Ridesharing Accidents in Illinois: Springfield Car Accident Lawyers Explain What to Do After a Ridesharing Accident
After a night out, for work, or for special events with your family, one of the best ways to get around is using a ridesharing service. Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing companies have taken up a large share of vehicles for hire in Illinois, as well as throughout the United States. These services offer an easier way to hire a vehicle at the touch of a button, ensuring that your driver uses an appropriate route and is well-rated too. Despite these factors, and many others, as being safety improvements, unfortunately not all rides go as planned. If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a ridesharing accident, the experienced car accident lawyers in Springfield at the Noll Law Office want you to know what to do after a ridesharing accident in Illinois.
These important tips can help you and your family maximize your potential recovery, while also protecting your rights to compensation under the law. That’s because, unfortunately, some defendants and ridesharing companies may not be candid about your options. This may be because a driver is trying to protect his or her right to drive under the ridesharing app, sometimes offering compensation to settle a claim right away – to avoid you filing a report which could affect his or her rights to drive for Uber or Lyft. Other times the ridesharing company will try to hide behind the distinction between employees and independent contractors, denying valid claims for compensation. In either of these circumstances, victims and their families should contact the Noll Law Office to schedule a FREE consultation with their experienced legal team by dialing 217) 414-8889.
Traps to Avoid
Unlike another type of motor vehicle accident, ridesharing accidents contain certain pitfalls to proving a claim. These claims are used by ridesharing companies to avoid liability and their insurance policy, which is often set to at least $1 million. As a result, ridesharing companies are very careful to protect their policies and use a series of tactics to minimize or undermine a claim.
The most obvious is that the ridesharing company will always try to prove that the ride had either not started yet or that the ride had ended. This argument takes advantage of the fact that ridesharing rides take place in a private person’s vehicle. Therefore, the ridesharing company will argue that you and the driver had a private, separate arrangement for a ride. In that instance, you are not using the ridesharing app to arrange and pay for a ride, and therefore the ridesharing company is not responsible for a crash.
Another common argument is that the driver was off the designated route, which could be because the driver is running a personal errand or because a rider asked for a deviation. The ridesharing company will argue that they are not responsible for these side trips, which could even include adding another rider who is not paying under the ridesharing app.
Finally, as with all motor vehicle accidents, the ridesharing company may try to argue that you were not injured in the accident, that you had a pre-existing injury, or that a third-party was really liable to you for a crash – but not them or their driver. These are common motor vehicle accident defenses, as well as many more, that occur in nearly all types of crashes.
Proving Your Case: Here’s What to Do After a Ridesharing Accident in Illinois
Following a ridesharing accident, there are many important steps that you can take to protect your rights to avoid many of the pitfalls and traps that defendants use. This includes protecting yourself against the specific ridesharing accident tricks that companies use to avoid liability and paying out of their $1 million injury policy.
Some of the most important steps to take include the following:
- Take a Screenshot of the Ridesharing App – immediately after an accident, start taking screenshots of your app. This includes the purchase of the ride, the route indicating the ride was still ongoing, and your orders. Also take a photo of anything that still shows the app was engaged and the ride was continuing. That might include taking a photo of your completed order, or taking a photo of your dashboard/main screen. Make sure to take these screenshots as soon as you can – whether or not you believe you are injured. Even a minor accident could have long-term implications to your health, some which are not immediately obvious (such as a back injury).
- If You Are Hurt, Even Minor, Call 911 – anytime you have any type of injury following a ridesharing accident, call 911. This creates an official record through a police report, but will also summon emergency providers who will come to evaluate you. Do not neglect this part of a ridesharing accident.
- Take Photographs of Your Injuries and the Scene – if you are able to after an accident, take photographs of your injuries, the accident scene, signage, debris fields, and anything else that may be helpful to prove a claim. Even if you don’t like a photo or think that it is too dark or too blurry, keep it. Not only do you have certain obligations to preserve all information when litigation is reasonably foreseeable, but an experienced car accident lawyer may be able to review your photos and determine if there is something useful. Taking videos of the accident scene is also helpful too.
- Gather Witness Information and Insurance Data – even if there is law enforcement present, collect witness information and insurance information from the drivers and all other vehicles or witnesses involved. This is the initial information that you will need to file a claim, although your primary goal will be holding the ridesharing company liable.
- Go to the Hospital – if first responders evaluate you and say that you need to go to the hospital, you should go. Although it might be an inconvenience and it might be difficult to do, it could save your life. Minor injuries or minor symptoms, such as a mild headache, could be a sign of a very dangerous injury like a brain bleed. Always have professionals evaluate you and take the appropriate imaging studies, which can all be used to determine the true extent of your injuries. It is also important to explain everything that hurts, even mild aches or pains, because sometimes a little soreness could result in a massive injury requiring surgery (such as a spinal fusion).
- Call the Noll Law Office – instead of jumping right to call the insurance carrier, or instead of answering their calls, contact the experienced ridesharing accident lawyers in Springfield at the Noll Law Office. They understand how ridesharing accident cases can be different than other motor vehicle crashes, and they can help protect your rights to compensation in Illinois.
Still Not Sure What to Do After a Ridesharing Accident in Illinois? Call Us
Unlike some other personal injury law firms, the fifth-generation lawyers at the Noll Law Office handle their cases in-house and do not farm them out to other law firms across Illinois. Their dedicated and personalized approach is what they have built the foundation of their law firm on, focusing on serving their community and the people that live, work, and travel to it. Although there are many other great law firms in Illinois, by adopting this approach the experienced lawyers at the Noll Law Office provide legal services a cut above what other lawyers are doing, especially when factoring in their skills, knowledge, and experience handling cases.
If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a ridesharing accident and are not sure what to do after a ridesharing accident in Illinois, start with calling the Noll Law Office to learn more about how they can help you and your family. Contact them today to schedule a free consultation and case evaluation, with no upfront costs or hidden fees.