Liability in New York City rideshare accidents

Rideshare companies like Lyft and Uber have a foothold in New York City. When the driver has an accident, passengers often end up with questions about who pays their medical bills. 

Review the common scenarios affecting liability in a rideshare accident involving serious injuries. 

Insurance coverage factors

The IRS considers rideshare drivers independent contractors. These drivers must carry insurance to cover accident liability and do not receive coverage through Uber or Lyft. If the driver’s policy rejects a passenger’s claim or if the driver does not have sufficient coverage, the injured passenger can then file a claim with the rideshare company’s supplemental insurance policy. 

The driver can file a claim with his or her personal injury protection policy to obtain medical care right away. If necessary, his or her insurer will seek compensation through the at-fault motorist’s insurance coverage. 

Steps to take after an accident

First, the injured party should call 911 and seek immediate medical attention as needed. Law enforcement will also arrive at the scene to take a report. If possible, the injured person or a friend or family member should take photos and videos of the crash scene. The passenger will also need contact information for the rideshare drivers, other involved drivers, and witnesses on the scene. 

Usually, New York City rideshare passengers do not have a claim against the rideshare company after an accident. However, a person in this situation can sue the driver’s insurance company if they act in bad faith by refusing to pay a valid claim. He or she has three years to file a lawsuit in New York. 

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