Whаt іѕ Lyft?
Formed in 2012, by entrepreneurs from San Francisco – Logan Green and John Zimmer – Lyft has grown into one of the largest transportation networks in the United States. Coverage now includes over thirty states and Washington D.C., totaling almost 300 cities—a large growth from one city five years ago. It is estimated that over 18 million rides a month are provided through Lyft’s services.
To use Lyft, users must download the app onto their iPhone or android smartphone and register for an account. Once registered, they are then able to request a ride and make payments right from their mobile device, ensuring that the process is efficient and fair to both parties involved—the drivers and the passengers.
As of now, there are four available options when scheduling a ride with Lyft:
- Lyft: Passenger vehicle with up to 4 seats—nationwide
- Lyft Line: Ride-sharing service that allows passengers to share a vehicle, if the destinations are close, as well as the cost—select cities only
- Lyft Plus: Passenger vehicles with up to 6 seats—nationwide
- Lyft Premier: Luxury passenger vehicle—select cities only
With as many options as Lyft offers and as many cities as they currently have drivers located in, it is no surprise their numbers are as high as they are. With almost 230 million rides a year, one can’t help but wonder how safe the back seat of a Lyft truly is.
Lyft drivers are no different than other drivers in the sense that they are equally susceptible to distracted operation or the inevitable possibility of a simple mistake turning into a much larger problem. No matter how practiced or careful a person may be, there is always the potential for something to go wrong.
To drive for Lyft, potential employees must meet certain requirements mandated by the organization. As a company, there is an expectation that the car to be driven must be of a certain year or newer; however, certain cities require that cars are manufactured more recently than the standard 2004—2009 in New Orleans, for instance. Some of the more obvious requirements are that a car must pass inspection and the driver a year’s experience driving in the U.S. as well as the proper driving licensure for the respective state. The driver must have state plates with current registration, a smartphone capable of using the Lyft app, and be at least 21 years old. Additionally, Lyft completes background checks and inspects their driver’s records utilizing the DMV. Therefore, through this process, Lyft can eliminate drivers who do not have a proven record of safe driving and may create liability issues later down the road.
Ride sharing platforms, due mostly to their vast networking and reliability on personal vehicles, have insurance that covers accidents. This is included for all Lyft drivers, regardless of the option, and covers up to $1,000,000. Each driver is also required to have coverage on their vehicle in addition to the basic coverage that Lyft provides universally. In most cases, Lyft’s insurance policies will cover damage to the driver’s vehicle or the other car involved in a collision, as well as medical bills for injuries sustained by either party.
Determining liability in the case of an accident involving a Lyft driver may be confusing. Because most ridesharing companies utilize their drivers as contractors as opposed to employees, the matter is not black and white as would be the case otherwise, but instead an issue oftentimes requiring clarification. Due to any number of circumstances—the driver being “on the clock” for instance—the responsibility when viewed from a legal standpoint, may vary from case to case and involve the driver, Lyft, or some combination of both entities.
Your Next Steps
Being in a car accident can mean pain, disorientation, and an unexpected interruption of your normal life. When this happens, your first instinct may not be to complicate the concern further by determining what actions to take next, but, in some instances, you only have so much time to take such actions. If you are involved in a Lyft accident, you may hold eligibility for such compensations as:
- Lost wages
- Medical bills
- Physical pain
- Home healthcare
- Diminished quality of life
- Mental anguish
You should be compensated fairly and receive everything you deserve. Some larger companies may try to take advantage of you, realizing that a quick and effortless settlement may satisfy you, even momentarily. Don’t settle for their games and unfair compensation. Call an attorney today.
How Lemberg Law Can Help
The attorneys at Lemberg Law have only your best interest in mind. We know you work hard and that victims of all accidents need compassion and patience, not to be treated like a number. We have experience with Lyft accidents and want to help you not only return to your life, but do so with the monetary compensation you deserve for your hardship. Let us advocate for you! Call 475-277-2200 now for a free case review. We’re here to help.