Recovering for Injuries Sustained in an Uber or Lyft

Ridesharing is a form of transportation in which the customer connects to an independent driver who is registered on a mobile app.  The customer requests a ride, and the app links up one of the rideshare drivers to the customer.  The company takes a cut of the ride’s overall cost. In Arizona, and elsewhere, ridesharing services (such as Uber and Lyft) have become increasingly common over the years.  Still, despite its ubiquity, many injured plaintiffs are unsure of their rights under the law and how they can secure adequate damages in a rideshare accident scenario (car, truck, etc.).  If you’ve been injured in an accident involving a rideshare vehicle, then you may be entitled to damages, but the dispute may be complicated by a number of issues. Let’s take a peek at some of the basics. Insurance Coverage Whether you are likely to receive damages will depend — in many cases — on the insurance coverage.  In Arizona, rideshare companies such as Uber and Lyft pay for liability insurance coverage of up to $1 million to cover accidents involving their drivers.  This liability insurance may vary depending on the circumstances. For example, suppose that you are riding as a passenger in an Uber when the driver crashes the car.  Given that the driver had already picked you up and was taking you to your destination, you would be entitled to the full $1 million of insurance coverage. Now, if a driver has not yet picked their passenger up, but is […]

Logging Devices Can Help You Successfully Litigate a Truck Accident Claim

Though truck accident claims can be a challenge to litigate, there are a number of unique opportunities available to those who are plaintiffs in such litigation. For example, if you’ve been injured in an accident involving a commercial trucker, then you could be entitled to bring an action for damages against their employer pursuant to vicarious liability principles. Among these various opportunities is the electronic logging device (ELD) that has been federally mandated for commercial drivers who are required to prepare hours-of-service records for their work. Let’s take a closer look. What is an Electronic Logging Device? Recently, federal legislation (that has been in the works since 2012) has come into effect.  The legislation mandates that an ELD be installed for commercial drivers — including truckers — to keep track of various data points that are intended to help manage driver “cheating” and minimize the safety risks typical of the industry, such as over-scheduling.  An ELD keeps track of a driver’s hours logged (and speed), among other data. How does an ELD help? Drivers cannot drive more than 11 hours a day, nor can they work more than 14 hours a day total.  Previously, drivers could “fudge the numbers” on their paper sheets by logging less than they actually worked, thus enabling them to travel a farther distance (so that they can be eligible for compensation bonuses) while remaining within the hourly maximum.  Now, with the ELD system in place, commercial drivers cannot log more than the maximum amount.  If […]

Settlement Should Not Be Your Only Option

If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was caused by the negligence, recklessness, or intentional misconduct of another party, then Arizona law may give you a right of action against the defendant for damages.  As a general rule, most cases end in a settlement — rather than allow a case to proceed all the way through to trial, the defendant will typically negotiate a monetary compromise with the plaintiff. Effective negotiation is critical to successful car accident litigation, but it’s important that your attorney be a capable trial litigator as well.  Each of these skillsets have a significant impact on one another during litigation. Let’s take a closer look. Basics of Settlement Negotiation Settlement negotiations are fundamentally about “uncertainty.”  When you bring a lawsuit against the defendant(s), there is almost always an element of uncertainty.  For example, the defendant may be able to circumvent liability altogether.  Importantly, even if you can strategically corner the defendant and prove that they are liable, there may be uncertainty about the damages amount that you are entitled to receive. Now, this uncertainty has an effect during settlement negotiations, as a settlement is essentially an approximation of the risk to each party (and referenced against the total damages). How does this work? Suppose that you are injured in a car accident and have damages of roughly $100,000.  The defendant cannot avoid liability, but they argue that your damages are only $50,000.  All else being equal, the settlement compromise is likely to hover around […]

Improper Cargo Loading and Truck Accident Liability

Phoenix Truck Accident Lawyer In the realm of motor vehicle accidents, truck accidents are uniquely dangerous — particularly those that involve large trucks that may be loaded with cargo.  Trucks tend to be heavier than other vehicles, and as such, the impact forces in an accident are likely to be much more severe.  The aggregate force of impact can lead to serious (if not catastrophic) injuries or even death. Truck accidents can occur for a number of reasons, but among the more common types of truck accidents are those that are caused by improper cargo loading.  Improper cargo loading involves cargo that is not adequately secured (and is therefore prone to sliding or tumbling in the back of the truck), or cargo that has been placed in such a way that it creates a structural imbalance. Let’s examine this issue more closely. Improper Cargo Loading Can Create a Substantial Rollover Accident Risk Improper cargo loading — whether the cargo has not been secured properly or has been placed in a manner that creates a fundamental weight imbalance — can lead to a rollover accident in many cases, particularly situations where the driver is taking a sharp turn. Drivers may be additionally liable for failing to take into account their cargo load.  For example, if a truck driver is carrying a full load of cargo, they should be careful to slow down when taking turns and shifting lanes so as not to create a rollover accident.  Drivers must be considerate of […]

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