Ping! The driver connects with a passenger a few blocks away. Hopefully, he’s ready to go. Hopefully, he won’t dictate his own “fastest route.” Hopefully, he’s not wasted.
Four minutes and seven blocks later, BOOM! A heavy impact jolts the Uber car forward after someone smashes into the back. The passenger’s in his seat, clearly confused. A few more seconds go by. He snaps into it, holds his neck and screams, “Look what you did! You’re going to pay for this!”
So, the question becomes, what’s the personal liability here? Is there really any chance this guy can go after the Uber driver? The answer is … not really. LegalRideshare, the only law firm entirely dedicated to rideshare accidents and injuries, explains why.
The driver isn’t at fault for this crash. As such, the at-fault driver’s insurance is “primary.” That means his insurance company will have to pay first for any claims made in relation to the crash (up to the policy limits). The Uber driver’s insurance is “secondary.” It comes into play only if the injured passenger’s damages (medical bills, pain and suffering, etc.) exceed the at-fault driver’s policy limits.
Here, the driver accepted a fare and had a passenger in their car. This means they’re in “period three” and covered by Uber/Lyft’s insurance (up to $1 million). Therefore, even if the at-fault driver has little (or no) coverage, the rideshare company’s policy will take over.
Let’s switch up the facts. Let’s say the Uber driver caused the crash and rear-ended another driver. The passenger is hurt and threatens to sue.
In actuality, not much changes. Because the Uber driver is the at-fault driver, their insurance is “primary.” They’re still in period three, meaning Uber/Lyft’s company takes over. That insurance will cover damages up to its limits (again, $1 million). As such, there’s plenty of coverage and they need not worry about their assets in most scenarios.
The bottom line: After a crash, stay calm, call the police to investigate and report the incident to Uber/Lyft.