St. Louis Hit and Run Car Accident Involving an Uber Driver
Research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that more than one hit and run crash occurs every minute on US roads. In context, these resulted in over 2,000 deaths in 2016, the highest number on record so far.
What Happens When an Uber Driver Is Involved?
Uber drivers benefit from extra auto insurance offered by the company that keeps them, the passengers, and the other drivers safe. If the accident occurs during a ride, then the Uber insurance kicks in, and you have to file a claim with their insurance company.
If it was a regular drive for the driver, then their personal auto insurance, mandatory in Missouri, kicks in. However, if the driver flees the scene, then you really only have one option.
You Must Report the Accident
It’s imperative to call the police right after a hit and run and report this crime. The best time to do it is right at the scene unless you need immediate medical attention. If you file a report, then the police have to investigate and that means contacting Uber to request driver information.
Hit and runs are considered a crime, and if they also result in someone’s death, Missouri classifies it as a Class D felony, in which case the perp may even have to spend some jail time.
If the police find the driver, they will most likely have to face legal consequences. At the same time, you may also file your own insurance claim or suit against the driver.
Is Uber Liable?
Generally, Uber is not liable if their drivers commit a hit and run crime. Their insurance is meant to protect their collaborators under normal ride-sharing circumstances, but when a crime is committed, the insurance policy generally do not apply.
As a result, you likely cannot take action against the company. Uber drivers are not employed but are working as independent contractors.
So What Can You Do?
Unfortunately, this may be a rather bleak situation. If the police do not find the perpetrator, then you most likely have to cover your medical treatment through your personal health insurance. As for any property damages caused by the accident, these most likely have to be covered out of your own pocket.
Reach out to a Lawyer First
If you’ve been the victim of a hit and run, you’re in for a difficult road ahead. Get in touch with a St. Louis car accident lawyer for a free consultation to see what are your best options.
Your lawyer may be able to recommend other courses of action you can take to cover your medical expenses.
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