What Happens If I’m Injured in an Uber Accident?
Author: Auger Law | June 1st, 2018
Uber is a popular ride sharing service used by millions of people around the globe. People choose to utilize Uber for a variety of reasons, whether they are commuting to work or had a bit too much to drink during a night out.
Few people get into a car being driven by an Uber driver expecting to be involved in an accident. But unfortunately car accidents do occur. If you are a passenger in an Uber vehicle or struck by one, you have rights. Read on for more info about the steps you should take after an Uber accident in North Carolina or South Carolina.
Immediately Following the Accident
Being involved in an accident with an Uber driver is similar to being the driver in your own accident. The first concern should always be on everyone’s safety. Dealing with emergency related injuries should be your primary concern if there are any. After calling 911, if possible move the vehicles to a safe location. If the situation is one where it is possible to do so, you will want to try to collect as much information as possible.
If you are a passenger, get the Uber driver’s name and contact information. Ask for the information of all other parties involved in the accident as well as their insurance information. Lastly, ask for contact information for any witnesses who stayed on scene to offer assistance.
Once you have collected information, take photos or video of the accident scene. You’ll want to record the damage to all vehicles involved, any injuries suffered by people involved, and the current weather and road conditions. Try to take images before vehicles move to the side of the road. This information can be very helpful later on if there are insurance claims or personal injury lawsuits filed.
Insurance can be a confusing issue when it comes to Uber drivers. The ride sharing service is required to have its own liability policy that covers anyone injured in an accident, if the Uber driver was the cause of the accident. If your Uber driver wasn’t at fault, the other driver’s insurance coverage should be responsible for any claims that you may have or anyone else that was injured by their driver’s negligence.
You may also want to research your own personal auto policy. You may have medical payment benefits or other coverage that may be beneficial to you. Find out if you have medical payment benefits or “med pay”.
Determining liability when an Uber driver is involved in an accident is no different than if any other driver was involved. Police will look for evidence on scene and take your statement, statements of those involved and any statements from available witnesses.
Again, If your Uber driver caused the accident, you will want to seek compensation from the liability insurance policy that the Uber driver is insured under. If another driver is found to be at fault, you will look for compensation from that driver’s policy. Those insurance policies should be provided to you at the scene of the accident. In some cases a police officer may give you a driver’s exchange form that contains the info. If you do not get it from the officer or from the other drivers at the scene, you should be able to find the information on the final police report that will be released at a later time.
After the Accident
Things may become overwhelming after an Uber accident in the Carolinas. As the injured party, you can expect to be potentially contacted by one or more insurance companies. It’s important to remember that you do not have to speak to them.
You do not have to make a statement about the accident, and you do not have to tell the claims adjuster or claims agent your version of events. Try to keep in mind that no matter how nice the insurance representative seems, they have their company’s best interests in mind, not yours. Anything you say could be potentially used to limit or deny your claim.
Depending on the severity of the accident, Uber or their insurace company could also have a senior level adjuster or even an attorney try to contact you. If this happens, you are still under no obligation to speak to them. This happens in rare cases, but is a possibility. Just keep in mind that anything you say can have negative consequences on your potential bodily injury claim.
Claims, Lawsuits and Lawyers?
Your next steps will be determined on the extent of your injuries. If you are not injured and you do not need or receive any medical treatment, then you will be fortunate enough to not need to file a bodily injury claim against the proper insurance entity. If you are injured, a bodily injury claim will need to be filed with the insurance company. The value and timing of that claim will again be determined by your injuries and other factors such as your medical bills, recorded medical treatments that document your injuries and other things such as lost wages and pain and suffering. Be mindful that if you do not have an attorney and if you are in contact with the insurance company, the insurance company may try to encourage you to enter into settlement negotiations with them while you are still injured and receiving medical treatment.
The moment you accept a settlement from an insurance agency, you have effectively ended your case. If you have even the smallest doubt about accepting a settlement, don’t. Most attorneys offer a free case evaluation, meaning you have time to speak to a legal representative before you accept any offer from an insurance company. Most attorneys will say that even before you are in contact with an adverse insurance company it is a best practice to speak to an experienced lawyer that can prevent you from making the possible mistakes that can have a negative effect on your case. A legal professional can represent you and negotiate on your behalf. In some cases that cannot be resolved without the filing of a lawsuit, your attorney may even have to represent you in Court if necessary. These are just limited examples of what you can expect when you hire an experienced lawyer to represent you for your injury case.
Speak with a Charlotte Uber Accident Attorney Today
If you have been involved in an Uber accident in North Carolina or elsewhere in North Carolina, or South Carolina, reach out to our experienced personal injury team. We are ready to speak with you regarding your case and we will help you discover your options.
We understand that you may be stressed and anxious right now, and we are prepared to do all that we can do to assist you. Call our office today to schedule an appointment for a free case evaluation that can take place in person or over the phone.