With rideshares such as Uber and Lyft as popular as they are, riders and other drivers on the road need to be aware of what can happen if they are injured in an accident caused by a rideshare driver. In this #LiveFeedReed video, Paul talked about a case Reed & Reed handled when a pizza delivery driver caused injury to a woman in a car accident. We were able to sue the pizza company directly and recover $1,000,000 because the driver was operating in the scope of employment. However, rideshare cases are much more complex. The rideshare companies convinced our Florida legislature to create statues to determine rideshare drivers work essentially as “independent contractors”. Therefore, rideshare companies cannot be sued directly for accidents caused by their drivers. Florida’s non-joinder statute makes these even more complicated for the injured person to get damages.

Listen to Paul and Jason discuss this case on the LiveFeedReed podcast


Florida Rideshare Insurance

If injured due to a rideshare driver accident, there is coverage available. However, according to Florida law you cannot sue the rideshare company directly, you must sue the driver.
Drivers are required by rideshares to carry their own insurance so that is the first avenue. This is not a failsafe, because many drivers do not notify their insurance companies they are driving for a rideshare company, which could allow their insurance company to refuse coverage based on clauses in the contract.

In the event the driver’s insurance is not available, the rideshare companies also have insurance insurance with coverage which pays out in two instances:

  • If the driver had his app switch “active” going to pick up a passenger, the rideshare’s insurance will pay up to $50,000 for an injury.
  • If there is a passenger in the vehicle, the coverage is up to $1,000,000 for an injury.

If the app switch is not on, there is no coverage other than what the driver has individually.

Florida Non-Joinder Statute

Another complication to recovering for an injury caused by a rideshare driver is Florida’s non-joinder statute, which states that, during litigation, the jury cannot know if the driver is covered by insurance, Thus, juries won’t know the rideshare company is involved and may have to eventually pay out. This situation can put a dampener on awards since juries often base the amount based on emotion, feeling more compassion for an individual driver as opposed to a rideshare company.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage

The rideshare situation further drives home the need to have uninsured motorist coverage through your own insurance company since about 24% of motorists in Florida are uninsured. It can also help you in the event of an accident caused by a rideshare, whether you are a passenger or another driver.

Call Us

Reed & Reed has litigated many rideshare injury cases and knows the ins and outs of recovering damages. Contact us if you suffered injuries or lost a loved one in a rideshare accident to learn more about your rights and how to recover damages.