When you do business with a professional driver in California, you certainly expect that you will not end the interaction in an accident. However, this is not been the experience for many people who have recently patronized the Uber rideshare driving service in the state.
Claims in the Golden State from users of the Uber rideshare service have gone up in recent years, creating a real dilemma for insurance companies as well as for the rideshare company itself. It seems that drivers who are affiliated with the service have been getting into a great deal of trouble both on and off the clock, and it is uncertain why this is the case.
Many of the drivers have been saying that passengers in the rideshare vehicles have been creating untenable demands on them to somehow magically get to a remote location faster than traffic would allow. Because they are supposed to be “professional drivers,” they feel a pressure to perform more efficiently than the average driver would. However, anyone who has faced down the bumper-to-bumper traffic in CA understands exactly what even a professional driver is up against. Sometimes, there is simply no fighting the flow – you simply have to wait your turn.
However, this does not seem to explain the number of drivers who are getting into trouble off the clock. Perhaps they are being monitored more closely by law enforcement officials; it may be that they are simply more apt to get into an accident because of their increased number of hours on the road. However, this would seem to negate the notion of a professional driver, so maybe the company itself has some soul-searching to do when it reevaluates its hiring process.
Many of these professional drivers are protecting themselves by taking advantage of an extra insurance option that is available for people who are employed by a rideshare vehicle. The Insurance Commissioner of CA Dave Jones recently approved an insurance product that is to be offered by Farmers Insurance that fills in a huge gap in most insurance packages. For the most part, a regular insurance package will not cover a driver who is employed by a rideshare company to the extent that a professional driver needs to be protected by insurance coverage.
The minimum requirement for this extra insurance that is now required of rideshare drivers is $50,000. This number is down from $1 million. However, this insurance package only covers drivers while they are riding with a passenger in the vehicle or currently on route to pick up a passenger.
Metromile is another insurance company in the state that offers additional insurance coverage to rideshare drivers who are waiting to pick up a passenger. Combined, these two coverages take some of the ambiguity out of coverage for professional rideshare drivers.
If you have been the victim of an Uber rideshare accident, then you need a California attorney who understands the system. Whether you have the law on your side or not, you will need a reputable and experienced advocate in your corner in order to present your case – you can bet that the other side will. Do not leave your claims to the wind – give an established California attorney a call today.