Michigan Uber Accident: What You Need To Know
Knowing your legal rights after a Michigan Uber accident is essential to getting the compensation and benefits you are legally entitled to. Both Uber drivers and passengers involved in a crash can recover No-Fault benefits. Uber passengers can also recover pain and suffering compensation from Uber if their driver causes a crash. Both the Uber driver and passengers can sue an at-fault driver of another vehicle if they are at-fault in causing a crash.
As an automobile crash attorney, helping people who have been hurt in a crash with a rideshare vehicle is becoming more common as rideshare car services have exploded in recent years. Uber and rideshare litigation is also an area of law that I have spoken about at legal seminars to other attorneys. Below I will review your legal rights and how the law affects these legal rights when you are involved in an Michigan Uber accident.
What should you do after a Michigan Uber accident?
Here is my advice about what to do after a crash:
- You must make a police report • Seek medical treatment immediately if you are hurting. • Report ALL injuries to first responders and emergency room personnel and follow-up with your primary doctor
- Notify your insurance company immediately and file a No-Fault insurance application for benefits
- Check your auto insurance policy for very specific notice requirements – certain types of automobile crashes, such as hit and run crashes, may have contractually shortened time limitations that you must comply with.
Following these initial steps will help you to preserve your legal rights if your pain does not shortly go away or if your injuries continue to become progressively worse. They will also help you in the short-run from making any serious mistakes that can derail your ability to file a lawsuit or your ability to collect No-Fault PIP benefits.
If you were an Uber driver or an Uber passenger and you were in a crash with an Uber vehicle, then you may be entitled to recover No-Fault PIP benefits to pay for your medical expenses and lost wages (if your injuries prevent you from returning to work), mileage and transportation costs for traveling to and from your medical appointments as well as household replacement services and attendant care benefits.
To preserve your right to recover No-Fault benefits after a Michigan Uber accident, you must file an application for No-Fault benefits – which is also called your “written notice of injury” – with the responsible car insurance company within one (1) year after the crash. (MCL 500.3145(1) and (4)) If you fail to file your application on time – within ONE YEAR from the date of your automobile crash – then you will forever lose any benefits to which you might be entitled.
Uber driver’s No-Fault Insurance rights after an Uber accident
An Uber driver who is driving his or her own “personal vehicle” and is injured in a Michigan Uber accident (while on-call for Uber or while transporting a passenger) will receive No-Fault benefits to cover medical expenses and lost wages through the auto insurance company that covers his or her vehicle. (MCL 500.3114(2) and (9)(b))
An Uber driver must have a valid No-Fault auto insurance policy in effect whenever he or she is on the job with Uber, whether the driver is available to transport a passenger or whether the driver is actively transporting a passenger. (MCL 257.518b(1)(a)(ii) and (1)(b)(ii); 257.2123(2)(b) and (3)(b))
Uber passenger’s No-Fault insurance rights
A passenger who is involved in a Michigan Uber accident will recover No-Fault benefits through: (1) his or her own policy; (2) the policy of spouse or resident relative; or (3) the policy covering the Uber vehicle if coverage is not available “under any other policy.” (MCL 3114(1) and (2)(g))
Limits on No-Fault benefits
After a Michigan Uber accident, the Uber driver’s and the Uber passenger’s No-Fault medical coverage will be limited by whatever No-Fault PIP medical benefits coverage level was selected in the policy through which he or she is claiming No-Fault benefits. (MCL 500.3107c(5))
The No-Fault PIP medical benefits coverage levels available include: (1) $50,000 for drivers on Medicaid; (2) $250,000; (3) $500,000; and (4) unlimited. (MCL 500.3107c(1)(a))
Significantly, if Uber is the “named insured” on a policy, then the only coverage levels available are $250,000, $500,000 and unlimited. (MCL 500.3107c(7))
Suing for pain and suffering compensation
If you were injured by an at-fault Uber driver in an Michigan Uber accident – either as an Uber passenger or an occupant of another vehicle, a bicyclist, a pedestrian or motorcyclist – you may have a case for pain and suffering damages as well as excess medical expenses and excess lost wages.
To succeed with a pain and suffering compensation case after an Uber in Michigan, you must be able to show that you have suffered a “serious impairment of body function” or permanent serious disfigurement.
The statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit for pain and suffering compensation as well as excess medical expenses and excess lost wages is three years after the date of the crash. (MCL 600.5805(2))
When an Uber driver is at-fault for causing a crash, he or she will have liability coverage that will pay for the pain and suffering compensation, excess medical expenses and excess lost wages that he or she is legally liable for.
Here is the law for Uber liability coverage if you’ve been involved in a crash:
- When an Uber driver is on-call and is available to transport a passenger (but is not actually transporting a passenger), then the minimum liability coverage that the Uber driver must have in effect is “$50,000.00 per person for death or bodily injury” and “$100,000.00 per incident for death or bodily injury.” (MCL 257.518b(1)(a)(i); 257.2123(2)(a))
- When an Uber driver is actually transporting an Uber passenger, then the minimum liability coverage that the Uber driver must have in effect is a “combined single limit of $1,000,000.00 for all bodily injury or property damage.” (MCL 257.518b(1)(b)(i); 257.2123(3)(a))
Need help after a Michigan Uber Accident?
If you have been injured in an Uber accident and would like to speak with an experienced lawyer, call toll-free anytime 24/7 at (800) 777-0028 for a free consultation with one of our attorneys. You can also get help from an experienced attorney by emailing [email protected] or you can use the chat feature on our website.