Currently in Florida, nature of the employer/employee relationship at transportation networking companies like UBER (uber.com) is unsettled. Uber is, of course, trying to classify the drivers as independent contractors; thus, relieving the business from any responsibility for accidents involving their drivers. This classification will ultimately affect whether UBER shares the responsibility for any injuries that may occur as the result of an accident involving an UBER vehicle.
Until any proposed changes happen, here are the things you must know if you are injured in an accident involving a UBER vehicle.
- Many UBER and other Transportation Network Company drivers have dash cams. Ask for a copy!
- Your UBER driver’s PIP coverage may not cover your injuries.
- As an UBER passenger you may not be able to file a lawsuit.
- If you are injured, you may be out of luck, even though the driver is working for UBER.
- Currently, UBER is NOT mandated to carry Bodily Injury (BI) policy limits. Just like any other driver, there is no required bodily injury coverage. This is very important if the UBER driver causes an accident and hurts someone. Therefore, it is important that you have Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage to cover you in case you are involved in an accident involving an UBER vehicle.
- Independent contractor OR an UBER employee?
- Another issue is whether the UBER drivers are independent contractors or employees of UBER. If he/she is an independent contractor and causes an accident and injures someone, the injured person would not be able to sue the transportation networking company who hired the independent contractor.