Uber Accident Insurance – Are You Covered?
As rideshare programs like Uber becoming increasingly popular, accidents involving Uber vehicles are also becoming more common. If you have been involved in a car accident with a vehicle used for ride-sharing, you may have questions about what types of compensation are available for your injuries and other expenses.
Insurance in Ontario for rideshare programs
Last year, the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) approved fleet insurance coverage for two rideshare companies operating in Ontario: Uber and RideCo. This means that any other ridesharing program does not have this coverage available.
This Uber accident insurance is valid whenever the Uber application is turned on, and covers passengers, other road users, and pedestrians. Anyone that is injured in an accident with an Uber vehicle, while the application is active, has access to compensation for their injuries. This compensation is available regardless of the insurance status of the Uber driver, and regardless of whether you have your own insurance. It covers accidents with other drivers, including hit-and-run accidents.
The policy is also expressly primary to any standard personal coverage that a passenger or third party may have. This means that even if you have your own insurance, the Uber insurance policy will pay out first.
Uber accident insurance when the application is turned off
The new fleet policy only covers Uber drivers when they are actively seeking rides or carrying passengers. When the application is off, the driver reverts to their own personal insurance coverage. This can be a serious risk to other drivers and pedestrians if they are injured in an accident. If a driver has not disclosed their activities to their own insurer, they may have coverage denied altogether, leaving victims with very little compensation available.
Additional insurance to protect yourself
Even if your injuries are covered by the Uber accident insurance policy, this coverage still may not offer enough compensation. This is because the coverage is limited to the standard protection offered, and must be shared between all injured victims. In a very serious accident, there may not be enough to go around.
However, it is possible for members of the public to protect themselves by purchasing underinsurance coverage, or optional accident benefits coverage, from their own insurer. These policies are often available at very modest costs, and can offer protection and peace of mind, especially if you are a frequent rideshare customer. Certainly, customers using rideshare services other than Uber or RideCo should ensure they have additional coverage, since these do not yet have fleet insurance coverage in Ontario.
Legal advice following an Uber accident
If you have been involved in an Uber accident, an experienced personal injury lawyer can help you navigate the complicated insurance landscape, and get you compensation. At Derfel Injury Law, we can help you determine what insurance coverage is available, and help you claim accident benefits to cover medical expenses, lost income and other costs. Call us at 416-847-3580 to schedule a meeting, or contact us online.