“Wheels of Fortune” – or UnderInsured Disaster ?

While professional taxi cabs are required to have a certain minimum amount of liability insurance, what are the requirements for UberX, Sidecar or Lyft ?

  • Cab Competition, Safety & Oversight

Competition in the marketplace is a good thing, but so is safety regulation and oversight. If you are going to use these “alternative ride services,” then you certainly want to check your own motor vehicle insurance policies to make sure that you have adequate coverage in the event of an accident. There is no guarantee that the Uber, Sidecar or Lyft driver has even the $100,000 per person that Virginia cabbies are required to carry. If you are in a crash with an uninsured driver, or a “hit-and-run,” and the UberX, Lyft or SideCar driver has a minimum limits policy like yours, your medical bills might not even get paid. These questions were brought to the fore in today’s Washington Post front page article.

  • Taxicabs do not have to have lots of insurance, & they often do not !
Dulles Flyer and other DC Metro area taxi cabs are required to be licensed and insured, though not for as much as you may think ! Check your Uninsured AND UNDERinsured motorist coverages, as well Medical Payments protection provisions in your own automobile insurance policy, especially if you are going to be using any of the popular ride-share service

Landau has helped clients hit by taxicabs in DC and Virginia, and the limits on their insurance and the fact that they are often separate companies so that there are no assets to pay for the harms if an excess verdict is rendered, means that the injured victims may get less than full compensation for their losses. Thus, “Driving for Dollars” may mean short-term savings for the ridership and catastrophic losses for those unlucky enough to be in a crash while a passenger in these ride-share services. Landau notes,

“Users of these ‘ride-share services’ should check their own Uninsured and UNDERinsured motorist protection, as well as their MedPay limits, to make sure that they, and their loved ones, are protected in the event of an accident while riding in a vehicle through one of the online services like Lyft, SideCar and UberX.”

If you or someone you know or care for has been injured as the result of a car, taxi, truck, bicycle or motorcycle crash and there are questions about what laws apply, e-mail or call us at ABRAMS LANDAU, Ltd. (703-796-9555) at once.