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Who Is Liable if an Uber Driver Hits You in California?

When an Uber driver hits you or your car, who is responsible? Is it them? Or the company? It is important to know exactly who is to blame and where your claim will take you. The good news is, there is always a path forward. The slightly unfortunate news is, that this road may be a complex journey. Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys present the guide below to clear things up on the subject.

Californian Road Laws

What does the law say? Well, any car accident that takes place in California state is subject to judgment of negligence. This means every single vehicle on the CA roads will be assessed for how much culpability they have if they are involved in an accident. Therefore, if an Uber crashes into you and it is completely their fault, for instance, they were texting, then they will be liable. But, who do you make a claim against insurance or personal injury wise? This is where our team of accident injury lawyers are the experts.

The Driver

Sometimes, it is possible to claim on the driver’s insurance or pursue a personal injury case against them personally. This might be possible if they were not actively working on behalf of Uber at the time of the collision. Or, if Uber decides they are not going to represent them for a technical reason like the driver breaking regulations and so on. If you are claiming against the individual driver, the case will be just like any other.

Uber the Brand

However, if you are working against Uber’s corporate lawyer team, you will need a bit of extra input. Don’t worry, it is always possible to get the results that you want; it might just take a little more time to arrive at that point. One of of Uber accident attorney experts can talk this through with you at any time.

How Do You Prove Negligence?

Ask any Uber crash lawyer and they will tell you there are three things you could need if you want to prove negligence in this kind of situation.

One: Establish Duty of Care

A ‘duty of care’ is something all the citizens (and visitors) to California have. It is the legal responsibility and general assumption that people take reasonable measures to ensure they do not hurt anyone while doing things like driving.

Two: Show Why It Was Neglected

The next step will involve a display of evidence that supports your claim around said duty of care being neglected. This can be things like

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Speeding
  • Distracted vehicle operation

Three: Prove This Negligence Caused Harm

The last step is to show why this act of negligence directly impacted you. There will be a link between the crash and the status of the driver, and this stage is simply about gathering evidence and putting the pieces together.

Determining Liability

There are a few factors that may complicate the process. It’s worth knowing what these roadblocks are so that you feel more confident if they come up along the way.

The Driver: Were They ‘On Shift?’

If the answer is yes, then technically Uber should take responsibility for the collision. This is not always the case, but the driver is representing the brand and they got into an accident on company time. Therefore, it is a company problem. However, there are complications like a driver failing to log in to the official Uber App and register a rideshare journey. While it doesn’t happen often, it does happen.

Was the Driver In a Fit State to Operate?

The next question concerns whether the driver was sober, awake, and driving safely. Should the answer be no, it is obvious to a vehicle accident lawyer that this could also complicate matters.

Uber’s Policies

Uber, of course, has an airtight and non-negotiable insurance policy. This covers drivers who may become involved in minor and major collisions while on shift. So, if their passenger becomes injured while they are representing the company, the policy covers up to $1 million of damages.

How to Move Forward

If you are filing a claim for either insurance or because of a personal injury, you need to know what comes next.

Finding Evidence

What evidence have you gathered so far? When meeting with our team, we will ask you about this, but it is nothing to be nervous about. Evidence is things that show your side of the story. So, anything from photographs of your injuries to accident report logs will be useful in determining liability.

Be Careful About What You Say

Slipping up and saying the wrong thing is so much easier than you could ever imagine. That is why we are here to coach you and be by your side. Every single conversation you have with an insurance company or a personal injury law firm from the negligent party should have your own lawyer present. Never speak with anyone alone because they can, and absolutely will, hold it against you. Anything that comes out of your mouth from this point forward is evidence and can be used in a court setting or during negotiations. Even if you didn’t mean it, it doesn’t matter.

Figure Out What You Are Claiming For

Did you suffer from a serious injury? Or is this insurance claim about your vehicle instead? Or, it could be a combination of the two factors. Everyone’s case is different, and we will work with you to determine the best course of action.

When an Uber driver hits your car or person in California, the state will determine who is to blame. This will require our team to establish negligence and explore the facts of the matter. Uber may or may not take the hit to their insurance, it all comes down to what happened and why.

Here at Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys, we are ready to help. Car accidents are a vulnerable time, and reaching out for help can make them easier to navigate. Get in touch and make an appointment to see us.

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