If you live in one of Ohio’s larger cities, it’s more than likely you’ve hailed an Uber or Lyft at some point. While rideshare services are useful, accidents can result in serious injuries and long-term consequences. That’s where our Ohio rideshare accident lawyers come in. If you’ve been involved in an Uber or Lyft accident in Ohio, it likely occurred in one of the following cities:
- Bowling Green
Even if your crash happened elsewhere, we’re here for you. Our attorneys understand the challenges of pursuing an injury claim against a rideshare company or driver, and we’re here to help you pursue a claim that gets you the monetary recovery you need to move forward. Once we’ve determined you have a viable claim, we’ll explain the rights and regulations that apply to your situation.
Rideshare Laws in Ohio
While rideshare services have been available in Ohio for well over a decade, regulations weren’t put into place until late 2015. House Bill 237 allows the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) to regulate all ridesharing companies within the state, including Uber and Lyft. The bill, which officially went into effect on March 21, 2016, implemented the following laws:
- Rideshare companies must obtain a $5,000 permit from PUCO to use a digital network to prearrange rides between riders and drivers.
- Rideshare companies have to disclose how fares are calculated, provide riders with a receipt, conduct background checks on drivers, and maintain those records for a minimum of two years.
- Rideshare companies must establish non-discrimination policies, accommodate service animals, and provide wheelchair-accessible vehicles when requested.
- All drivers have to be 19 years or older, pass criminal background checks, and must not have committed any vehicle-related offenses in the last 13 years.
- Drivers are not considered employees unless a written contract between the company and driver says so.
The HB also established minimum levels of commercial auto insurance drivers are required to carry, including $50,000 for bodily injury liability per person, $100,000 for bodily injury liability per accident, and $25,000 for property damage.
How to File a Lawsuit Against Uber or Lyft
While most injury claims against Uber settle through negotiations, that’s not always possible. If you’re in a situation like that, your attorney can determine if your case qualifies for small claims court. To qualify, you typically need to be aware of any monetary limits on small claims cases, and you need to make sure you’re asking for the right type of compensation.
If your attorney determines you are eligible, you can send the rideshare company a demand letter, fill out court forms, file your complaint with the court, serve papers to Uber or Lyft, and prepare for your day in court.
The lawsuit process can significantly extend the life of your claim, but it may be the only way to receive full and fair compensation for your losses.
Determining Value of a Rideshare Accident Claim
Determining the value of an Uber or Lyft accident is similar to valuing any other car accident in that the victim’s losses need to be totaled. With an injury claim, your attorney will separate your losses into two categories: economic and non-economic.
Economic losses are directly calculable, like medical bills, lost wages, and property damage. To total those damages, your lawyer will collect hospital bills, lost wage statements, and additional receipts or documentation that can show what you’ve lost in terms of actual money. Non-economic losses are harder to calculate, as they’re based on more personal losses, like pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. To figure out a fair number for your non-economic damages, your attorney will look at how severely your life has been impacted by the accident, as well as what similar cases have been valued at in the past.
Where the differences in terms of compensation come in have to do with who pays for the losses. With a car accident between two independent drivers, the at-fault party’s insurance company is typically left with the bill. When a rideshare driver is involved, however, the stage at which the accident occurred and the driver’s status with the company will play a role in who is held accountable.
Get Help From the Rideshare Law Group
If you’ve been injured in a crash, our Ohio rideshare accident lawyers are here to help. Not only will we explain your legal rights and options, but we will stand by your side if you choose to pursue a claim, so you improve your chances of receiving full and fair compensation for your injuries and other accident-related losses.
The sooner you get in touch with our law firm after your accident, the better your chances will be of pursuing a successful claim. To learn more or get started, schedule a free case evaluation with the Rideshare Law Group today.