If you are injured in an accident while traveling in an Uber, Lyft, or other rideshare service, you may question whose insurance policy applies. Should you attempt to seek coverage from the rideshare company’s insurance or from the driver’s personal car insurance? The answer will depend on the type of insurance the driver possesses and the status of the driver when the accident occurred. The following article will discuss situations where a rideshare company’s car insurance applies to an accident, as well as situations where a rideshare driver will have to use his own auto insurance after an accident.
When Does the Rideshare Company’s Car Insurance Policy Apply?
In order to determine if the rideshare company’s car insurance applies, you must first determine the status of the rideshare driver at the time of the accident. For example, if the rideshare driver’s app is on and that driver is waiting for a customer to request a ride when an accident occurs, Uber and Lyft both provide the following types of liability coverage for the driver:
- $50,000 per person for bodily injury
- $100,000 per accident for bodily injury
- $25,000 per accident for property damage
Conversely, if the rideshare driver is in the process of transporting a rideshare passenger, or has been assigned a passenger and is on his way to pick up that passenger, Uber and Lyft will provide the following types of coverage if an accident occurs:
- $1,000,000 in third-party liability protection
- Uninsured/underinsured coverage for bodily injuries
- Collision and comprehensive protection (which requires payment of a deductible and is contingent on the driver already possessing some type of collision and comprehensive personal car insurance coverage)
When Does the Driver’s Car Insurance Policy Apply?
If someone is injured in a rideshare accident, another option is to seek coverage directly from the driver’s personal car insurance policy. However, it must be noted that most traditional car insurance policies will only provide compensation if the driver’s rideshare app was not in use at the time of the accident and the driver was considered “off-duty” (which is unlikely if a person was injured within his capacity as a rideshare passenger).
However, even if the driver could show that his rideshare app was off and that he was “off duty” for all intents and purposes at the time of the accident, a passenger may still be able to seek compensation from the driver’s personal car insurance policy in the following two situations:
- The driver possesses a hybrid car insurance policy that provides coverage regardless of whether the policyholder is working as a rideshare driver at the time of the accident. This kind of insurance policy provides coverage regardless of whether the driver intends to use his vehicle for business or personal reasons.
- The driver has a ride-hailing insurance endorsement that can be purchased and added to an existing personal car insurance policy. This kind of extended insurance policy is made specifically for those drivers who drive for ridesharing companies.