Ridesharing is becoming a more important part of legal systems across the country as the rise of new companies like Lyft and Uber change how people perceive ridesharing. These companies made ridesharing more popular than it has ever been, but they raise specific legal questions that need to be resolved. Unfortunately, legal systems are still trying to find ways of addressing all of these concerns that will comply with existing legislation. For anyone in a ridesharing accident, this can be a difficult time to understand what your legal options are.
If you or a loved one were injured in a ridesharing accident, you may be able to take legal action against the person who caused your accident. To make sure, contact a Kansas City ridesharing accident lawyer for legal advice. You can call the offices of Ben Crump Law, PLLC at (800) 598-7557 for a free consultation about your case.
Defining Ridesharing Accident
Ridesharing services have a long history in the United States. They have taken many forms, some of which are still available today. Public transportation, taxis, and bus services are all types of ridesharing services. Companies like Uber use a similar model to taxis but have gained notoriety for their services.
New forms of ridesharing services come with dangers, however. According to an article published in 2018 in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) states that fatigue and sleepiness are inherent safety risks in the ridesharing industry due to drivers working extended hours and driving at nontraditional times. Drivers who work long hours and in the middle of the night are more prone to be in an accident.
A ridesharing accident is any type of accident where a ridesharing vehicle is involved. In a ridesharing accident, victims can either be in the ridesharing vehicle or hit by it. Expenses for services needed for victims’ recovery can result. While the accident investigation and legal processes are handled in a similar way to other types of accidents, there are some concerns over a few parts of the process. The most notable of these is the issue of liability when independent contractors are used as part of a company’s service offerings.
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One of the big issues surrounding ridesharing accidents is the question of liability. In a standard car accident, a negligent driver can be held liable for expenses. In a ridesharing accident, this is not always true.
When new ridesharing companies declared the structure of their companies, they created a liability problem. The drivers for these companies assert that they are employees and should be offered the same protections of other employees, including liability insurance from the company. Alternatively, the companies assert that the drivers are independent contractors and should be responsible for their own liability insurance.
For someone involved in a ridesharing accident, this means that the company can be sued if the drivers are employees, or the driver can be sued if they are not considered employees. This can make a significant difference in a lawsuit, as company liability insurance and limitations on liability are key factors in the outcome.
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Civil lawsuits are filed with the purpose of collecting financial compensation from any liable party for specific expenses. These lawsuits include claims based on the types of compensation that you are looking for. After a car accident, repairing your car and paying your medical expenses are likely to be your two biggest concerns. You can file property damage claims to cover the damage to your car and other pieces of property, and you can file personal injury claims to cover the cost of medical expenses.
There are other types of compensation claims, as well. Lost wages is a common claim, and it covers any pay that you lost for being out of work. The types of compensation that you can claim will depend on what happened as a result of your accident. Document as many expenses as possible so that it will be easier for you and your lawyer to determine which claims need to be filed.
Reasons to Hire a Lawyer
If you were in a ridesharing accident in Kansas City, it might be in your best interest to hire a lawyer to represent you. The laws in Kansas City can be complex to navigate, given the fact that parts of the city are located in two different states. You may need to file the lawsuit under different guidelines and in different court systems, depending on where your accident was. This is especially true regarding the statute of limitations for filing your lawsuit.
A statute of limitations is a legal time limit on how long after an accident you have to file your lawsuit with the court. If you miss the deadline, the other party can have your case dropped before you get to trial. Kansas City law is complicated in this area because there are different statutes of limitations for different states. You will have to work within the guidelines of the statutes of limitations to make sure that your lawsuit is properly handled.
According to Missouri Revised Statutes (RSMo) §516.120, you have five years to file your lawsuit with the Missouri court system. If your accident happened on the Kansas side of the city, you have two years to file your lawsuit, according to Kansas Statutes Annotated (KSA) §60-513. There is a lot of room for error here and you do not want to miss your opportunity to collect compensation by missing the deadline. Improve your chances of successfully filing a lawsuit by discussing your case with a Kansas City ridesharing accident lawyer.
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Contact a Lawyer to Discuss Your Case
Issues surrounding ridesharing accidents can make it intimidating to think about taking legal action. However, it may be in your best interest to do so, given the potential for recovering compensation to help with your finances. It can be a big relief to be able to pay off expenses related to your recovery without having to go into serious debt.
If you or a loved one were injured in a ridesharing accident, you may be able to take legal action against the person responsible for your accident. Contact the office of a Kansas City ridesharing accident lawyer to see what your legal options are. Schedule a free consultation by calling the offices of Ben Crump Law, PLLC at (800) 598-7557 today. We do not shy away from tough cases.