Boston Lyft Accident Attorneys
Tenacious representation for victims of rideshare crashes in Massachusetts
Ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft are a popular way to travel in and around Boston. As convenient as they may be, there are serious issues involved with passenger safety when using these services, and that includes obstacles to securing the compensation that you deserve if you are involved in an accident while using a rideshare. If you are involved in a car accident as a Lyft passenger, one of the biggest questions that you may face is determining who is liable for your injuries—the driver, Lyft, or both?
With the widespread media coverage regarding the issue of personal injury liability in ridesharing accidents in recent years, many of these companies have adopted new policies regarding the type of insurance that they offer in the event of a car accident. As a result, if you’re injured as a passenger in a Lyft – or involved in an accident with a Lyft vehicle – the claims process might be more difficult.
However, you don’t need to worry. The seasoned Boston Lyft accident lawyers at Breakstone, White & Gluck are experienced when it comes to ridesharing accidents and are prepared to help you assert your rights to the fullest extent. We’ll advocate and fight for you, working to ensure you secure the maximum financial compensation to which you’re entitled for your injuries and losses. Get in touch with us today.
OVER $300 MILLION
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Common questions from injury clients
How many people use Lyft?
Let’s take a look at some recent statistics about Lyft riders and drivers to get a sense of just how many people are using this rideshare service in Boston and throughout the country:
- Lyft has over 2 million drivers (including Canada)
- Lyft had 18.7 million riders in 2021
- This was a 49% increase from 2020
- Lyft operates in 644 US cities
As you can see, Lyfts are everywhere, and Lyft drivers are everyday people. Drivers don’t need a special license or training to work for a rideshare company, so the risk of being involved in a car accident doesn’t decrease when you hop into the back seat.
What is Lyft’s safety record?
Lyft published their first safety report in 2021, releasing data regarding accidents and safety incidents. For the year 2019, their most current data available, they reported:
- 49 motor vehicle fatalities
- 4 fatal physical assaults
Lyft’s safety report made nationwide headlines more for its startling data on sexual assaults, however. Between 2017 and 2019, the rideshare platform reported over 4,000 incidents of sexual assaults.
Further, Lyft doesn’t reveal the number of car crashes that did not result in fatalities. Per their report:
Each year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) provides data on vehicular fatalities through the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS). Lyft compared its data on motor vehicle fatalities in 2017, 2018 and 2019 with FARS data for each year. To abide by a uniform reporting method, Lyft calculated the rate of fatalities per 100 million Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT). Crashes that did not result in fatalities were excluded so that our data could be directly compared to the FARS dataset.
What are common causes of Boston Lyft accidents?
Like many car accidents, most rideshare accidents happen due to driver negligence. The Boston attorneys at Breakstone, White & Gluck represent clients injured in crashes and collisions caused by:
- Driver intoxication. In 2019, drunk driving killed 110 people in Massachusetts. Lyft has a responsibility to their passengers and to the public-at-large to check a potential worker’s driving record for OUIs – and ensure that record remains clean.
- Drowsy driving. Driving while fatigued is just as dangerous as driving while intoxicated. The Sleep Foundation notes, “After 20 hours of being awake, drowsy drivers are impaired on a level equitable to a 0.08% blood alcohol content.” Because many people drive Lyft as a second job, they may find themselves drowsy behind the wheel.
- Speeding or reckless driving. Lyft drivers make money with every ride they take. Fitting in as many rides as possible in one night can lead to breaking traffic laws, like speeding or driving recklessly for road conditions. Accidents involving high speeds often cause severe or fatal injuries.
- Driving while distracted. Distracted driving includes texting – which is illegal in Massachusetts – but Lyft drivers have a host of other distractions to contend with. Notifications coming through their app, trying to follow their GPS, loud passengers in the backseat, and other issues can all distract a Lyft driver from focusing on the task at hand.
Our legal team can investigate the circumstances of your accident to determine who was at fault, and then work to hold them accountable for your injuries and losses.
How does Lyft’s insurance coverage work?
Lyft drivers are covered by a commercial insurance policy for every ride that they provide through the service. There is also insurance coverage available in the event that the driver is involved in an accident between providing rides and while looking for passengers. While this may sound promising, insurance companies are notorious for playing hardball and for denying legitimate claims from both injured drivers and passengers in order to save money. Having a seasoned Boston Lyft accident attorney on your side can help you put your best case forward.
Insurance issues involving rideshare companies can get complicated quickly. Generally, though, Lyft insurance coverage depends on the driver’s status. If the driver’s:
- App is off, meaning they’re not working, not logged into the app and are traveling around on their own time, their personal car insurance policy is responsible.
- App is on and waiting for a request, their personal car insurance is responsible. However, if it does not cover your medical expenses, Lyft has third-party liability insurance in the amount of:
- $50,000/person for bodily injury
- $100,000/accident for bodily injury
- $25,000/accident for property damage
- App is on and driver is transporting a passenger or en route, Lyft’s insurance is active in the following amounts:
- “At least $1,000,000 for third-party auto liability
- First party coverages, which may include uninsured motorist coverage, underinsured motorist coverage, PIP [and MedPay]
- If a driver obtains comprehensive and collision coverage on their personal auto policy, Lyft then maintains contingent comprehensive & collision coverage up to the actual cash value of the car ($2,500 deductible)”
When we take your case, our Boston lawyers determine which insurance policies should apply and when. We know how to navigate the insurance system and fight to secure the compensation to which you’re entitled. You may only have three years to file your claim, so the sooner we can get started, the better.
What if my injuries exceed Lyft’s coverage?
If your injuries and damages exceed the amount of coverage provided by Lyft’s commercial insurance policy, you can file a personal injury lawsuit to pursue the compensation that you need. In the lawsuit, you will need to show that the driver failed to use the same level of care and skill that a reasonable and prudent driver would have used in the same situation.
This standard of care encompasses many factors. For example, a reasonable and prudent driver would obey all traffic laws, refrain from distracted driving, refrain from texting, and never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs. After proving that the driver was negligent behind the wheel, you will need to show that this negligence was the cause of the injuries that you suffered. Finally, be prepared to offer documentation showing the damages that you sustained as a result of the crash. These include medical bills, as well as lost income. The Boston attorneys at Breakstone, White & Gluck are here to build a strong case on your behalf.
Who is liable for a Boston Lyft accident?
The way rideshare companies work can make liability tricky. Typically, the liable party in the car accident that caused your injuries would be the Lyft driver. We’ll first seek compensation through the insurance of the at-fault driver. However, in certain circumstances, Lyft can be held responsible for the actions of its drivers – even though they do everything in their power to avoid it.
As we mentioned earlier, Lyft has approximately two million drivers throughout North America. However, these drivers are not direct employees of the company. Instead, they are classified as independent contractors. This means that Lyft may not necessarily be held liable if the driver commits a careless act like speeding or texting while driving. The doctrine of vicarious liability allows an accident victim to sue the employer of an employee who commits a careless act during the course and scope of their employment; the independent contractor arrangement seeks to avoid this liability. However, Lyft might be directly liable if it hired an unqualified driver, or allowed a driver with a poor driving history to keep working. Our attorneys fight to ensure all the right parties are held accountable for their negligent actions.
If you were injured in an accident as a Lyft driver or passenger caused by another motorist, we can help with your claim as well. We also handle accidents caused by defective vehicle parts.
Do you have a Lyft accident attorney near me?
Breakstone, White & Gluck has an office in Boston at 2 Center Plaza #530 in Government Center, within walking distance of the John Adams Courthouse and Suffolk County Superior Court. There’s a parking garage in the building. The MBTA Green Line and Blue Line are right across the street at the Government Center T station. There’s also a bus stop almost right in front of our office. If you are unable to travel because of your injuries, we can arrange a phone or video conference, or a hospital visit.
Boston Lyft accident lawyers fighting for people throughout Massachusetts
If you were involved in a car accident while using a ridesharing service like Lyft, you may be entitled to compensation. The Boston injury attorneys at Breakstone, White & Gluck understand that negotiating with insurance companies can be confusing and stressful. It doesn’t have to be. To learn more about your legal rights and how we can assist you, call our offices today or use our contact form to set up a consultation.