have a pretty good idea of what to do if you get into an accident with another motor vehicle. But what should you do when you are the passenger of a ridesharing vehicle that gets into an accident?
The first and most important thing is your health and safety – seek medical attention right away, even if you feel fine. If the accident was serious, call emergency services and follow the advice of medical personnel. It may take hours, days, or even weeks to realize the full extent of your injuries. Adrenaline may be running high at the time of your accident and you may not be aware of the full extent of your injuries. Because internal injuries are not visible, it is very important to get diagnostic tests done by a medical professional right away. The results of these tests, along with your doctor’s records, will get you the treatment you need and provide valuable evidence should you decide to make a claim. Call your doctor to set up an appointment as soon as possible.
Get the driver’s contact information and collect evidence – even if your Uber or Lyft driver is not at fault, it is very important to get your driver’s contact information. If you are able, take down the names and phone numbers of any other drivers involved and witnesses. If you have a mobile phone, use it to document everything you can think of including the insurance and registration of all vehicles involved. A single picture could mean the difference of thousands of dollars in compensation, so take as many photos as you can of the scene and your injuries. The more documentation you have, the better. If you are reading this after the fact and you weren’t able to collect these details at the time of the accident, that’s okay too. It’s common for people involved in an accident to be in a state of shock or seriously injured and unable to document anything at the time. The good news is, our Uber and Lyft accident lawyers are experts at gathering evidence after the fact. Keep in mind the sooner you contact a Personal Injury lawyer, the easier it will be for them to locate witnesses and collect important details about your accident.
Contact a Personal Injury lawyer right away – when it comes to accident claims, the sooner you get proper legal advice, the better. Even if you don’t proceed with a lawyer, it is important to know exactly what type of compensation and benefits you are entitled to. Insurance companies are quick to offer settlements – and often for the lowest possible amount. It’s hard to know what your claim is “worth” without getting an experienced injury lawyer to assess it. There are also important deadlines that come up for making a claim and for accessing important medical benefits. At Litwiniuk & Company, it won’t cost you a thing to speak to an Uber and Lyft accident lawyer. And if you choose to proceed with a claim, you won’t have to pay us a cent while your claim progresses because we don’t get paid until you get paid.
Unsure about insurance coverage?
In Alberta, Uber and Lyft passengers are covered under commercial auto insurance in the case of an accident. The type of insurance often depends on the specifics of the accident. For example, if your driver was not at fault, the insurance company of the driver who is at fault will usually cover the costs of your injury claim. Sadly, many rideshare accident victims accept settlements that are far lower than what they are entitled to. A knowledgeable Calgary Uber and Lyft accident lawyer will be able to tell you what your claim is actually worth. The types of insurance that ridesharing companies provide have evolved over the years, and that picture will likely continue to change over time. Coverage tends to vary between provinces in Canada, even within the same ridesharing company.
Uber currently provides the following insurance coverage for accidents in Alberta:
- $2 million for third-party liability coverage
- Covers your liability to third parties from the moment you accept an Uber trip until its conclusion.
- $2 million for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage
- Alberta statutory accident benefit
- Protects vehicle occupants who are injured in an accident by a hit-and-run driver, an uninsured driver, or a driver without sufficient insurance.
Lyft currently provides the following insurance coverage for accidents in Alberta:
- $1,000,000 for 3rd-party auto liability
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury (Lyft does not currently specify a dollar amount but states that coverage, where provided, may be modified to the extent allowed by law)
Insurance companies hope to settle for the lowest possible amount, so your claim may be worth far more than the first offer you receive. Adjusters may try to pressure you into admitting fault or signing documents before you realize the full extent of your injuries and, ideally, before you speak to a lawyer and find out what your claim is worth. You are under no obligation to divulge any details about the accident or accept their offer. It’s advisable to say as little as possible to the insurance company of the at-fault person until you have a good idea of what you are entitled to receive for compensation.
In Alberta, you generally have up to two years from the date of a rideshare accident to make a claim in court or your right to do so is lost forever. But it’s important not to wait as there may be other important deadlines, or other circumstances that may affect the deadline or your claim. If you have any questions about the limitation period for your claim, call or email us for a free consultation with one of our Calgary Uber and Lyft accident lawyers today.
Our Calgary Uber and Lyft Accident Lawyers Are Here to Help
With ridesharing companies being relatively new to Alberta’s roads, there are an increasing number of “what if” scenarios. And that means more legal questions. Simply talking with a Personal Injury lawyer could mean the difference of thousands of dollars in your pocket and your peace of mind. It won’t cost you a thing to talk to one of our experienced Calgary Uber and Lyft accident lawyers. At Litwiniuk & Company, we have a dedicated Personal Injury team, connected with Calgary’s best medical practitioners, and the resources to help you get better. We’re here to reduce your stress in any way we can and help you get your life back. If you choose us, we won’t charge you anything until your claim is resolved and you have received your settlement. Our lawyers will ensure you get fair compensation for your injuries, and access to the treatment and benefits you are entitled to. If you or someone you love has recently been injured in an Uber or Lyft accident, give us a call or click here to speak with a lawyer.