Who Is at Fault in a San Diego Lyft Accident?
Were you involved in a Lyft accident? Do you know that being in an accident with a ride-share vehicle is different from being involved in a crash with another vehicle? Did you know that Lyft drivers do not have much experience driving passengers around commercially?
With over 500,000 ride-share drivers in California, Lyft accidents are bound to happen. When accidents happen, you may be feeling overwhelmed and confused in the aftermath of a Lyft accident. At The Levinson Law Group, we understand how you feel and know how to deal with Lyft. Determining fault is often a complex issue, so you will need skilled legal counsel to help you seek justice. Our San Diego Lyft accident lawyers are dedicated to helping you hold those at fault for your accident accountable.
How Is Fault Determined
In San Diego and across the state, responsibility for a crash is based on negligence. That includes collisions involving ride-share such as Lyft. If the Lyft driver was negligent, that driver is at fault, or liable, for other’s injured drivers and/or passengers for injuries and damages incurred.
To recover damages after a crash in a San Diego Lyft accident, the plaintiff or injured survivor must prove three things:
- The at-fault driver/defendant owed the survivor/plaintiff the duty of being care;
- The at-fault driver breached that duty by being negligent; and
- The at-fault driver’s negligent act was a significant element in causing the survivor’s injuries.
The definition of duty of care is that anyone who drives is to use reasonable care when doing so, watching all traffic on the road, looking for obstacles, obeying traffic laws and watching for pedestrians. Not using reasonable care when driving is called negligence. When the vehicle code is violated in California, the at-fault driver may be negligent per se (presumed negligent) because they violated a statute or law.
A negligent act that results in a collision can establish negligence per se if the act or the at-fault driver’s actions were speeding, driving while distracted, running a stop sign, running a stop signal, and using a cellphone while driving.
What Are Transportation Networks?
Lyft is a transportation network because it transports others to various destinations and acts as a matching service between drivers and passengers. Lyft’s commercial liability insurance coverage typically covers anyone who is injured while riding in a Lyft vehicle.
If you were a passenger in a San Diego Lyft accident, you may have a claim against the Lyft driver and may be covered by Lyft’s insurance if the damages exceed the driver’s insurance. If another driver caused the collision, an injured San Diego Lyft rider could file a claim against that driver. In some cases, the other driver may not carry insurance or not carry enough insurance. In those instances, Lyft’s UIM/UM policy generally covers damages up to $1 million per accident.
If the Lyft Driver Was Negligent
If another driver and passenger were hurt in a crash caused by a Lyft driver, the survivors would have a claim against the San Diego Lyft driver. Although, that depends on whether or not the transportation network driver had a passenger in the vehicle at the time or was going to pick a rider up, whether or not the Lyft application was turned on, and the driver was waiting for a passenger, or the Lyft driver had no riders and the Lyft application was not turned on.
If the Lyft driver had not turned on the application, any crash they may be involved in would be treated the same as any other collision. That would also mean the insurance coverage is limited to the Lyft driver’s vehicle insurance.
If the driver has the application on, waiting to be hailer, contingent insurance coverage may apply with increased limits. And, if the driver has a passenger on board or has accepted a ride-hail and is going to pick that passenger up, the $1 million Lyft commercial insurance coverage becomes operable.
The difficulty here would be proving what time period the Lyft driver was in at the time of a crash. At the Levinson Law Group, we know all the right avenues to pursue to obtain the relevant information about what period the driver was in before the collision.
Who could be held liable in a Lyft accident?
Several parties could be held liable in a San Diego Lyft accident. They can include:
- The Lyft driver – Drivers of ride-share vehicles can have the same bad driving habits as any other driver, including driving while distracted or driving while intoxicated.
- The ride-share company – Although all drivers are supposed to be vetted, have a clean driving record and be qualified to be a Lyft driver, there are mistakes made in hiring.
- A manufacturing defect causing mechanical issues – As with regular vehicles being involved in a crash, Lyft vehicles can also be defective due to mechanical issues and poor maintenance.
- A rowdy passenger – Passengers have been known to be difficult, particularly if they are intoxicated or high. This can cause unexpected behavior resulting in a collision.
Discuss your San Diego Lyft accident with the Levinson Law Group. They can help you determine who may be responsible for your injuries.
Being involved in a San Diego Lyft accident is not like being involved in an accident with another driver. Lyft drivers are operating their personal vehicles, and most personal car insurance policies do not cover accidents while the car is being driven for commercial purposes.
Lyft accidents can be difficult and complex, but ride-share accident survivors can seek compensation for their injuries. There may likely be multiple insurance policies in play to cover losses after a San Diego Lyft accident.
Contact The Levinson Law Group Today
If you or a loved one were involved in a Lyft car accident, reach out to The Levinson Law Group attorneys right away. At The Levinson Law Group, our dedicated team of car accident lawyers is here to help.
If you have questions about the recovery process, we can answer them. If you are not sure you want to bring a case against the other driver, we will not pressure you. We only want to make sure that you are informed and make the best decision for yourself and your family.
When you decide to work with The Levinson Law Group, you can rest assured that you will have someone in your corner throughout the entire process. We accept cases on a contingent fee. That means that if there is no recovery in your case, you pay no fee. And in most cases, we even advance the costs. To learn more about your options, call The Levinson Law Group at 760-827-1700.