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Phoenix Uber & Lyft Accident Attorney

Using both Uber & Lyft are more common than ever before in the Phoenix area. Ridesharing has become the go-to mode of transportation for many people when their personal vehicle is not available. Yet, what happens if your Uber or Lyft driver ends up in an accident while you’re in the vehicle and you’re injured? How do you cope with the mounting medical bills? What about any damaged property you had? Do you deal with the rideshare driver, the rideshare company, or both?

At Hastings & Hastings, our experienced Uber & Lyft accident attorneys are here to help Phoenix accident victims and provide answers to these and other questions. Schedule your free case evaluation now to learn about your options, the legal rights that you may have, and how we may be able to help you get the compensation that you deserve.

Why Choose Hastings & Hastings For Your Uber or Lyft Accident Claim? 2022 png badgeChoosing the right legal representation for your Uber or Lyft accident claim can dramatically influence your outcome. Here’s why you should work with Hastings & Hastings:

Long-standing Experience: Hastings & Hastings boasts over 40 years of dedication to helping those injured in Arizona. No matter the extent of your injuries, our commitment remains unchanged, and we will do everything we can to advocate for your rights.

Expertise and Skill: Our team has over 90 years of combined legal experience, demonstrating a level of knowledge that can be instrumental in handling your case effectively. 

Free Initial Consultation With a Lawyer: We understand the financial strain accidents can bring, which is why we always offer an initial discussion absolutely free of charge, conducted by experienced and licensed Arizona personal injury attorneys who can provide critical direction for your claim.

Trial Readiness: If needed, our firm possesses the resources and experience needed to take your case all the way to trial, ensuring that your rights are defended in and outside the courtroom. You can have confidence in the fact that we have years of trial experience under our belts.

With Hastings & Hastings at your side, rest assured that you are in capable hands during every step of the recovery process after an accident involving an Uber or Lyft.

How an Attorney Can Help With an Uber or Lyft Accident Claim

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In the aftermath of an accident involving a rideshare company like Uber or Lyft, having an attorney can significantly elevate your chances of navigating the claim process successfully and securing adequate compensation. Here’s how:

Understanding Complex Insurance Policies: Rideshare companies operate under intricate insurance structures that combine commercial and personal insurance policies. Attorneys are proficient in untangling these complexities to determine when and how you’re covered.

Determining Liability: Properly identifying all responsible parties is pivotal to maximizing your compensation. This could include not just the rideshare driver, but also potentially Uber or Lyft itself, as well as any other involved vehicles whose actions contributed to the accident.

Gathering Evidence: Building a strong case requires strong evidence – this could include collecting the ridesharing driver’s activity log, accident reports, statements from witnesses, and available video footage, for example. 

Negotiating with Insurance Companies: Equipped with years of experience in handling insurance claims, attorneys know how to contend against insurance adjusters’ tactics. They work meticulously on your behalf during negotiations to ensure you receive a settlement that accurately reflects your losses.

Calculating Damages: Having an understanding of both present and projected future losses, attorneys can estimate the scope of your damages. This includes not just immediate expenses like medical bills but also evaluates lost earnings, pain and suffering, as well as the cost for any ongoing rehabilitation that might be needed. Their goal is to ensure that any settlement or judgment accurately compensates for the full extent of your injuries.

Filing a Lawsuit if Necessary: If negotiations are unable to yield a satisfactory outcome, an attorney can escalate matters by filing a lawsuit on your behalf. From start to finish in the legal proceedings, they will advocate zealously for you, ensuring that your side is presented in a way that gives you the best chance of achieving a fair outcome. 

Ultimately, having solid legal counsel can make all the difference in achieving a fair and efficient resolution to your claim.

What Happens If You’re Injured?

Just because you called for an Uber or Lyft doesn’t mean that you have someone who is an expert driver. And even if they have a lot of driving experience and a great rating, accidents happen. When accidents happen, injuries are often included. So, what happens if you’re injured in an Uber or Lyft accident?

While rideshare drivers are required to have their own insurance policies, they have coverage provided by Uber or Lyft when driving for the platform. This means that the amount of insurance coverage available depends on the activity that the rideshare driver was engaged in during the accident. If the driver was carrying a passenger or actively looking for one when the accident occurred, the accident and injury coverage is treated differently than if they weren’t. If the app is off, they are more than likely only covered by their personal car insurance policy. It’s crucial that you have a Phoenix car accident attorney who can help you discover and ensure that the proper evidence is used so you get the compensation for your injuries you deserve.

This, among other reasons, makes rideshare claims extremely complex and, often, frustrating for accident victims. However, an experienced Phoenix Uber and Lyft accident lawyer can take over the claims process and fight for a full and fair recovery.

Phoenix Uber & Lyft Accident Lawyer

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Who Is Negligent In a Phoenix Uber or Lyft Accident?

After the accident, who is the negligent party? Sometimes, there can be more than one person who is negligent. It may or may not be the Uber or Lyft driver that holds some or all of the negligence that caused your injuries. Other potential parties who may be liable include and may not be limited to:

  • Lyft or Uber
  • The manufacturer of the vehicle if it is defective
  • The manufacturer of defective vehicle parts
  • Other vehicle passengers
  • Cyclists or pedestrians who did not follow the law
  • Local government if there were street maintenance issues and proper signs weren’t displayed

Determining fault in a Phoenix Uber or Lyft accident can be confusing since there can be multiple defendants and insurance companies involved. Partner with an experienced and established rideshare accident attorney in Phoenix who can help you. Schedule your free consultation with Hastings & Hastings now.

What Happens if You’re Partially Responsible For The Accident?

In Arizona, if you are involved in a rideshare accident with an Uber or Lyft vehicle and found to be partially at fault, it could influence the compensation amount you can obtain from your lawsuit. This is due to what’s referred to as pure comparative negligence.

This means that even if you are partially responsible for the accident, you can still pursue damages. However, your recoverable compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault if your claim ends up going to trial.

12-2505. Comparative negligence; definition

  1. The defense of contributory negligence or of assumption of risk is in all cases a question of fact and shall at all times be left to the jury. If the jury applies either defense, the claimant’s action is not barred, but the full damages shall be reduced in proportion to the relative degree of the claimant’s fault which is a proximate cause of the injury or death, if any. There is no right to comparative negligence in favor of any claimant who has intentionally, wilfully or wantonly caused or contributed to the injury or wrongful death.

For example, imagine a situation where it’s determined that you’re 30% at fault for an Uber or Lyft related accident due to speeding, and the total damage amounted to $100,000. Under pure comparative negligence rules, your recoverable damages would be reduced by 30%, leaving you eligible to receive $70,000.

Recoverable Damages in an Uber or Lyft Accident

In the event of an accident involving Uber or Lyft, understanding recoverable damages is crucial for anyone seeking compensation. These damages are categorized into three main types: economic, non-economic, and punitive.

Economic Damages

These refer to quantifiable financial losses that have occurred as a direct result of the accident. Economic damages include medical bills for treatment related to injuries sustained in the crash, lost wages if you’ve had to take time off work, and potential future earnings lost due to ongoing disability or incapacitation resulting from your injuries. Additionally, if there was damage to personal property (like your vehicle), those repair or replacement costs also fall under economic damages.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-Economic damages cover losses that aren’t as easily quantifiable. This includes pain and suffering due to physical and emotional distress from the accident, loss of enjoyment of life if you’re no longer able to engage in hobbies or activities you once enjoyed, and even loss of companionship if your relationships are affected by your injuries.

Punitive Damages

In rare cases, punitive damages can be awarded. These are not intended to compensate for a particular loss but rather to punish the defendant for conduct that is especially harmful, reckless, or egregious. Achieving a punitive damage award in Arizona requires evidence that the defendant acted with “an evil hand and evil mind.”

To establish an evil mind requires clear and convincing evidence that the defendant’s actions either (1) intended to cause harm, (2) were motivated by spite, or (3) were outrageous, creating a “substantial risk of tremendous harm to others…. Court reiterated that to be entitled to punitive damages, a plaintiff must establish that the defendant knew, or intentionally disregarded, facts that created an unreasonable risk of physical harm—a risk substantially greater than that necessary to make his or her conduct negligent or even grossly negligent—and consciously disregarded that risk.

In Arizona, this is an incredibly high standard, making punitive damages in negligence cases relatively rare.

Deadline For Filing an Uber or Lyft Accident Lawsuit in Arizona

The statute of limitations for filing an Uber or Lyft accident lawsuit in Arizona is typically two years following the accident. This means if you don’t initiate the lawsuit within two years, you will miss out on the chance to obtain compensation through a lawsuit. 

12-542. Injury to person; injury when death ensues; injury to property; conversion of property; forcible entry and forcible detainer; two year limitation

Except as provided in section 12-551 there shall be commenced and prosecuted within two years after the cause of action accrues, and not afterward, the following actions:

  1. For injuries done to the person of another including causes of action for medical malpractice as defined in section 12-561.
  1. For injuries done to the person of another when death ensues from such injuries, which action shall be considered as accruing at the death of the party injured.

Exceptions To The Statute of Limitations

Despite the generally fixed two-year time frame for filing an Uber or Lyft accident lawsuit in Arizona, some exceptions can impact this deadline, including:

Government Entities: If government officials/entities are somehow partially liable for your accident – like due to road maintenance issues or if a government employee was driving another vehicle and was partially responsible for the accident – you will need to file a notice of claim within 180 days of the accident. 

Persons who have claims against a public entity, public school or a public employee shall file claims with the person or persons authorized to accept service for the public entity, public school or public employee as set forth in the Arizona rules of civil procedure within one hundred eighty days after the cause of action accrues. 

If your notice of claim is denied, you have a maximum of one year to file a lawsuit against a government entity. 

Minors: Minors do not typically have the legal ability to initiate lawsuits themselves. Ideally a parent or guardian oversees this course of action and files on their behalf. However, if this doesn’t happen, the minor typically has until their 20th birthday to file a lawsuit.

Discovery Rule: In some cases, it might be impossible to recognize an injury has occurred right away. Under the discovery rule, the statute of limitations may only begin when you discover or reasonably should have discovered your injuries arising from another party’s negligence. 

Each situation is unique, making it essential to contact a lawyer as soon as possible.

Schedule a Free Consultation With a Phoenix Rideshare Accident Attorney

You don’t have to fight for compensation alone if you’re a victim who was involved in a Phoenix Uber or Lyft accident. Hastings & Hastings has an experienced team of attorneys ready to help you. We represent people just like you and get our clients the compensation they deserve. To learn more, schedule your free case review.