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Known as the capital of Silicon Valley, San Jose hosts some of the world’s top businesses. Rideshare services, including Lyft, originated amongst the Bay Area’s corporate elite and now dominate the vehicle-for-hire market share. Lyft has eaten away at Uber’s California ride-hailing dominance and currently provides approximately one-third of San Jose rideshares. Its focus on North American demand and driver satisfaction through Lyft California supports an industry-leading consumer satisfaction rating.
Lyft provides a transportation network platform, the Lyft App, connecting available drivers with local ride requests. This network differs from traditional taxi services because almost anyone can drive for Lyft. Applicants only need to pass driving history and criminal background checks. Drivers do not need special licenses to provide for-hire vehicle services. However, they often drive in heavy traffic, bad weather, or through difficult city roads. These factors frequently contribute to serious San Jose Lyft accidents and injuries, but unique liability and insurance laws apply to Lyft collisions in California. To maximize the value of your Lyft accident claims, connect with the dedicated The Ride App Attorneys today.
Most rideshare drivers provide services using their personally-owned vehicles, i.e., sedans and SUVs. Riders frequently occupy the backseats of these cars, which seldom have rear airbags. As such, Lyft passenger injuries often mirror those suffered by rear-seat occupants in traditional motor vehicle accidents. They frequently include the following chronic conditions:
Third parties struck by negligent Lyft drivers – including other vehicle occupants and pedestrians – often suffer from similar accident injuries. These individuals share similar insurance compensation rights as Lyft passengers but often require assistance proving their entitlement to high-value insurance funds.
Lyft’s popularity stems from the cost-effective services offered by its unique business platform. Lyft California does not employ Lyft drivers. Instead, drivers interact with the Lyft application as independent contractors. This distinction seldom bothers users, but it has serious legal implications following Lyft accidents. Personal injury laws do not generally allow injured claimants to recover compensation from corporations for independent contractor negligence.
Only employers have the responsibility – called vicarious liability – to compensate claimants for employee negligence. By making drivers independent contractors, Lyft protects itself from assumed liability for accident injuries. California law (BPC § 7451) permits this legal relationship if Lyft gives drivers complete scheduling and employment freedoms, including the right to work for competitors. Provided Lyft follows these regulations, injured claimants may only recover compensation from the negligent Lyft driver, vehicle owner, or dangerous third parties.
Experienced San Jose ride-app lawyers may hold Lyft accountable if it failed to provide the workplace freedoms necessitated under California’s Protect App-Based Drivers and Services Act (Cal. BPC §§ 7448, et seq.). This legislation also places certain safety responsibilities on rideshare network providers. Accidents resulting in the following public safety violations could support direct claims against Lyft California.
Lyft must conduct local and national criminal background checks on potential drivers under California ride-app laws. Rideshare companies may not permit applicants to utilize their networks if reports reveal:
Under its policies, Lyft must also disqualify applicants based on poor DMV records. Disqualifying records include recent reckless driving or license suspensions, multiple traffic tickets, or hit-and-run convictions. Failure to abide by these public safety guidelines could support negligent hiring claims against Lyft for preventable accidents.
While Lyft drivers do not require special licenses – or even perfect DMV records – the network company must provide road safety training. The law requires at least one class addressing defensive driving techniques, sexual harassment avoidance, and accident prevention. Drivers must satisfactorily complete this course before engaging with Lyft. BPC § 7459 violations may lead to independent corporate liability.
Lyft offers San Jose residents a source of secondary income. As such, many drivers log onto the Lyft app at night or after long work shifts. This schedule often leads to extreme fatigue, similar to that reported by long-haul truck drivers. Sleep-deprived driving can cause intoxication-like symptoms resulting in car accidents. Proposition 22 put safeguards in place to prevent fatigue and drunk driving.
The app-based driver rest regulation requires network companies to log out drivers logged in for more than 12 hours over a 24-hour period. Drivers may not return to Lyft without taking at least a six-hour rest break. Likewise, rideshare companies must immediately respond to drunk or drugged driving complaints by suspending drivers during the investigation period. Accidents caused by intoxicated or fatigued Lyft drivers could result in network company liability if it violated the above provisions.
Over 90% of viable car accident cases settle with liable auto insurers, and Lyft provides drivers and eligible third parties with $1,000,000 in personal injury coverage. This legally mandated policy covers accidents caused by independent Lyft drivers actively providing rideshare services. Consider the following:
Lyft’s insurers commonly deny liability by asserting the driver wasn’t actively engaged in services or didn’t cause the accident. Many injured claimants struggling with mounting medical costs and lost income don’t question this determination. Dedicated San Jose Lyft liability lawyers frequently challenge high-value rideshare insurers to recover needed compensation after devastating car accidents.
Rideshare crash damages mirror those available after conventional car accidents. Insurers make settlement offers based on the claimant’s actual losses. However, these losses include more than medical bills and missed paychecks. Injured claimants may demand damages for the following:
Provided these damages arose from viable accident cases, San Jose claimants might demand up to $1,000,000 in financial payouts from Lyft among additional settlements. Most car accident claims settle for around $30,000, but cases resulting in life-altering disabilities could support policy payouts for claimants represented by reputable ride-app attorneys. Spouses might also qualify for compensation while caring for injured loved ones.
It’s smart to make use of ridesharing services like Uber when enjoying a hassle-free night out with friends or grabbing a ride home after a flight.
Tenny Mirzayan is the best out there. She handled our car accident case, and destroyed the other side. Farmers Insurance offered us $0, and she got us deep into the six figures. She did not let us get pushed around. Thank you!!!
Claimants represented by experienced rideshare attorneys frequently obtain substantially more damages after Lyft accidents. Most clients even recover compensation without any upfront fees or out-of-pocket costs. Families could retain dedicated injury counsel to handle insurance negotiations, appeal unlawful denials, investigate claims, and litigate liability on a contingency fee basis. These delayed fee arrangements mean we don’t get paid unless you recover needed compensation after a Lyft crash.
It costs nothing to speak with our dedicated Lyft liability attorneys at The Ride App Attorneys about your claims. Call our San Jose office today or contact us online for a free Lyft accident consultation.