So, you are going shopping with a friend, and the friend is driving. Unfortunately, you are involved in a car accident while on the outing. What are your rights, and how do you go about recovering any damages?
In the state of Alabama, there is a statute which, in theory, exists to promote ride-shares. It is designed to help those you may need a ride to the grocery, for instance, but who do not have their own car.
As a passenger in a car in which you are not paying a fee to ride, you may sue the at-fault driver or drivers involved. You may recoup damages from both drivers’ insurance companies according to their degree of fault.
If you are the victim, as a passenger in one of these rides where there is no exchange of money, then you cannot make a claim against the driver for ordinary negligence.
A ride for hire is a different story altogether. This could be a cab, an Uber, Lyft, or other such ride in which you are required to pay a fare. And you would have to prove that your driver was behaving contrary to the provisions of the law in that state.
If your driver wrecks the car, and it is his fault, and you are the paying passenger, you will have to prove an extra level – up to wanton conduct, and not just ordinary negligence.
Determining liability in an automobile accident is not always an easy task. It is a time-consuming and some expertise. This is where you will want to contact a personal injury attorney to go to bat for your interests.
If you have legal questions, please consult our Online Legal Directory to find an attorney in your area.