Can I Get Compensation for a Taxi Accident?
Have you ever been in an accident as a passenger in a taxi, or were you or someone you know involved in a collision with a taxi? If you became injured in a taxi accident, then you may be able to receive compensation.
Larger cities, like New York, have become known for their taxis. The yellow cars and vans are a fundamental feature of the city environment. They are part of everyday life for many people.
Taxi Accident Info
Taxis, like other cars, and ride services like Lyft, have their fair share of accidents. New York City’s Taxi and Limousine Commission tracks fatal and serious injury crashes of its licensed taxi drivers. In 2016, the TLC reported 30 fatal or critical injury crashes per 100,000 licensed taxi drivers. Compare that with the national average of the same year showing 13 fatal crashes per 100,000 registered vehicles.
The common causes of these accidents are the same as incidents with other vehicles:
- Driving aggressively
- Distracted driving
- Driving when fatigued
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
Depending on the city, a taxi driver may have some on-the-job training, but otherwise, he or she may only need a valid driver’s license, knowledge of the area and a permit to operate the taxi.
Types of Taxi Accidents
People categorize taxi accidents into two types that can involve liability on the taxi driver or the company.
If a taxi hits the car you are driving, then the incident is labeled a two-car accident. A taxi accident claim is like any other car accident claim. You can file an insurance claim with the taxi’s insurance company or file a personal injury lawsuit.
Accident as a Passenger
If you are a passenger in a taxi when it becomes involved in an accident, you have the same rights as in any car accident case to receive compensation. Your situation may be more manageable because you do not have to prove liability. You have the option of filing a claim against one or both drivers responsible.
As a passenger, the taxi company’s duty is for the utmost care and safety once you:
- Put yourself under the carrier’s control or have an intent to board
- The taxi driver gives an acceptance of you as a passenger
Insurance for Possible Compensation
- $125,000 in bodily injury insurance
- $250,000 for each taxi accident
- $50,000 in property damage liability coverage
In New York City, taxi insurance limits of liability coverage get set by the TLC. Limits include:
- $100,000 per person
- $300,000 per accident
- $200,000 for personal injury protection
- $10,000 in property damage
Other states may require as much as $500,000 in accident coverage.
The Problem With Getting Taxi Compensation
Even with insurance, however, obtaining the compensation you deserve can offer particular challenges.
- As a Passenger
In those places that use taxis as everyday conveyances, more than one passenger may be in a taxi. So, several people at once could file claims against the taxi’s insurance company. If this is the case, multiple claims could exhaust the coverage. With little money left over, you would have to settle for less than what your case is worth. As a passenger, however, you can file claims with the insurance companies of all drivers not at fault in the accident.
- As a Driver of the Other Vehicle
If you were the driver of the car involved in the accident with the taxi, then you need to file a claim against the taxi’s insurance company. You then must prove negligence by the taxi driver.
Insurance companies are likely to dispute the extent of the driver’s liability. Then it comes down to the state’s fault laws. For example, Texas is an at-fault state. So, if you are more than 51% at fault for the accident, you cannot get compensation for damages. On the other hand, in Kansas, a no-fault state, you do not have to prove that someone else caused the accident to receive reimbursement for costs.
What To Do After a Taxi Accident
Car accidents are nerve-wracking, and your adrenaline may be pumping after the collision. Take the time to calm down and dial 911. Although you do not feel pain, you may have sustained severe injuries. If you do not go to the hospital by ambulance, see a doctor as soon as possible.
While you are at the accident scene, and if you are able, do the following:
- Take pictures of the area, including the roadway and other vehicles involved in the accident. Your insurance company or attorney may need these photos for evidence.
- Collect as much information as you can from other crash victims and eye-witnesses.
- Write down the names and addresses of everyone involved.
- Get insurance information, license plate numbers and vehicle descriptions.
- Take notes of witness observations.
- Get the accident report from the police. It is likely your insurance carrier or attorney will request to use the report as evidence in your case.
- Do not speak to the taxi driver or the taxi company’s insurance provider. Your insurance representative or attorney can talk to these people on your behalf.
Keep detailed records of everything you collected, photos taken and documents received. Also keep track of your doctors’ visits and medical insurance information. Make several copies to keep for yourself and to give out to others as needed.
Work With an Experienced Local Lawyer
Do not wait to contact an attorney after your accident. All states have a deadline for bringing a claim or filing a lawsuit. In some states, you have as little as 12 months in which to take action. In the days following an accident, along with seeing doctors and insurance adjusters, do not forget to consult an attorney.
Are you concerned about how can you pay for medical expenses and vehicle repairs or a new car? Whether you were a passenger or the driver of another vehicle, you may get compensation if you become injured in a taxi accident by working with an experienced local taxi accident lawyer. Submit an online request or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with a taxi accident attorney near you.