Voted Best Personal Injury Law Firm By Georgia Lawyers
Marietta Lyft Accident Lawyers
Matt Wetherington with Wetherington Law Firm,P.C. is the hardest working attorney I have ever worked with. He went above and beyond our expectations. Calls and emails are returned promptly and by Mr. Wetherington himself.
5 Stars is nowhere near enough to rate how awesome Matt and his colleagues were. They took my case even when I didn’t think there was anything we could do. I was in a bad situation at the time and Matt, Robert, and Sarah were there for me every step of the way.
I’m so grateful to Ben Levy and everything he did for me. He was truly dedicated to helping my case. Throughout the process, Ben was very thoughtful, responsive, organized, and made sure I was fully informed along the way.
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Lyft accidents in Marietta can leave people with big worries. When you’re in a crash involving Lyft, you might get hurt, have to pay for doctor visits, or even miss work. This can be really tough on you and your family. The law in Georgia says that if you’re hurt because someone else wasn’t careful, like a Lyft driver or another driver, you have the right to ask for money to help with these problems. This is called making a compensation claim.
The rules about these claims are in laws like O.C.G.A. § 51-1-6, which talks about how someone who causes harm because they weren’t careful needs to make things right. And O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33 says you have two years to ask for this help after the accident. That might seem like a long time, but it’s really not, especially when you’re trying to get better.
At Wetherington Law Firm, we know how hard it can be after a Lyft accident. We’re here to help you understand your rights and get the compensation you deserve. We’ll handle the tough talks with insurance companies and make sure they see how the accident has changed your life. If you or someone you love needs help after a Lyft accident, call us. We’re ready to help you start healing and get back on track.
How Lyft Accidents Happen and Their Impact on Victims
Lyft accidents in Marietta, just like any other city, can happen for many reasons. Sometimes, it’s because the Lyft driver might not be paying enough attention to the road or might be tired from driving too much. Other times, accidents happen because other drivers on the road aren’t careful around Lyft cars. Bad weather, like rain or snow, can also make driving dangerous and lead to accidents. Even problems with the car, like brake failure, can cause crashes.
When people get hurt in Lyft accidents, it can change their lives in big ways. They might have serious injuries that need a lot of doctor visits and even surgery, which can cost a lot of money. Some injuries can be so bad that people can’t go back to work for a long time, losing money they need to pay bills and take care of their families. Besides the physical pain, being in an accident can make people feel really scared or sad, affecting their mental health.
It’s important to know that if you’re hurt in a Lyft accident, the law says you have the right to ask for help. This means you can ask for money to cover your doctor bills, the money you didn’t make because you couldn’t work, and even for how the accident made you feel. Getting this help can be a big step in making things a little easier after the accident.
Georgia Laws on Lyft Accident Claims
In Georgia, laws that cover Lyft accident claims are designed to protect passengers, drivers, and others who might get hurt in an accident involving a rideshare vehicle. Here’s a brief overview:
- Insurance Coverage: Georgia law requires Lyft and other rideshare companies to carry a certain amount of insurance coverage. This insurance kicks in at different times: when the Lyft driver is waiting for a ride request, when they’ve accepted a ride and are on their way to pick up the passenger, and when the passenger is in the car. Specifically, once a ride is accepted until its completion, Lyft provides $1 million in liability coverage.
- Comparative Fault (O.C.G.A. § 51-12-33): Georgia uses a modified comparative fault system. This means if you’re injured in a Lyft accident, your compensation can be reduced by your percentage of fault. If you’re found to be 50% or more at fault, you won’t be able to recover any compensation.
- Statute of Limitations (O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33): For personal injury claims in Georgia, including those from Lyft accidents, you generally have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. This time limit is crucial for ensuring your claim is considered valid.
- Filing Claims Against Multiple Parties: Often, Lyft accident claims can involve multiple parties, such as the Lyft driver, another driver involved in the accident, or even the manufacturer of a faulty vehicle part. Georgia law allows you to seek compensation from any party that contributed to your injuries.
Steps to Take After a Lyft Accident
If you’re involved in a Lyft accident, taking the right steps can help ensure your safety and protect your rights. Here’s what to do:
- Check for Injuries: First, make sure you and anyone else involved are okay. Call 911 if anyone is hurt.
- Report the Accident: Inform the police about the accident so they can create a report. This is important for any insurance or legal claims.
- Exchange Information: Get the contact and insurance details from the Lyft driver and any other drivers involved. Also, note the make, model, and license plate numbers of all vehicles.
- Document the Scene: Take photos of the accident scene, including damage to vehicles, any visible injuries, and road conditions. If there are witnesses, get their contact information too.
- Notify Lyft: Use the Lyft app or website to report the accident. Lyft has a process for handling accidents involving their drivers.
- Seek Medical Attention: Even if you don’t think you’re injured, it’s a good idea to see a doctor. Some injuries might not be immediately apparent.
- Keep Records: Save all receipts and records related to the accident, including medical expenses and any communication with Lyft or insurance companies.
- Contact a Lawyer: Consider speaking with our Lyft accident and personal injury lawyer. They can advise you on your rights, help you navigate the insurance claims process, and work to get you the compensation you deserve.
Understanding Liability in Lyft Accidents
Understanding who is at fault, or liable, in a Lyft accident involves figuring out who acted carelessly or broke the rules of the road. Here are some key points:
- Lyft Driver Responsibility: If the Lyft driver was driving unsafely, like speeding or not paying attention, they might be considered at fault. Since they’re using their car for a paid service, both the driver and Lyft could be responsible for damages.
- Another Driver’s Fault: Sometimes, another driver might cause the accident by doing something wrong, like running a red light. In this case, that driver would be liable for any harm caused.
- Vehicle Problems: If a car malfunction, like brake failure, leads to the accident, the company that made the car or the mechanic who last worked on it might be at fault.
- Lyft’s Role: Lyft provides insurance coverage for accidents involving their drivers. This coverage varies depending on whether the driver was waiting for a ride request, on their way to pick up a passenger, or had a passenger in the car.
- Comparative Fault in Georgia: Georgia uses a “modified comparative fault” rule, meaning if you’re partly at fault for the accident, your compensation could be reduced by your percentage of fault. If you’re 50% or more at fault, you can’t collect damages.
Types of Compensation for Lyft Accident Victims
Lyft accident victims may be eligible for various types of compensation, depending on the details of the accident and the extent of their injuries. Here are the main types of compensation they might receive:
- Medical Expenses: Compensation for medical bills can cover everything from emergency room visits and hospital stays to rehabilitation and ongoing medical treatments related to the accident.
- Lost Wages: If injuries from the accident caused you to miss work, you could be compensated for lost income. This includes both wages lost during your recovery and potential future earnings if your injuries prevent you from returning to your previous job.
- Pain and Suffering: This type of compensation is for the physical pain and emotional distress you’ve experienced as a result of the accident. It acknowledges the non-economic impact of your injuries.
- Property Damage: If your personal property, such as your vehicle, was damaged in the accident, you can receive compensation for repairs or the cost of replacement.
- Punitive Damages: In cases where the responsible party’s actions were particularly reckless or egregious, punitive damages may be awarded. These are intended to punish the wrongdoer and deter similar conduct in the future.
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life: If your injuries prevent you from enjoying hobbies and activities you once loved, you may be eligible for compensation for this loss.
- Loss of Consortium: Family members of the accident victim can receive compensation for the loss of companionship, affection, and support due to the victim’s injuries.
Who can be held liable in a Lyft accident?
In a Lyft accident, several parties could potentially be held liable, depending on the circumstances:
- Lyft Driver: If the accident was caused by the Lyft driver’s negligence, such as distracted driving, speeding, or violating traffic laws, the driver can be held liable for damages.
- Another Driver: If another driver’s actions led to the accident, that driver could be held responsible. This includes scenarios where another vehicle hits the Lyft car.
- Lyft, the Company: While Lyft drivers are independent contractors, there are situations where Lyft might be held liable, especially in regards to their hiring practices or the adequacy of their training and safety policies. The extent of Lyft’s liability can depend on the driver’s status at the time of the accident (e.g., whether they had a passenger or were waiting for a ride request).
- Vehicle Manufacturers: If a vehicle defect contributed to the accident, the manufacturer of the Lyft vehicle or the other vehicle involved could be held liable under product liability laws.
- Maintenance Providers: If poor maintenance of the Lyft vehicle is a factor in the accident, the party responsible for maintaining the vehicle could be held liable.
- Government Entities: In cases where road conditions, signage, or traffic signals contributed to the accident, local or state government entities responsible for road maintenance and safety might be liable.
How long do I have to file a Lyft accident claim in Georgia?
In Georgia, you generally have two years from the date of the Lyft accident to file a personal injury lawsuit, as per the statute of limitations outlined in O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33. This means you need to initiate legal action within two years if you’re seeking compensation for injuries sustained in the accident.
For property damage claims, such as damage to your vehicle, Georgia law extends the timeframe, allowing you up to four years to file a claim (O.C.G.A. § 9-3-32).
What if the Lyft driver wasn’t at fault for the accident?
If the Lyft driver wasn’t at fault for the accident, you might still be able to seek compensation from other parties responsible for the accident. Here’s how it works:
- Another Driver at Fault: If another driver caused the accident, you would typically seek compensation through that driver’s insurance policy. This can include damages for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
- Vehicle Manufacturer or Maintenance Provider: If the accident was caused by a vehicle defect or poor maintenance, you might have a claim against the manufacturer of the vehicle or the company responsible for its maintenance. This falls under product liability or negligence.
- Government Entities: If poor road conditions or inadequate signage contributed to the accident, a local or state government entity responsible for road maintenance might be liable for damages.
- Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage: If the at-fault party doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance to cover your damages, you may be able to make a claim under your own insurance policy’s uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, if you have it.
If you’ve been involved in a Lyft accident in Marietta and aren’t sure what to do next, Wetherington Law Firm is here to guide you through every step of the process. Our experienced team specializes in Lyft accident claims and is dedicated to ensuring you receive the compensation you deserve.
Don’t navigate this challenging time alone—contact us today for a free consultation, and let’s start working together to secure your rights and support your recovery.