Uber Accident Attorney in Greenville, South Carolina
South Carolina and a Fault-Based System
South Carolina follows a fault-based system. This basically means that in case of a car accident, whoever is at-fault is held liable for damages that any victims incur due to that accident. In most cases, the at-fault driver’s insurance company pays damages to the injured party. If the insurance company refuses to pay and denies such a claim, the injured party can file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver so that they can get compensation.
All residents in South Carolina are required to carry auto insurance. This required coverage has three main components: liability insurance for bodily injury of at least $25,000 per person and $50,000 total for all individuals injured; liability insurance for property damage of at least $25,000; and uninsured motorist coverage/underinsured motorist coverage of $25,000 for property damage, $25,000 for bodily injury per person and $50,000 for bodily injury per accident.
In the event of an accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will pay damages. Ideally, every driver has to carry this insurance, but in reality, there are still many uninsured drivers in South Carolina. They may not be as high as in some other states, but they are sufficient in numbers to cause an issue in case of a car accident.
At-Fault System and Uber Accidents in Greenville SC
Since South Carolina follows the fault system, things can get fairly complicated if the car accident involves an Uber driver. In case the Uber driver gets in a collision with another driver, and if the Uber driver is at fault, then it will be either Uber or the driver’s insurance company that will be held liable. However, in South Carolina, there is also a system of comparative negligence. This means that in case of an accident where more than one party may be responsible, the liability for damages is shared among those involved according to their level of fault. That means if the Uber driver is 40% at fault, he is only responsible for that much damage.
However, if the Uber driver is 100% at fault, then it will be Uber’s responsibility to pay for damages to the injured party.
If Uber’s insurance company determines that it was the driver’s personal negligence that resulted in the accident, then the liability will fall on the driver’s insurance company. If the driver does not have insurance, then the injured party, which could either be another driver, another driver’s passenger or an Uber passenger, can file a personal injury lawsuit to get compensation.
Insurance Companies and Their Interests
It is important to understand that insurance companies claim to offer protection but in fact, when the time comes, they can and they do make the claim approval process very difficult. Under a no-fault system, it is much easier because injured parties can get compensation whether they were at fault or not. Anyone who has incurred damages will be compensated, and the insurance companies will be the ones doing it. However, in a fault-based system, the Uber driver does not always have the Uber policy on which to fall.
If they are at fault – either because of speeding or driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol or distracted driving, they will have to bear the responsibility for their actions. While this may be fair in the eyes of the law, the actual suffering is incurred by the party who suffered bodily injury or property damage. If Uber does not pay up, and the driver’s insurance company also does not cover the driver either because he has no insurance or because his ridesharing business is not part of the policy, the party who is injured can have their claim denied.
There is also another scenario to be considered: If the Uber collision is the fault of the other driver, and if both the Uber driver and an Uber passenger incur injuries, then the insurance company is likely to find reasons to minimize payout. That is because they want to limit their financial exposure and for them to have to pay two injured parties instead of one is costly enough. Things can get even worse if the third party driver is underinsured. The Uber passenger obviously has no coverage, and their payout is completely dependent on either the third party’s insurance company or the Uber driver’s insurance company or Uber.
Since ridesharing is so new, the regulations regarding insurance, passenger rights, and claims are still quite sketchy. It is generally in the interest of the injured party to consult a lawyer if they have been involved in an Uber related accident. Insurance companies will not pay-out without determining who is at fault and the level of fault. This could mean a significant delay for the Uber passenger or any other injured party. They will have to face the challenge of dealing with their injuries as well as their medical bills, property damage, rehabilitation cost and so on.
If you have been in an Uber-related car accident in Greenville SC and you are not sure if your claim will be approved, you should consult a lawyer immediately.
If you are also unaware of what you might be entitled to, it is again a good idea to talk to a lawyer in order to determine how Uber drivers and Uber accidents are handled. Insurance companies can be very difficult to deal with. They are also very good at manipulating the injured parties to settle for an amount much less than their entitlement. When you have been in an accident, and when you have bills piling up, you are in a rush to settle. This could be a mistake. We understand you might be under financial pressure, but that is precisely why it’s important to talk to someone who has experience in dealing with such cases.
Talk to a lawyer, whether you are an Uber passenger, a third party driver, a pedestrian or anyone who happened to be involved in an accident involving an Uber. Call a lawyer today, discuss the specifics of your case and find out what the best possible options could be. This is the only way you can ensure you are adequately compensated.
Contact David Price at 864-271-2636 if you’ve been injured in an Uber accident in Greenville, South Carolina.