People who use Uber and other ride sharing services like Lyft pay for rides because they expect to reach their destinations safely. However, because these are merely cars on the road, they are subjected to the same dangers as every other driver. Accidents do still frequently occur and they can result in serious injuries to the driver or passengers.

A fatal accident involving an Uber driver was covered by local news networks in South Florida.

Uber driver dies in South Florida

A 37 year old male Uber employee was driving a white Nissan Altima with a passenger east along Commercial Boulevard in Oakland Park. Another vehicle was crossing a nearby intersection where there were also train tracks at a high rate of speed. This vehicle went airborne as it crossed the tracks and lost control before colliding with the white Altima. There was enough force from the accident to separate the engine from the speeding vehicle and witnesses reported separated car batteries and other parts scattered along the road in the area where the crash occurred. Another Acura in the area was also affected by the accident, but the driver appeared to be uninjured. Paramedics from Oakland Park Fire Rescue were also on the scene to transport the victims to the local hospital.

The driver of the Altima was pronounced dead shortly afterward, while his passenger and the driver of the other vehicle both sustained serious injuries.

The area where the accident occurred is about halfway between Miami and West Palm Beach in Broward County.

Suing Uber or Lyft

When a car being used for a ride sharing service is involved in an accident, they can also be held responsible for some of the damages that are associated with their drivers. When a driver is working and transporting customers, the employer is also liable for any problems that occur and they can be joined as a party in a related lawsuit.

The process for getting paid from a ride sharing company after an accident can be complex, which is why legal help is recommended. There are special kinds of insurance policies that cover these kinds of accidents, and the requirements for making claims or following up after an accident may be slightly different than after other accidents. It is still important to obtain the information of all drivers involved and contact the police to file an accident report. The investigation conducted at the scene of the accident by law enforcement may also become important at a later time.

Lawsuits related to cases involving fatalities

Another possibility in the story above is that the driver’s family can bring an action against Uber with the help of an attorney in a wrongful death lawsuit. This is a special kind of tort law case that allows certain surviving family members to bring a lawsuit against the individual or business that is responsible for their relative’s death. Because the driver was working while he was killed, his employer will have to share some of the fault in addition to the other driver that caused the accident.

Florida’s wrongful death laws

The Florida Wrongful Death Statute states that an estate of a dead person can bring a civil action against the party responsible for the death through an intentional act, negligence, or breach of contract. Almost all lawsuits involving car accidents will be treated as negligence actions. When the representative of the estate brings the lawsuit, the only family members that are allowed to collect are spouses, parents, children, or a blood or adopted relative who was entirely dependent on the deceased person. Outside of these categories, no one else is allowed to claim an interest in the damages awarded after a wrongful death case. The statute of limitations is also much more strict in these kinds of cases, as the lawsuit must initially be filed within two years of the date that the death occurred. Waiting any longer will prevent the case from going forward.

How much is a ride sharing accident worth to a victim or their family?

Like many other legal questions, the answer is that it depends. Usually accidents that involve serious injuries or death can result in larger claims as the victim is affected for the rest of their life and has to deal with things like diminished earning capacity, and large medical bills. The family of a deceased person will also have to deal with funeral expenses and other related issues. An accident attorney can give a general idea about the value of an accident after learning some basic information.

Talk to a local accident attorney in Palm Beach County

To speak with an expert lawyer about accidents that involve ride sharing services, contact Smith and Vanture. They have been helping injured clients in the West Palm Beach area for years.