Than Four Combined Decades
Ridesharing, a service that connects passengers with private vehicle drivers via a smartphone application, has become increasingly prevalent in Pensacola, Florida. Ridesharing services are particularly favored for their convenience. With just a few taps on a smartphone, users can request a ride, track the vehicle’s progress, and pay for the service, all within the app. However, as the popularity of ridesharing services in Pensacola has increased, so too have the associated risks.
Accidents involving rideshare vehicles can lead to complicated legal issues due to the distinct nature of rideshare services. Since rideshare drivers are considered independent contractors rather than employees, determining liability in the event of an accident can be complex. There are also questions around insurance coverage, as rideshare drivers need to maintain personal auto insurance, but the coverage also comes from the rideshare companies under certain conditions.
Understanding ridesharing in Pensacola is not just about recognizing its convenience but also understanding the potential risks and legal implications associated with it. This is where the expertise of a Pensacola rideshare accident attorney can be invaluable.
Laws for Rideshare Companies in Pensacola
Florida law has specific provisions for rideshare companies, often referred to as Transportation Network Companies (TNCs). Under Florida Statutes Chapter 627.748, TNCs such as Uber and Lyft are required to obtain a permit and follow regulations. They must also ensure their drivers meet certain criteria, including their age and possessing a valid driver’s license.
Furthermore, rideshare companies must conduct thorough background checks on their drivers, with a focus on driving records and criminal history. The law mandates these checks to ensure the safety and security of passengers.
Insurance Requirements for Rideshare Drivers in Pensacola
Florida law also establishes comprehensive insurance requirements for rideshare drivers. According to the law, when the rideshare app is turned on, but the driver hasn’t accepted a ride request, the driver or the TNC must maintain primary auto insurance that covers at least $50,000 for death and bodily injury per person, $100,000 for death and bodily injury per incident, and $25,000 for property damage.
However, when a ride request is accepted and the passenger is in the vehicle, the coverage significantly increases. During this period, the TNC or the driver must maintain a $1 million coverage for death, bodily injury, and property damage, as well as personal injury protection and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage as required by Florida law.
Determining Liability in Rideshare Accidents
Determining liability in a rideshare accident in Florida can be a complex process due to several potentially involved parties. The independent contractor status of the driver, the rideshare company’s policies, and Florida’s comparative negligence law can all play a part in this process.
The first aspect to consider is the status of the driver at the time of the accident. If the driver was not logged into the rideshare app or was not carrying a passenger, their personal auto insurance would typically cover the accident. However, if the driver was logged into the app and carrying a passenger, the rideshare company’s insurance would likely come into play.
However, liability isn’t automatically attributed to the rideshare driver or company. Florida follows a pure comparative negligence rule, which means that fault can be distributed among all parties involved in an accident, including the passenger, based on their percentage of responsibility. If another driver or a third party caused the accident, they might be held liable.
Given the complexities involved in determining liability in rideshare accidents, consulting a knowledgeable and experienced Pensacola rideshare accident attorney is crucial.
Pensacola Rideshare Accident Damages
When you’re involved in a rideshare accident in Pensacola, the resulting damages can be extensive and multifaceted. They not only encompass the immediate, tangible financial burdens but also account for less obvious, yet equally significant, emotional and physical distress that victims frequently endure.
- Medical Expenses
These can range from the immediate cost of emergency care and hospitalization, to ongoing costs such as physical therapy, rehabilitation, prescription medications, and potentially even long-term care.
- Lost Wages
If your injuries prevent you from returning to work, either temporarily or permanently, the resulting loss of income can be devastating. In severe cases, you may also be compensated for the loss of future earnings if your capacity to work has been permanently impaired.
- Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering is another category of damages, which seeks to compensate for the physical pain and discomfort caused by the accident and subsequent injuries. This category is often more challenging to quantify as it’s subjective and varies significantly among individuals.
- Emotional Distress
Emotional distress damages are designed to compensate for the psychological impact of the accident, such as anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Like pain and suffering, emotional distress is deeply personal and may require expert testimony to quantify.
- Property Damage
This one covers the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle or other personal property damaged in the accident.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a rideshare accident, take the necessary steps immediately, including seeking legal help from a Pensacola rideshare accident law firm.
Consult Our Pensacola Rideshare Accident Lawyer
The intricate process of rideshare accidents, including calculating and claiming these damages can be overwhelming, especially when you’re dealing with the physical and emotional aftermath of an accident. This is where the expertise of a Pensacola rideshare accident lawyer becomes invaluable.
At The Morgan Law Group, our Pensacola rideshare accident attorneys have a profound understanding of the complexities of rideshare accident law. They can accurately estimate the full extent of your damages, including those that might not be immediately apparent. Moreover, they are skilled negotiators, equipped to deal with insurance companies that often aim to minimize their payout.
In the wake of a rideshare accident in Pensacola, you’re not alone. The Morgan Law Group is here to help you navigate the complex legal landscape, advocate on your behalf, and ensure you receive fair compensation.
Contact us today for a free consultation. Let us put our expertise to work for you, seeking the justice and compensation you deserve.