Accidents happen everyday in Los Angeles but figuring out who is to blame when the crash involves a rideshare car or scooter can be confusing. Uber, Lyft, Lime and other companies make a killing off of getting people where they need to go and when a driver plays a role in causing an accident, they also need to pay.
What Should I Do After My Rideshare Accident?
If you were injured by an Uber or Lyft or a negligent scooter driver, it’s important you take a few steps after a crash occurs. Never assume a vehicle in a crash is a private vehicle – check for rideshare stickers or other indicators that the driver may be on the job. In addition:
- Notify law enforcement – wait for them to arrive on the scene and provide as much information as possible to the responding officers to an additional accident report. Verify the report is accurate, and try to make sure the officers speak to everyone involved; not every officer takes a statement before determining liability!
- Remain silent – it’s important not to negotiate with anyone else involved in the collision or simply try to exchange information without waiting for the police; their may give you false information, deny liability, or misrepresent facts. Their story may also change later once they consider the consequences of negligent driving.
- Get contact information from all passengers if you believe any other vehicle is part of a rideshare service like Uber or Lyft – they may be an impartial witness or have different observations from their vantage point.
- Never tell anyone you weren’t injured, you’re “fine” or “okay,” or apologize for the accident. These can be misconstrued to indicate you weren’t injured or that you’re claiming responsibility for the collision.
- Get the driver’s information as well as contact information for any eyewitnesses to the crash.
- If possible, take photographs of the accident scene, any vehicles and bicycles involved, and any evidence at the scene such as skid marks that can help establish what happened. If there are any traffic or surveillance cameras at the scene, an attorney can help you obtain the footage to determine if video of the incident exists.
- Do not give a recorded statement to an insurance company before speaking to an attorney – these companies have the goal of avoiding paying settlements or setting claims as cheaply as possible, so they may twist your words in an effort to deny your claim.
- Contact a skilled Los Angeles personal injury attorney at Walch Law to protect your rights and help you avoid potentially costly missteps in your claim for compensation.
Do I Need to See a Doctor?
Even if you think you weren’t hurt after a collision, you can’t afford to assume anything. Some injuries don’t present symptoms for days after an accident, and for some conditions such as traumatic brain injuries waiting to seek medical evaluation and treatment is fatal. To avoid serious consequences, it’s important you let a doctor determine whether your injured and the severity of your injuries.
Seeking medical attention as soon as possible also allows you to establish you were actually injured and the extent of your damages – official medical documentation can be of great assistance when dealing with a negligent driver, their employer, or an insurance company. Take photos of your injuries if possible and document your physical symptoms in the days after the accident.
Can I Wait to File My Case?
It’s understandable that after a traumatic event like an accident, the idea of making major decisions quickly is overwhelming! Though you don’t have to file immediately, waiting too long to file your case in court can cause you to permanently lose your right to recover damages. In California, you have a statute of limitations – basically a deadline – by which you must file a case with the court to recover for your injuries. Los Angeles personal injury cases, including bicycle, pedestrian and car accidents, must be filed within 2 years of your injury date. Letting the deadline pass means you are statutorily barred forever from pursuing recovery and a court will dismiss any case filed after time expires.
How Much Is My Case Worth?
Every case is different, so the amount of damages you may be able to recover depends on the facts of your particular situation.
Victims injured by another’s negligence may be able to recover for concrete damages including:
- Property damage,
- Medical bills, and
- Lost wages.
It’s also possible to receive an award for more subjective damages like:
- Pain and suffering,
- Permanent disability or disfigurement,
- Mental anguish, and
- Loss of consortium.
In some situations, a negligent party’s conduct is so bad that victims may be awarded additional damages to punish their bad behavior and discourage them from repeating it. These damages can be difficult to establish and are best handled with help from an experienced personal injury lawyer.
Speak to a Top Personal Injury Lawyer Near You
If you or a loved one were hurt in an accident involving Uber or Lyft and a bicyclist, contact the skilled Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorneys at Walch Law. Our team has spent years fighting for victims like you to recover maximum possible compensation for your injuries. We understand the headaches of dealing with large companies and insurers when you’ve just suffered a major trauma, and we’ll deliver comprehensive representation and the best possible results from your unfortunate accident. Let our team use our knowledge and resources to help you get the compensation you deserve. Call us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to schedule your free, confidential, no-obligation case consultation today. The initial review is free, and you pay nothing until we win your case. Let us answer your questions and look out for your best interests starting right now.