Hobbs Lyft Accident Attorney
As an experienced Hobbs Lyft accident lawyer, W. Shane Jennings knows that the fast rise of ridesharing platforms like Lyft has revolutionized public transportation, especially in places like Hobbs, New Mexico. Nestled in the state’s southeastern region, Hobbs has transformed into a business hub and a bustling community.
As people travel inside the city to different destinations, the convenience of Lyft has made it easier than ever to get from point A to point B. Whether you have to catch a flight from the Lea County Regional Airport or plan to enjoy an evening out with friends at Babe’s Sports Page Bar and Grill or eat a delicious dish at Casey’s restaurant, Lyft is an easy transportation service.
But what happens when your ride results in an accident? As most knowledgeable people would advise, consulting with an expert Hobbs Lyft accident attorney is critical in the event of an accident.
However, before we dive into the small details of compensation and legal recourse, you must understand the immediate steps you should take when you’re involved in a Lyft accident. We’ll guide you through the steps below.
Understanding How Lyft, Uber, and Rideshare Services Work
Ridesharing services have taken the transportation world by storm over the past 10 years or so. Companies like Lyft and Uber are at the front of this transformation, enabling riders to connect with drivers through their smartphones. Below, our Lyft accident lawyers in Hobbs, New Mexico, give you a quick overview of how they work:
- Download and set up the mobile application. Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare services work via smartphone apps. You download the app, sign up, and enter your payment details to start.
- Request a ride. Next, input your destination, and the app will connect you to a nearby driver through GPS. It’ll display details about the car and driver.
- Pay the fare. The app will automatically calculate the fare based on time and distance and charge it to your linked account. Once you finish the ride, both parties can rate each other.
These rideshare companies offer dynamic pricing, and the prices can go up during high demand. When this happens, you’ll get an alert and can choose to wait for the prices to drop or accept it. There are also pooling options where you can share rides with others heading to the same destination for lower pricing.
Remember that profiles exist for passengers and drivers as a safety measure. Rideshare platforms also conduct background checks on drivers and feature in-app safety features. Finally, the companies offer different ride tiers, ranging from economy to luxury. Some cater to larger groups or special needs too.
Have You Been Injured in a Hobbs Lyft Accident?
While rideshare services are convenient, accidents can and do happen. Understanding the correct steps is critical if you are in a Lyft accident in Hobbs. Following these protocols can ensure your safety and protect your rights, and they include:
- Check for injuries. First and foremost, check for injuries. If you or anyone else is seriously hurt, seek medical attention immediately. If it’s safe, move out of the traffic flow to a secure location.
- Alert authorities. Even if the accident seems minor, always call the police. A police report can be valuable evidence if you decide to pursue a claim.
- Document everything. Take clear photos of the accident scene, the vehicles involved, any visible injuries, and other pertinent details. Collect names, addresses, and contact information of all parties involved, including witnesses.
- Report the accident to Lyft. Open your Lyft app and report the accident. Rideshare companies like Lyft have specific protocols for handling accidents involving their drivers.
- Seek medical attention. Even if you feel fine, seeing a doctor after an accident is wise. Some injuries might not be immediately evident and can manifest later.
- Don’t admit fault. It’s natural to want to apologize or discuss the accident but refrain from admitting fault or liability. Anything you say can be used against you later on.
- Seek legal advice. If you’ve sustained injuries or face significant damages, consider seeking advice from a Lyft accident attorney in Hobbs, NM. They can guide you through the process, ensuring your rights are protected and helping you secure the compensation you deserve.
Can I Sue for a Lyft Accident in New Mexico?
In the bustling rideshare industry, companies like Lyft have emerged as modern transportation giants, changing the way many people travel. However, with their rise comes a host of legal complexities surrounding liability and accident responsibility. In New Mexico, as in many places, if you’re involved in a rideshare accident, navigating the legal waters can be challenging, but you have rights.
Understanding Liability in Rideshare Accidents
Unlike traditional public transportation or city taxi services, where vehicles are typically insured and regulated by the city, rideshare drivers for companies like Lyft operate more as freelancers or independent contractors. Hobbs Lyft accident lawyer W. Shane Jennings knows that this distinction is crucial when not only understanding but determining liability.
While rideshare companies may see themselves as simple tech entities connecting riders with drivers, they provide some protections for their drivers, most notably a $1 million liability and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Still, holding these companies accountable isn’t always straightforward.
In New Mexico, your ability to sue after a Lyft or Uber accident gets influenced by the specific circumstances of the incident:
- Rideshare passengers or drivers. If you were in the vehicle when the accident occurred and the rideshare driver was at fault, typically, the company’s liability insurance will cover you. However, the situation might be treated differently if the driver wasn’t actively transporting a passenger.
- Rideshare drivers in other accidents. If you’re a rideshare driver involved in an accident where another party caused it and they don’t have adequate insurance, you might be able to claim against the rideshare company’s insurance.
- Third-party involvement. Passengers injured in a rideshare vehicle due to a third party’s fault might have coverage from the rideshare’s uninsured/underinsured motorist policy if the third party’s insurance proves insufficient.
For rideshare drivers in New Mexico, most auto insurance policies offer supplemental insurance that acts as a financial safety net in the event of accidents. Also, it’s vital to note that rideshare drivers, like all drivers, have to follow traffic laws and ensure they safely maintain their vehicles.
New Mexico Rideshare Laws and Passenger Injuries
A turning point in New Mexico rideshare regulations came in March 2016 when former Gov. Susana Martinez signed the “Transportation Network Company Services Act” (HB 168). This act established a unique regulatory framework for rideshare companies in New Mexico, classifying Lyft and other rideshare platforms as “transportation network companies” and providing them exemptions from New Mexico’s Motor Carrier Act.
With this distinction, New Mexico’s rideshare drivers don’t have to register their vehicles as commercial entities. Additionally, they aren’t allowed to street hail or accept cash payments for rides. One standout point in this act is the classification of rideshare drivers as independent contractors. This distinction has significant implications for liability, especially in accident scenarios.
HB 168 also outlines a tiered insurance policy. When a driver just logs into their app without an active passenger, they must have coverage of $50,000 a person for bodily injuries, $100,000 for an accident, and $25,000 for property damage. These figures jump significantly once a ride is initiated, with the primary liability insurance set at a minimum of a million dollars.
For those injured as passengers in a rideshare accident where the driver is guilty, you can file claims against the driver or the company. However, if another party is responsible for the accident, your Hobbs Lyft accident attorney should approach that party’s insurance provider.
Do I Need a Hobbs Lyft Accident Lawyer, or Can I Handle My Own Case?
Rideshare companies, including Lyft, sometimes try to avoid responsibility for accidents. Even though they carry $1 million in liability, they may try to argue that they’re not responsible for your injuries. For Lyft drivers, the company coverage addresses liability but may not extend to your medical bills or vehicle damage if you cause the accident.
As a passenger, you could face obstacles when you try to contact the company after the accident. Also, other drivers involved in the accident or their insurers may shift blame. Getting a Lyft accident attorney in Hobbs can help the responsible parties pay for your losses.
Car accidents injure millions of people each year. With changing rideshare laws, consulting a professional and experienced Lyft accident lawyer in Hobbs is critical to help ensure you get a fair settlement and protect your rights.
Will I Be Compensated for My Injuries After a Lyft Accident?
After a Lyft accident, you may wonder which types of compensation you can get. The damages you can claim depend on your accident’s specifics, including who caused it and your injury severity. Potential compensation includes:
Economic Damages from Lyft or Uber Accidents
- Emergency care — costs from immediate treatments right after the accident
- Future earnings — if the accident affects your ability to earn in the future
- Lost wages — money you lost because you couldn’t work after the accident
- Medical bills — can cover doctor visits, hospital stays, or any other medical care
- Physical therapy — appointments you might need to get back on your feet and heal
- Rehabilitation — any long-term treatments or therapies
Non-Economic Damages from Lyft or Uber Accidents
- Emotional stress — traumas or anxieties that result from the incident
- Pain and suffering — for any physical or emotional pain from the accident
- Physical scars — for any lasting marks or injuries
- Quality of life — if the accident affects your everyday life or activities
- Serious injuries — compensation for things like lost limbs or lasting physical changes
Punitive damages are a bit different. The court awards them when someone acts highly recklessly. For example, if:
- The rideshare company knew a driver had a bad record but let them keep driving anyway.
- Your Lyft or Uber driver was very careless or had been in many accidents before.
In such situations, our team might aim for punitive damages on your behalf. And remember, in New Mexico, there’s no set maximum for these damages, which is good for victims to know.
Lyft and Uber Insurance in New Mexico
In New Mexico, like in many states, these companies provide coverage that starts when the driver is using the app. The insurance typically has three periods:
- When the app is on but no ride is accepted
- From the time a ride is accepted until the passenger is picked up
- From the time the passenger is in the vehicle until the end of the ride
The coverage levels vary for each period, with the highest coverage usually being provided when a passenger is in the vehicle. Both companies require drivers to have their own personal auto insurance. However, should the personal insurance not cover an incident or be insufficient, the companies’ insurance steps in. It’s important for drivers to be aware of what their personal policy covers and to ensure they are adequately insured, as there might be gaps in coverage. For the most current information on Lyft and Uber insurance policies in New Mexico, you should consult their respective websites or local regulations.
Hobbs, New Mexico
Tucked away in the state’s southeastern region, Hobbs, New Mexico, is a unique gem that offers a rich history, vibrant culture, and modern amenities. It’s a destination that seamlessly combines its past with a promising future, making it an essential stop for anyone exploring the state.
For those flying into the region, the Lea County Regional Airport offers easy access to the heart of the city. And once you land, the buzzing local scene promises endless avenues of exploration. Car enthusiasts and visitors flock to the Block Party Car Show, a vibrant gathering showcasing an array of unique and classic vehicles. This event is a visual treat, providing a fantastic way to immerse yourself in the community spirit of Hobbs.
For the more active visitor, the CO Center of Recreational Excellence stands out as a hub for fitness and recreation. Whether you’re a sports enthusiast or just looking for a fun family outing, the CORE provides a range of facilities and activities for all ages. And after working up an appetite, what better way to cure your hunger than with authentic Mexican food? Tia Juana’s Mexican Grille & Cantina offers a fantastic array of traditional dishes, ensuring every meal is a memorable experience.
Hobbs truly stands out as a destination that has something for everyone. So, whether you’re a resident or a visitor, hopping into a Lyft can open the door to a range of unique experiences in this fascinating New Mexico city.
Rideshare Attorney Serving Hobbs, NM
When safeguarding your rights after a rideshare accident in Hobbs, NM, having a seasoned attorney by your side is essential. W. Shane Jennings brings a wealth of experience and a robust track record of fighting for his client’s rights.
With a deep understanding of the local laws and an unwavering commitment to justice, he has been the go-to legal advocate for many clients in Hobbs and its surrounding areas. His dedication to ensuring each client is heard and treated fairly makes him ideal for anyone seeking representation. Trust in W. Shane Jennings to guide your legal journey with expertise and compassion.