What Is My Uber Car Crash Case Worth?
There has been an increasing popularity of ridesharing services these past few years. After all, ridesharing services like Uber offer the affordability and convenience that typical taxis don’t. However, just like any other vehicle, the risk of car crashes on the road are still present.
If you’re an Uber passenger and unfortunately got caught in a car crash accident, then keep in mind that you might be entitled to a financial recovery for all the damages you’ve obtained. Also, how you proceed with your car crash case and the possible claims you can get will come down to who’s at fault.
Before you even calculate how much your Uber car crash case is worth, you want to understand first how “damages” work.
“Damages” You Can Get from an Uber Car Crash
Just like any injury-related case, you need to understand the scope of your “damages” before you figure out your injury claim’s value. In case you’re wondering, “damages” is a legal term referring to the compensation for losses you’ve suffered. They’re often paid by the defendant; in some cases, it can be paid by his insurance company.
You have to keep in mind that the financial responsibility for this type of case isn’t always clear. It could either fall to Uber’s uninsured motorist insurance coverage, to your Uber driver himself (to which his car insurance policy will unlikely cover any accident that could happen after picking up his passenger), or to the at-fault party (another driver responsible for the accident).
Regardless of whose responsibility it falls into, the compensation you can get is considered damages. Let’s have a look at the following categories of damages that might play a part in your Uber car crash case:
1. Loss of Income and Earning Capacity
If you’re forced to take a leave from your job due to the injuries you sustained as a rideshare passenger, or if your ability to earn a living has been largely affected, then it will be a factor in your damages. This will allow you to receive compensation for any income you’ve lost – and for the potential income you can earn in the future – while you’re incapacitated by your injury.
2. Previous and Ongoing Medical Expenses
If you settle your Uber car crash case, then your damages will include compensation for the following:
- Future medical care for your injury
- Medical treatment you’ve had due to the accident
Keep in mind that if the extent of your injuries isn’t fully confirmed, then you don’t want to agree to an injury settlement offer yet. Most likely, your lawyer will advise you to wait until both of you can fully confirm the damage you’ve sustained from such an injury.
This simply because if you end up accepting an injury settlement, you will no longer be able to reopen your claim. This can be quite problematic if you find out that the extent of your injury is far worse than you initially thought.
3. Pain and Suffering
Even though it’s easier to calculate the first two categories, this one won’t be that easy. Nonetheless, it still plays a major part in determining how much your Uber car crash case is worth, especially if your injuries are severe.
The “pain and suffering” category can be further categorized into the following:
- Physical pain such as discomfort due to the injury
- Mental pain such as the possible psychological impact of your injuries due to the accident
How to Calculate Your Case’s Worth
As mentioned earlier, the “damages” you’ve sustained can help you calculate your car crash case’s worth. However, you also have to keep in mind that each case is different, especially since ridesharing has a very complex legal nature. Therefore, it’s really impossible to estimate the general compensation you can receive until the details of your case have been properly discussed with a car accident attorney who specializes in Uber cases.
Then again, even though it won’t be possible to get an approximate compensation before you talk with an attorney, you can still have an idea of how much you can possibly get with the help of two factors: the severity of your injuries and your driver’s status by the time the accident happened.
How severe is your injury?
The extent of your injury will affect the settlement amount you can get, with the more severe injuries getting higher settlements. The insurance company or legal professional working on your case will take into account all three categories mentioned earlier.
If you only sustained minor, quick-healing injuries as an Uber passenger when the car crash occurred, then you’ll most likely receive little compensation since the impact of the injury in your life wasn’t that huge. These minor injuries could be in the form of cuts, bruises, and tiny wounds.
On the other hand, if you sustained major injuries that will cause you to become incapacitated and unable to get back to your normal routine as soon as possible, then you’ll be entitled to an even larger compensation. Then again, exactly how much you’ll receive will vary. For example, if your injury forced you to undergo surgeries and rehab therapy which can potentially cost you tons of money, then you can receive even larger settlements up to a million dollars.
How was the driver’s condition?
Uber drivers work as “independent contractors”, and this means that they might deny liability during an accident since they’re not employed by the company. However, Uber actually has an insurance policy designed to protect its company, the drivers, as well as the passengers provided that several conditions are met.
In this case, the coverage will depend on the driver’s status or activity when the accident happened. Here are some examples:
- If the car crash was due to an uninsured or even underinsured driver, then both you and your Uber driver are entitled to Uber’s uninsured motorist policy that covers up to $1 million.
- If an Uber driver is driving his car but is not accepting passengers, then his personal car insurance policy will cover for him in the event of an accident.
- If an Uber driver is about to pick up a passenger but wasn’t carrying said passenger yet at the time of the accident, then he will have to cover it with his own insurance policy. However, Uber does offer additional injury coverage which can amount up to $100,000.
- On the other hand, if the Uber driver already has a passenger at the time of the accident, then both of them (alongside the other injured party, if any), might receive coverage of up to $1 million under Uber’s liability insurance policy.
The at-fault party’s insurance policy will serve as the main policy, though most of the time, Uber’s $1 million policy can be accessed if you sustained injuries in an Uber car crash.
Who was the one at fault?
Aside from the two mentioned, this is another factor that will play a role in the settlement amount you can possibly get. As an Uber passenger, it’s almost certain that you’re not at fault for the accident. Nonetheless, you will have to prove who the at-fault part is so they can be legally held liable for the injuries you sustained.
For example, if your Uber driver is the one at fault due to his carelessness or perhaps reckless driving behavior, then his insurance company might be the one to take responsibility. It can also potentially increase the settlement amount you can get. However, keep in mind that it won’t be that easy to get compensation through an Uber accident settlement if you do it on your own. For this, it’s best to consult with an Uber accident attorney, especially when you’re dealing with a major company such as Uber.
Meanwhile, if the one at fault was another driver, then his insurance policy will be the one to provide coverage. In some cases, however, you would end up in a fight with the other party to find out whether your Uber driver is partially to blame or not.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Uber Accident Claim
You have to keep in mind that Uber is a business – and a large one at that. Therefore, even if you sustained injuries as an Uber passenger, they will do their best to pay out as little as possible or even avoid paying at all. If you end up filing an injury claim against them for the damages you sustained, they will most likely dispute your claims. After all, the more their liability, the higher their premiums will go. As a result, it can have a massive impact on their bottom line.
Therefore, if you want to get the most out of your Uber accident claim, make sure that you get in touch with an experienced and capable attorney who specializes in Uber accidents. Not only will a legal professional’s help allow you to win your case, but it can also potentially increase the amount of settlement you can receive.
If you've been hurt in an accident, please give me a call for a free consultation at 312-500-4500 . The call and the consultation are free.
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