How do I file a lawsuit against Lyft?
Lyft is a ridesharing company which allows consumers to get rides on demand. Like any automobile on Nevada roadways, sometimes there are accidents involving a Lyft. Whether the person who was injured is a Lyft driver, passenger, or a driver or passenger in another vehicle, understanding Lyft’s liability is important.
When anyone suffers an injury in a Lyft accident, they may contact an attorney who has experience with rideshare accidents. These accidents can be very complicated due to numerous factors including driver status.
Driver status at time of accident makes a difference
Before an accident victim can sue Lyft, they must be able to point to how they are liable for the injuries sustained. There are times when Lyft insurance policies do not provide coverage to drivers. The status of the drivers are as follows:
- Driver not logged in and causing an accident — Lyft has no liability in this case and if the driver is responsible for an accident, the claim would have to be pursued with their insurer.
- Drive logged in an no ride has been accepted — provided the driver is logged into the app and waiting for a potential rider, ten any accident which is their fault will be covered up to the limits offered by the Lyft policies.
- Driver has accepted a rider and is enroute to pick them up — in these cases, if the driver is at fault for the accident, Lyft has a higher liability. An accident victim may pursue compensation from Lyft.
- Driver has a passenger — until such time as the driver is alone in the vehicle, if they are responsible for an accident, then Lyft may be liable for the injuries a victim, or multiple victims suffer.
These can be very complicated cases since they may require requests to Lyft showing that the driver was either active, or that they were driving at the time of the accident. In nearly all cases, a rideshare lawyer can help victims obtain this information.
Negotiating with Lyft insurance adjusters
As with any insurance company, Lyft insurers are going to do everything possible to minimize a victim’s claim. Some of the issues which injured parties may face include:
- Independent medical exam — while Lyft’s insurer may claim their doctors are independent, the fact is the doctor is there to minimize the amount of any settlement that Lyft will have to pay to a victim. Before a victim sees the doctor assigned by the insurance company, the accident should be discussed with a personal injury lawyer.
- Quick settlement offers after a serious injury — in some cases, an accident victim who suffered serious injuries will receive a fast settlement offer from Lyft’s insurer. This is because they know the faster they can settle, the less the liability. Victims should consider having a rideshare accident attorney review all settlement offers before they are accepted.
- Immediate claim denial — sometimes Lyft will simply deny any liability for the losses an accident victim has claimed. When this occurs, an attorney can help a victim by showing the insurer the evidence which points to the liability.
When Lyft accepts liability for an accident, there may be negotiations back and forth before a settlement can be reached. Typically, these negotiations involve the attorneys representing Lyft and the victim. At all times, an attorney for a victim will advise their client of the terms of the offer and help them understand the pros and cons of the offer.
Victims should always keep in mind that once a settlement is agreed to, the insurance company has no further liability, even if the victims’ losses increase after the settlement.
Damage claims following a Lyft accident
Once it has been established that Lyft is responsible to an accident victim for the losses they suffered the following types of compensation may be included in a claim:
- Wage losses — the time it takes a victim to recover from an injury often involves them being out of work. A wage loss claim can include unpaid wages. This may include additional funds if the victim is forced to use vacation days, sick days, or personal days.
- Medical bills — any medical bills which are not covered by health insurance including copayments, prescription drugs, medical equipment such as braces or crutches, and rehabilitation can be included in a Lyft insurance claim.
- Other losses — depending on a number of factors, a skilled rideshare attorney may be able to secure additional compensation for pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, and other non-monetary awards.
Whether a rideshare accident victim lives in Las Vegas or was visiting Las Vegas and involved in a rideshare accident, the personal injury laws in Nevada will apply to their case. A Nevada rideshare injury attorney can help make sure that victims understand what rights they have.
Hiring a rideshare attorney in Nevada
In some cases, a Lyft accident victim feels they can simply file a claim with the company and a settlement check will be forthcoming. This is seldom the case. No insurance company likes to pay claims because it has a negative impact on their bottom line. Victims often do not know what rights are extended to them as victims of an accident which were not their fault. This is why many people turn to experienced rideshare attorneys.
While a victim is recovering from injuries suffered in a Lyft accident, an attorney can deal with many of the formalities necessary to file a suit against Lyft. Some of the issues a lawyer can take care of include:
- Obtaining police reports
- Obtaining witness statements
- Subpoena the records for the Lyft driver’s app
- Obtain copies of medical records showing the victim’s injuries
- Negotiate on behalf of the victim to get the compensation they deserve
- Prepare a case for court if negotiations fail
Since Nevada’s personal injury statute of limitations allows only two years for a lawsuit to be filed, an attorney will be fully prepared in the event negotiations fail. This is typically a better option than waiting until it becomes evident the insurer is not negotiating in good faith.
Whether a victim was a driver or passenger of a Lyft vehicle, or the Lyft driver was at fault for an accident, getting a free consultation from a Nevada car accident lawyer may help victims get the compensation they deserve following a Lyft accident.