Regardless of whether you’re in the driver’s seat, the passenger’s seat, or the backseat of a vehicle, getting into a car accident can be scary. Depending on the severity of the accident, you may even suffer an injury. But what do you do if your Lyft driver gets into an accident during your trip? As a passenger, you have legal rights.
In the event that you suffer an injury while participating in a rideshare program like Lyft, the first thing you should do after receiving the appropriate medical care is contact a personal injury lawyer in Toronto, Richmond Hill, Vaughan, or wherever you’re currently located in the GTA. Not only can a Toronto personal injury lawyer help you understand your legal rights, but they can also work closely with you to put together a strong legal case on your behalf and represent you during legal proceedings.
What is Lyft’s Insurance Policy in Ontario?
Rideshare programs like Lyft typically have sundry insurance policies that can vary from one location to another based on regional legal stipulations. Although Ontario is the only Canadian province that Lyft currently operates in, the company has announced plans for expansion in the foreseeable future.
Lyft is also in direct competition with Uber for a large portion of Ontario’s rideshare market. Keeping that in mind, you should know that Lyft’s insurance policies are pretty standard and therefore similar to Uber’s policies, which we covered in an earlier post.
According to the company’s website, Lyft currently has a 5-prong policy for its drivers in Ontario.
- Automobile Liability Coverage
- Statutory Accident Benefits Coverage
- Uninsured Automobile Coverage
- Direct Compensation –Property Damage Coverage
- Contingent Comprehensive and Collision Coverage
If you’re a Lyft driver, you can easily access their insurance policy in the driver app. Here’s how:
- Open the driver app and navigate over to the sidebar
- Then tap on “Vehicle”
- Next tap on the vehicle that you want to view insurance for (drivers can keep multiple Lyft-approved cars on your account)
- Then tap “Lyft Insurance”
And voila! You can now view the insurance policy for each specific vehicle on your account.
A Closer Look At Lyft’s Auto Insurance Coverage
Much like Uber and other rideshare companies, Lyft requires its drivers to have personal auto insurance (which is also a law in Ontario). If the driver is using their own vehicle, then they’re also expected to have personal auto insurance for when they’re off-the-job or offline as per provincial laws. Drivers are also expected to maintain a clean driving record and perform regular vehicle maintenance to ensure the safety of their passengers and keep up the company’s reputation.
Automobile Liability Coverage
Lyft’s automobile liability coverage is similar in principle to Uber. It’s “designed to act as the primary coverage during the time the Lyft Driver app is on and available to accept a ride request until a ride has ended in the app”. Essentially, the coverage goes into effect the moment the app goes into “driver mode” until the ride is complete.
In the event of an accident or other incidents, while driver mode is activated, the policy extends to passengers and anyone else involved. It “provides coverage for bodily injuries or losses”. But there are certain conditions involved.
Like Uber, the policy is only in effect during official Lyft or rideshare business. Personal insurance resumes the moment the driver goes offline.
Statutory Accident Benefits Coverage
Regardless of who is at fault for the accident – whether it’s your Lyft driver or another motorist – the Statutory Accident Benefits Coverage package ensures that everyone involved, including injured passengers, receives the compensation to which they’re entitled as per the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule of the Insurance Act (Ontario).
Uninsured Automobile Coverage
Another way that Lyft protects their employees and their customers is by providing comprehensive uninsured or underinsured automobile accident coverage in the event of a collision with an uninsured or underinsured motorist who is at fault. Although there are certain limitations to this coverage depending on the length and period of the ride in question, it’s still a useful policy to have in place if the at-fault driver’s insurance doesn’t cover the full extent of the damages or injuries incurred.
Direct Compensation Property Damage Coverage
Vehicles that are on the road a lot have a higher risk of getting into an accident. Direct compensation for property damage covers Lyft drivers if another motorist is at fault. The coverage extends up to the cash value of the vehicle or the cost of repairs. Whichever amount is less will be covered.
Contingent Comprehensive and Collision Coverage
Contingent comprehensive and collision coverage covers the cost of repairing a vehicle in the event that physical damage occurs as a result of a natural disaster, vandalism, or other events outside of a car accident. For this to apply, however, drivers must have coverage as part of their personal insurance policy. This policy has a $1,000 deductible and covers up to the cash value of your vehicle or the cost of repair, whichever amount is lower.
Lyft also has an in-between or pre-acceptance stage which indicates that the driver mode is on, but a ride hasn’t been accepted yet or that the driver is on duty and waiting for ride requests to come in. During this time, the automobile liability coverage limit is up to $1,000,000 per accident.
Lyft also has a post-accident insurance policy. Basically, this means that they cover accidents that occur after a ride has been accepted. At this point, the coverage amount doubles to $2,000,000.
Both instances are also guaranteed direct compensation in the form of “actual cash value or cost of repair, whichever is less”, but this depends on the driver’s level of responsibility.
Were you recently injured in a Lyft car accident and need a disability insurance lawyer in Toronto or the GTA?
Mirian Law Firm can help you understand your rights, map out a feasible legal case for you, and fight to get the compensation you deserve. Book your free assessment with one of our personal injury lawyers in Toronto, Richmond Hill, or Vaughan today!