Getting from point A to point B has perhaps never been more convenient than with the advent of ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft. Passengers no longer worry about getting a ride home after bar close or a late flight since a ride can arrive at the tap of a screen.

Along with the ease and accessibility of these apps does come a few safety concerns. There are the usual risks of car accidents, but with the added challenge of not knowing the driver of your vehicle and trying to deal with a corporation to handle the aftermath.

If you are the passenger in an Uber or Lyft and your driver is responsible for an accident, both companies hold liability policies to cover such accidents. Who was at fault is less of an issue for you as a passenger in an Uber or Lyft accident as the companies provide coverage to passengers regardless.

What to do after an accident

As with any car accident, the first thing to do is call 911 to get police and any medical attention that may be necessary. Even as a passenger it is recommended that you document the accident for your own reference. If you are physically able, you should:

  • Take photos of any damage from the accident scene
  • Make sure you have your driver’s name and vehicle information recorded
  • Take a screenshot of your app’s receipt for the ride

It’s best to have this documentation available for insurance and legal purposes following an accident in a ride-hailing vehicle, but you are still entitled to protection if you’re unable to document the accident.

Chances are that you won’t have a claim against the companies themselves. Drivers for ride-hailing services are typically contractors, not full employees, which means the companies have some distance from their liability in an accident. In most cases, a passenger would have a claim against a driver and not the service.

Ride-hailing apps come with their fair share of perks, but you can’t ignore the potential risks associated with companies like Uber and Lyft. The industry is still relatively new which means there are many unknowns yet to come.

Your safety shouldn’t be one of those unknowns. Know what you can do if you’re a passenger in an accident while riding with Lyft or Uber.