DeKalb County Rideshare Accident Lawyers

DeKalb County Rideshare Accident Lawyers

Any vehicle accident has the potential to be a life-changing experience for those involved, and it’s natural for any accident victim to feel distress and uncertainty in the initial aftermath of their experience. Some vehicle accident cases are relatively straightforward, and victims are able to recover their losses with minimal frustration. However, others are not so fortunate and face extremely complex legal proceedings involving difficult insurance claims and other complicating variables.

Experienced Legal Representation for DeKalb County, IL, Rideshare Accident Victims

Over the past several years, rideshare services like Lyft and Uber have become increasingly popular throughout the United States. Many people in DeKalb County rely on these services as accessible alternatives to public transportation and taxi services, but they face the same risks as they would while traveling in any other vehicle. They also face a more complex insurance claim process after a rideshare accident.

Franks Gerkin Ponitz Greeley is a team of experienced DeKalb County personal injury attorneys with years of experience handling a wide range of vehicle accident claims on behalf of clients throughout the area, including those injured in rideshare accidents. While these accidents tend to occur for most of the same reasons as all other vehicle accidents, they often generate more complex legal proceedings for those involved.

Understanding Rideshare Accident Insurance

Lyft and Uber both carry expansive auto accident insurance that works in different ways depending on the timing of an accident involving one of their drivers. All rideshare drivers are required to maintain their own personal auto insurance policies, and when a driver is not logged into their driver app and/or is using their vehicle for their own purposes, their own auto insurance will come into play if they cause an accident.

Once a rideshare driver has logged into their driver app and marked themselves as available for a passenger’s ride request, the rideshare company’s first level of insurance coverage applies. If an accident occurs, this level of coverage can provide up to $50,000 in bodily injury liability coverage for injuries to a single person, expanded to $100,000 in bodily injury liability coverage for all persons injured in a single accident. Additionally, this level of coverage also provides up to $25,000 in property damage liability coverage that can pay for vehicle repair or replacement costs. Rideshare drivers should remember that this level of coverage functions as third-party liability coverage, and their own auto insurance coverage would be used first to compensate the victim if they caused the accident in question.

The largest tier of insurance coverage provided by Lyft and Uber comes into effect once a driver has accepted a ride request and remains in effect until they drop the passenger off at their destination. This level of coverage includes up to $1 million in third-party liability coverage. Similar to the first tier of coverage, if the rideshare driver caused the accident, their own auto insurance coverage would be exhausted before this level of coverage takes effect. Therefore, rideshare insurance can be used to compensate a rideshare driver harmed by a third party as well as a passenger injured in an accident caused by their rideshare driver.

Why Legal Counsel Is Important for Auto Insurance Claims in DeKalb County

Any auto insurance claim can be difficult to navigate on your own, especially when you are struggling with painful injuries caused by the at-fault driver’s actions. However, when you have an experienced DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney representing you in your recovery efforts, you can focus on your medical needs while your attorney manages your auto insurance claim on your behalf.

An experienced attorney can help you draft your demand letter to the insurance company, carefully reviewing the details of the policy in question to ensure you receive the greatest amount of compensation possible for your claimed damages. In the event you encounter any unfair pushback against your claim from the insurance carrier, your attorney can resolve such issues on your behalf to ensure you receive fair treatment. Unfortunately, some insurance companies prey on the desperation of injured claimants to coerce them into accepting lowball settlement offers.

When you have a DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney representing you, the insurance company representative handling your claim will be less inclined to attempt any bad faith tactics once they notice that you have legal counsel advising you. Additionally, after you have exhausted your recovery options through auto insurance, you can proceed with a personal injury claim against the party who caused your accident if you still have outstanding damages.

Filing Your Personal Injury Case in DeKalb County

If, for any reason, the available auto insurance coverage in play in your case does not fully compensate your losses, you have the right to file a personal injury claim against the party or parties responsible for causing your recent accident. A seasoned DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney is the ideal asset to have in this situation, as they can not only assist you with your auto insurance claim but also help you build your personal injury case to maximize your recovery.

Before you can secure any compensation for your losses, you must accurately identify the liable party or parties who caused your accident. Depending on how your accident happened, this may require gathering physical evidence from the scene of the crash, securing witness statements from those who saw the accident happen, and even consulting expert witnesses who can clarify the most complex details of the incident in question. For example, if there is any dispute regarding liability for a recent rideshare accident, your attorney might consult an accident reconstruction expert who can prove exactly how the crash unfolded, identifying the driver responsible.

After you have clearly proven fault, you must prove the full extent of the damages you sustained to hold the defendant appropriately accountable. Under Illinois personal injury laws, the plaintiff has the right to claim:

  • Medical expenses. When a defendant has physically injured you in any measure, they are liable for the cost of any and all the medical care you require to reach maximum medical improvement. This includes any immediate medical treatment costs as well as ongoing medical costs if you suffered a serious injury that demands ongoing rehabilitative care.
  • Lost income. Your accident may have left you unable to work for an extended period of time, and the defendant is liable for the income you were unable to earn because of their actions. Similar to medical expenses, you have the right to claim immediate and future lost income. If the defendant caused a serious injury that diminishes your ability to work and earn income, they are responsible for the future income you are no longer able to earn.
  • Property damage. Available auto insurance may cover your vehicle repair costs, but any property losses not covered by auto insurance can be included as economic damages in your personal injury case.

After your DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney helps you calculate the full range of your immediate and future economic damages resulting from the accident in question, you might discover that your personal injury claim is worth much more than you initially estimated. However, you also have the right to claim pain and suffering compensation that increases your total case award substantially.

Maximizing Recovery in a Personal Injury Claim

Pain and suffering can be calculated in one of two ways. First is the multiplier method, generally used whenever a plaintiff has suffered severe injuries that impose some level of permanent harm. The attorney multiplies the plaintiff’s total economic damages by a factor of one to five to reflect the severity of their condition and seeks this amount in pain and suffering compensation. Second is the “per diem” method, generally used when a plaintiff is expected to fully recover from their injuries in the near future. This awards a set amount each day until the plaintiff reaches full recovery.

Illinois also upholds a modified comparative negligence law that comes into play in any personal injury case in which the plaintiff bears partial liability for their claimed damages. Under the modified comparative negligence standard, as long as the plaintiff is less than 50% at fault, they can still recover damages from the defendant. However, their fault percentage is how much is deducted from their final case award to reflect their shared liability.

Working with an experienced DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney offers the best chances of success with all of the recovery efforts you must pursue in response to a rideshare accident. These cases tend to generate highly contested insurance disputes as well as personal injury proceedings that the average person may not know how to handle on their own. The team of attorneys at Franks Gerkin Ponitz Greeley can provide the compassionate and detail-oriented legal representation necessary for reaching the best possible outcome for your rideshare accident case in DeKalb County.

Rideshare Accidents FAQs

Q: How Do I Maximize My Insurance Claim Settlement After a Rideshare Accident?

A: While the insurance coverage carried by Lyft and Uber may seem expansive, it is unwise to assume that you will automatically qualify to receive the full amount listed in their policy. Insurance carriers tend to look for all the reasons they can find to reduce settlement offers or outright deny claims when they can. Therefore, if you want to have the easiest time with your insurance claim filing process and the highest chance of securing maximum compensation for your damages, it is crucial to have experienced legal representation on your side as soon as possible after your rideshare accident.

Q: Will Hiring an Attorney Help Me Secure a Larger Personal Injury Settlement?

A: An insurance claim may only be one aspect of your recovery efforts, and you may need to file a personal injury suit against the driver who injured you after you exhaust your available recovery options through insurance. An experienced DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney is the best asset to have if you must file a personal injury claim to seek compensation for the damages that insurance won’t cover. In addition, your attorney can likely identify recovery options you would have overlooked on your own.

Q: How Long Does It Take to Settle an Auto Insurance Claim?

A: If you have an experienced DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney assisting you with your insurance claim, and the defendant’s liability is clear, it may only take a few weeks of negotiations with the insurance company for you to receive your settlement check. However, if you must file a personal injury claim as well, this can take much longer to resolve, and you will need the assistance of an experienced attorney to help you compile your personal injury claim and maximize your total compensation.

Q: How Much Is a Lyft or Uber Accident Worth?

A: If another party is responsible for causing any personal injury, Illinois state law dictates they are liable for the full scope of financial losses they inflicted on you, along with responsibility for your pain and suffering. The exact value of your case can fluctuate significantly based on multiple factors, and it is always best to have reliable legal representation on your side if you want to secure as much compensation as possible for your damages.

Q: Is It Worth Hiring a DeKalb County Rideshare Accident Attorney?

A: If you have any hesitation about hiring a personal injury attorney after a serious accident when it comes to the cost of their representation, Franks Gerkin Ponitz Greeley accepts personal injury clients on a contingency fee basis. This means you only pay attorneys’ fees once we win your case, and your fee is a percentage of the final case award we secure on your behalf. As a result, there is no financial risk to you by hiring our team to represent you, and you are far more likely to maximize your total compensation when you have experienced legal counsel representing you.

Franks Gerkin Ponitz Greeley offers years of professional experience in personal injury law, and we have helped many DeKalb County clients with complex rideshare accident claims. You can rely on our team to guide you through the insurance claim process, and if your settlement isn’t enough to fully compensate your losses, we are prepared to file a personal injury claim on your behalf. Contact our team today and schedule a consultation with a DeKalb County rideshare accident attorney to learn more about your legal options for recovering your losses.

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