Mark Roman | October 20, 2014 | Car Accidents
According to a slew of accusations from taxi companies, ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft may leave passengers without proper insurance coverage. In the case of an accident, taxi companies claim, Uber and Lyft don’t have enough coverage to provide the compensation passengers may need for medical costs and other damages. In reality, the taxi companies couldn’t be more wrong. In fact, some members of the legal community believe that Uber and Lyft actually provide superior coverage for passengers.
A close look at Lyft and Ubert’s liability policies reveals that the ridesharing companies cover certain damages, even when the passenger’s provider does not. What does this mean? Lyft and Uber offer “excess coverage” for riders: coverage that goes above and beyond what the passenger already carries.
According to ridesharing critics, the insurance company will always deny a claim for ridesharing injuries. The reason is simple: most personal insurance policies deny claims if the driver operated the vehicle “for profit.” Thus, your insurance company will deny a claim for Lyft or Uber injuries, right?
In reality, the issue is practically irrelevant because Lyft and Uber’s insurance is designed to pick up the tab even if the driver’s insurance provider already denied it. This is how “excess coverage” works. Passengers don’t need to worry because Lyft and Uber actually provide the necessary coverage apart from the driver’s coverage.
Not only do Lyft and Uber provide excess coverage, but their policy states that injured passengers get up to $1 million in personal injury liability.
Most states only require $10,000 to $25,000 in bodily injury coverage, making Lyft and Uber’s $1 million cap almost excessive. In comparison, most taxicab companies provide between $250,000 and $500,000 in coverage for passengers. In Florida, taxi companies typically carry no more than the minimum amount of coverage: $125, 000.
In addition to providing better insurance coverage than taxi companies (generally speaking), Lyft and Uber offer compensation for passengers struck by uninsured or underinsured motorists. In other words, you can still seek financial compensation for your injury, even if the ridesharing driver was not responsible for your accidentand the liable party had inadequate insurance to cover your damages.
Although some taxicab companies offer uninsured motorist coverage for passengers, many do not. Florida law does not require taxi companies to purchase this type of coverage, so it is unlikely that passengers will receive coverage in the event of an accident.
In Florida, Lyft and Uber passengers get 400 percent more coverage than taxicab passengers.
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