​North Port Lyft Accident Lawyer

Rideshare accidents add a layer of complexity to claiming compensation for injuries sustained in North Port. In the case of a compensation claim, the driver may blame Lyft, Lyft may blame the driver, or both may blame your own PIP insurance – which in turn may point you back to Lyft or the driver.

Our North Port Lyft Accident Lawyers at Boohoff Law understand the complex process of pursuing insurance benefits after rideshare accidents injure you. Let us see what we can do for you. We’re ready to help. Contact us today for a free case consultation.

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Let us handle your case while you concentrate on your recovery, helping you understand the actual value of your claim, explaining all your options, and dealing with insurance companies and the legal system so you receive the compensation you deserve. Our Avvo rating as a top personal injury attorney is excellent.

According to the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys, we are among the top 10 firms in client satisfaction. We were awarded the best medical malpractice lawyers in Tampa by Expertise.com.

If you suffered an injury in a Lyft driving accident, become one of our thousands of happy clients.

What Is Lyft?

Lyft launched the ridesharing service in 2012 and connected riders with drivers who signed up to become independent contractors and connect with riders via the Lyft smartphone app. Lyft earns most of its revenues from automobile ridesharing in the U.S. and Canada. Due to their status as independent contractors, Lyft drivers don’t receive a set wage or benefits. The company says most drivers work less than 20 hours per week.

Lyft’s services are available in 300 metropolitan areas across the United States and Canada, making it the second-largest ridesharing company on the continent. In one recent year, rideshare companies provided more than four billion rides. Despite their ever-growing popularity, finding someone with the experience to handle a Lyft accident can be difficult. The rideshare attorneys at Boohoff Law have extensive experience handling similar cases and have dedicated themselves to getting you fair compensation.

Lyft Accidents: How Common are they?

Busy intersections in our area, such as Tamiami Trail, Tuscola Boulevard, South Biscayne Drive, and other locations along U.S. 41 and Interstate 75, see lots of car accidents.

In recent years, ridesharing has enjoyed a reputation as a safe mode of transportation. However, a study by the University of Chicago and Rice University found that traffic deaths have increased by two to three percent since the rise of rideshare services such as Lyft and Uber.

The study cited traffic congestion caused by “deadheading” drivers as one of the reasons for this increase. These drivers have their apps on and are waiting for a fare. Consumers are using rideshare apps to order rides instead of public transportation, which has increased congestion.

It is hard to find statistics on how many ridesharing trips end in accidents, even in news articles about accidents involving Lyft drivers. Through lobbying efforts and protective orders, rideshare companies have successfully quieted so-called dark information about injury accidents and sexual assaults occurring during rides, media sources reported.

Accountability for Lyft Drivers

Lyft drivers should follow all safety rules and laws to ensure the safety of others. Like any other driver, however, Lyft drivers can cut corners, have a lapse of concentration, or otherwise violate traffic laws. They should be accountable for any injuries that result from their carelessness or errors.

According to Lyft, drivers must obtain state-compliant insurance. Moreover, the rideshare company provides coverage to drivers and passengers during a trip. This insurance is mandatory, knowing that Lyft drivers can make mistakes and cause serious injuries. This does not, however, mean that all drivers comply with insurance requirements at all times they are on the road.

In response to severe accidents, Lyft deactivates the driver’s account while investigating the incident. After the investigation is complete, if the company has not uncovered any information that indicates a driver’s violation of company policies, the company reactivates the driver’s account, and the driver can begin accepting rides once more.

Lyft Accidents: Causes and Consequences

Most Lyft accidents follow the same pattern as other motor vehicle accidents. Distracted driving causes most of these accidents, which may be more of an issue for Lyft drivers.

Lyft drivers typically need to use a navigation app and communicate with passengers, which can interfere with their ability to pay attention to the vehicle’s operation. Lyft policy prohibits drivers who use the Lyft app while driving from doing so, yet they often do and end up causing severe accidents since this distracted behavior is no better than texting while driving.

The following are some common Lyft accident causes:

Lyft Accidents You May Encounter

The types of accidents you may encounter in a Lyft include:

When an Accident Occurs, How Does Lyft Protect its Drivers and Passengers?

Lyft provides up to $1 million in insurance under specific conditions.

Below is a breakdown of their insurance policy as explained on their website:

  • As long as the driver’s app is off and they are driving for personal reasons, their insurance policy will cover damages.
  • A driver’s personal insurance policy should provide primary coverage if their app is in driver mode, but they have not accepted a ride. The company will, however, cover up to $50,000 for each person, $100,000 for each accident, and up to $25,000 for a damaged property when the personal insurance carrier fails to respond. There is no deductible associated with this coverage.
  • Lyft’s one million dollar liability insurance policy kicks in if the driver accepts a ride and is either en route to pick up the passenger or is transporting the passenger. As long as the driver has commercial insurance or a personal policy that specifically covers ridesharing, this coverage should supplement the driver’s personal insurance.

To become a driver for Lyft, drivers must complete these steps, which vary by state:

  • A vehicle inspection to determine whether or not it is too old or in poor repair for a driver to use it. In Florida, drivers need a 2008 model or newer. The car must have working seat belts and at least four doors.
  • A valid driver’s license, driving history, and criminal background check are required. Most Florida locations require drivers to be at least 25 to drive, except in Tallahassee, where the minimum driving age is 21.
  • Applicants for driver’s licenses must show proof of vehicle registration and personal insurance.
  • The driver must display the Lyft emblem on the windshield while the app is in driver mode.
  • For every 12 consecutive hours the app is in driver mode, Lyft drivers in Florida must take a complete, uninterrupted six-hour break.

Florida Lyft drivers may also drive in Alabama if they undergo an ASE or ATTI vehicle inspection. Furthermore, drivers moving to Florida from another state may switch their address with Lyft by sending a message containing a photo of their vehicle registration and insurance, if they haven’t done so already, the date of the move, and the new shipping address.

With the help of RAINN, North America’s largest anti-sexual violence organization, Lyft trained drivers on how to handle challenging passengers and keep everyone safe and comfortable on the ride. Every driver must complete this training.

Is Lyft Ever Liable for an Accident Caused by One of Its Drivers?

Historically, Lyft has argued that drivers who use its platform to accept rides are independent contractors. Lyft not only saves money on paying drivers minimum wage and covering job expenses, such as fuel, but it has also avoided much of the liability for injuries to passengers caused by Lyft drivers that exceed the insurance policy’s limits by the company.

The trend may be changing—one state at a time—as California recently enacted a law restricting rideshare companies from classifying their workers as independent contractors instead of employees. In California, about 8,000 Lyft riders filed a class-action lawsuit against the company.

Uber and Lyft are leading an initiative to shield digital platforms from this law. The state recently urged riders to reject Lyft’s settlement offer, which provided $100 to $600 per driver for their misclassification as independent contractors instead of employees. Nonetheless, the drivers must not disclose the settlement details as part of the deal.

Lyft might need to pay more if the law considered its drivers employees rather than independent contractors since they would legally act as agents for the company. In response to a lawsuit filed against the company by one of its drivers, Lyft argued that its drivers will have to go through arbitration to air their grievances individually, avoiding the possibility of class action.

In a State With No-Fault Insurance, How Does Lyft’s Insurance Work?

When it comes to automobile insurance, Florida is a no-fault state. Every driver in the state must provide proof of personal injury protection (PIP) with a minimum limit of $10,000. It pays up to 80 percent of the individual’s necessary medical expenses, and income benefits if the individual cannot work because of the accident injury.

No matter who is at fault in the accident, insurance coverage applies. If a rider has this insurance, they can access coverage for an accident that did not involve their own vehicle, or they can access coverage through the PIP policy of a family member, provided the policyholder lives in the same household.

A PIP policy may not cover you in a Lyft accident, as PIP coverage may not cover rideshare passengers. Similarly, Lyft itself does not offer personal injury protection. The company’s policy, however, includes bodily injury and uninsured motorist coverage, which you may use to compensate for your damages.

Florida No-Fault Law and Lyft Accidents

The personal insurance of the Lyft driver may be available to you if you were a driver or passenger in a non-Lyft vehicle and suffered an injury in an accident with an at-fault Lyft driver who did not have their app in driver mode. In cases where the driver has their app in driver mode but is not en route to pick up a passenger and is not transporting a passenger, both their personal insurance and a limited coverage policy from Lyft may apply. Lyft’s entire $1 million policy might be available if the driver was transporting a passenger when the accident occurred.

The driver’s personal insurance policy or Lyft’s policy can compensate you even if you have a PIP policy and you meet your state’s serious injury threshold.

Included in the severe injury threshold are:

  • Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
  • Permanent injury, within a reasonable degree of medical probability, other than scarring or disfigurement
  • Significant and permanent scarring and disfigurement
  • Death

You can recover compensation for medical expenses, wage loss, and non-economic damages, including pain and suffering, if you meet the serious injury threshold.

Contact Us if You Suffered an Injury in a North Port Lyft Accident

Here in North Port and across the country, ridesharing companies make transportation easier. Nevertheless, as you can see, accidents involving rideshare drivers can quickly become complicated when it comes to figuring out who pays for your injuries.

While you should focus on healing from your injuries, we can help you make sense of the process. You can easily contact us online or call us at any time at (941) 888-0848 for your free case evaluation. Let our experienced North Port Lyft accident attorneys handle your case and get you the compensation you deserve.

Boohoff Law North Port Office Location

14900 Tamiami Trail North Port,
FL 34287
(941) 260-0376

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