Are there insurance coverage disparities in rideshare accidents?

On Behalf of | Nov 30, 2023 | Car accidents

In the bustling city of Virginia Beach, where taxis and rideshare services weave through the streets, the distinctions of insurance coverage are pivotal for both passengers and drivers.

By understanding these differences, you will be aware of how you are covered during your journey. This knowledge helps you make informed decisions and navigate any potential accidents with clarity.

Defining the phases: traditional taxis vs. rideshares

Traditional taxis and rideshare services operate with distinct characteristics. In particular, this concerns the phases of a ride. For taxis, the journey typically begins when a passenger flags down the vehicle or requests curbside pickup. In contrast, rideshare services initiate the ride when a driver accepts a trip request via a mobile app.

Insurance dynamics in rideshare services

Traditional taxi services in Virginia Beach generally maintain commercial auto insurance that covers the vehicle and passengers during the entire ride. On the other hand, rideshare services, such as Uber and Lyft, have distinct coverage phases:

  • App on (driver available): When a rideshare driver has their app on but has not accepted a ride request, the driver typically has limited coverage provided by the rideshare company’s insurance.
  • Waiting for a ride: Once a driver accepts a ride request, a different level of coverage kicks in, offering more extensive protection for both the driver and passengers.
  • During a ride: The highest level of coverage is active when the rideshare is en route to pick up passengers and during the entire duration of the ride.

These differences in insurance coverage at different points of a ride have real effects on what happens if there is an accident. If you are a passenger or driver in a crash, knowing which insurance phase applies can help you determine how much coverage you get. It can also establish what compensation you might be able to receive.

Call for transparency and education

As more people use rideshares regularly, it is crucial to push for clear information and education about insurance, both in regular taxis and rideshares. If there is an accident, knowing the details about insurance can affect how passengers deal with the situation and ask for compensation.

Knowing these details is key to making smart choices. But if an accident happens, it would be wise to consult a lawyer to understand your rights better and get the support you need.