Who is responsible for injuries sustained during ridesharing?

Car accidents involving a ridesharing driver may be covered by a company-provided insurance policy, a personal policy or contingent coverage.

Ridesharing apps, such as Uber and Lyft, have become more popular in Ohio in recent years. Some link the increase in popularity of ridesharing with a 16.6 percent decline in car accident fatalities, according to Entrepreneur. While the easy access to designated drivers may be linked with a decrease in DUIs and fatal crashes, there are still risks associated with being out on the road as a passenger in someone else's car. These rideshare drivers can even pose a risk to third parties, such as pedestrians and other vehicle operators. For example, even though fatal crashes have decreased, there is still a possibility of getting in a car wreck.

Company-provided insurance carrier

Most ridesharing companies offer their drivers some type of coverage while they are on the clock. In other words, if there is a passenger in the vehicle, it is likely the company-provided insurance carrier will shoulder at least some of the liability for any personal damage done. Typically, this commercial insurance policy covers the cost of damages done to a passenger or a third party.

Personal insurance carrier

When the driver does not have a passenger, he or she may need to turn to a personal insurance carrier after an accident. Even if drivers have their ridesharing app on, the company-provided insurance agency does not have to cover damages done to third parties or personal property, such as the car being driven. Some personal insurance companies may also shy away from covering vehicles that are being hired out, even when there is not a passenger. This means a person may have to rely on the other driver's insurance coverage, but this only works if the other driver was at fault for the accident.

Some drivers may take out an extra personal policy that does cover vehicles that are hired out. This coverage would help pay for damages done to any third parties while the ridesharing app is turned on and the driver is looking for a passenger.

Contingent liability coverage

Ridesharing companies are aware that personal insurance policies do not always cover car wrecks that take place while the driver is working. For this reason, companies like Lyft and Uber may offer a contingent coverage as well. Usually this type of policy would provide minimal injury liability and property damage coverage for a driver who is working, but has yet to pick up a fare.

Pedestrians, other drivers and passengers all have a risk of getting in an accident involving a rideshare driver in Ohio because of the increased popularity of this type of transportation. If injuries are sustained, it might be helpful to work with an attorney who is familiar with this type of automobile-related personal injury case.