Rideshare Assaults: Do You Have A Legal Leg On Which To Stand?
Rideshare companies have exploded in the last five years. They have become the best source of inexpensive transportation you can get when you are in a strange city and you do not want to pay taxi fees. There are just a couple of problems with rideshares that have put a black eye on these companies. The problems include physical and sexual assaults, all of which leave the public a little more frightened and hesitant to use these services. For the most part, they are safe, and they are safer still if you are riding with at least one other person in the vehicle. However, if you are assaulted in a rideshare vehicle, you may be wondering if you have a legal leg on which to stand. Here is what rideshare accident lawyers have to say about these situations.
You Can Sue
Ridesharing is a service. You agree to use the service with the understanding that you will be taken safely from point A to point B. You have the same expectations with ridesharing as you do with taking a taxi. The drivers are not allowed to touch or hit you, just as you are not allowed to touch or hit them. If you are physically or sexually assaulted, you absolutely can sue. Trying to figure out who to sue is the next step.
Check Your Rideshare App and Sue the Driver
First and foremost, each driver working for a rideshare company is an independent contractor. It means that the drivers sign up to work for the rideshare companies, but ultimately it is the drivers who choose how much money to earn and which fares to pick up and drop off. The drivers also choose their hours. Nothing is scheduled by the rideshare company, but the company does make sure the drivers are paid by collecting the money you pay through the app for your rides.
As such, your first line of defense (after filing a police report for assault!) is to file a lawsuit against the driver that assaulted you. You can find the name of the driver and pertinent information about your ride on the day or night of your assault within the app's ride history. Give this information to your lawyer.
File a Suit Against the Rideshare Company as Well
The rideshare company should have done a decent job of looking into the backgrounds of the people they hire. Right now, there really is no regulatory means of doing that. It places every passenger at the mercy of the drivers. By attempting to sue the rideshare company, you may be able to push for better regulations in terms of checking driver backgrounds to protect other riders.
For more information or assistance, call a rideshare accident lawyer.