Need an Injury Attorney for an Uber/Ridesharing Accident in Virginia?
Utilizing the services of ridesharing apps can give you a great experience, especially when you are unable to drive yourself somewhere. Uber did not have the best start in Virginia, where its services were initially denied. In 2014, the Department of Motor Vehicles sent out a cease and desist letter to the company saying that they were opposed to the service operating in Virginia and would be handing out fines to drivers who were driving without proper licensing to take action. However, in 2016, the Governor signed legislation that would allow the company to operate within the state. This was wonderful news for everybody who could use the company’s services, and good news for every other ridesharing service to arrive within the state.
Though Uber and many other ridesharing services can be great ways to navigate from place to place when you cannot drive yourself, there have been questions related to how cases should be handled when a rider is injured in one of these accidents. You may not be as protected as you would like to be if you utilize the services of Uber or another ridesharing service within the state, and we would like to open your eyes to these realities. How can you be compensated when you are left with injuries from one of these specialized accidents and don’t know where to turn?
An Independent Contractor or an Employee?
One of the most important questions you will ask in your case is: Is the driver an actual employee or are they an independent contractor? This is an important distinction to be to make because if the driver is an independent contractor and is not an employee of the company, you will probably recover damages from the driver instead of the company. If the driver is an employee, you may recover damages through the actual company, which will mean that you may have better protections or be able to receive a higher compensation. Uber, like many other ridesharing companies in different states, considers their drivers to be “independent contractors,” so you will probably not be able to hold that company liable.
However, despite these circumstances, drivers are still expected to abide by safety measures according to the company, and Uber reserves the right to fire contractors who have an adverse driving record. Uber and many other companies have adopted protections for riders, however. They carry large insurance policies that can protect passengers in their time of need. This means that, even when a company denies liability, you could still be covered by the driver’s extensive insurance policy, which could cover $1 million in damages. You may think this is a lot; however, many serious accidents go well over this with hospital stays, rehabilitation, and more related to your accident. You should always be prepared for any scenario after you have been injured.
Have you been involved in a ridesharing accident and want to know whether or not you will be able to get compensated by the driver or the company? We can help you in your time of need. Riders should always protect their rights and speak to an attorney as soon as possible.