If you’ve been injured in an accident while riding in the back of a taxicab, you are the victim of another driver’s negligence. Either your taxi driver or the driver who struck your car is at fault. If this is the case, you’re entitled to compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. However, insurance companies are reluctant to pay out full and fair settlements for most claims.
You’ll need the services of a skilled taxicab accident attorney in Florida to help you negotiate for a full settlement. Contact the Weinstein Legal Team and speak to one of our experienced, aggressive auto accident lawyers in Florida. We represent the victims of taxi accidents and Uber and Lyft accidents.
Establishing Liability in a Taxi or Rideshare Car Accident
When you first consult with a personal injury lawyer, they will attempt to determine the viability of your case. All accident cases must meet four criteria to be actionable:
1. Duty of Care
Cab drivers and other hired drivers have an established duty of care for the individuals who use their services. In cases where another negligent driver struck your taxi, that driver also has a duty of care for everyone else using the road.
2. Failure to Exercise Care
Your attorney must determine whether one or more of the drivers involved failed to use due care.
Was the lack of care responsible for the accident? Your attorney must establish that another party’s negligence caused the accident.
If you have been injured due to a taxi accident, you have damages, and your case meets the fourth criterion.
It’s important to remember that not all taxi cab accidents are the fault of the taxi driver. As is the case with all drivers in Florida, taxi drivers are vulnerable to the negligence of others. A taxicab attorney can analyze the level of responsibility each party has in the accident.
Taxi Cab Regulations
In the state of Florida, taxicabs are regulated at the county level. Under state law, the driver must only have a valid class E driver’s license to drive a cab. However, Orange, Broward, and Palm Beach counties have numerous regulations affecting licensing, insuring, and maintaining taxi cabs. Broward, for example, requires drivers to have a county chauffeur’s license. The taxi company must also carry insurance in the amounts of $125,000/$250,000/$50,000 (bodily injury per person/bodily injury for all persons/property damage). This is substantially more than the minimum amounts required for personal vehicles. These counties may also limit the number of taxis that can legally operate within their borders.
It should be noted that Uber and Lyft drivers are not subject to the same requirements as taxis but are liable for injuries to passengers in accidents they cause.
Common Causes of Taxi Accidents in Florida
Taxis are involved in the same types of accidents frequently occurring on Florida roadways: rear-end collisions, intersection accidents, lane change accidents, etc. But other factors can affect how cab drivers operate their vehicles on Florida roadways, and some make taxis especially dangerous to their passengers and other drivers.
Driver Fatigue – As is the case with all professional drivers, taxi drivers sometimes push themselves to a point where fatigue can slow reaction times. Many drivers use caffeine and other substances to increase their alertness. This can lead to drivers overreacting to events they encounter on the roadways.
Distracted Driving – Cab drivers have the same distractions as other drivers and many more. Cab drivers have meters in their vehicles, and some cars are equipped with radios. Although most modern taxis are dispatched via apps, it can also be distracting. Additionally, cab drivers have to interact with their passengers to receive directions, answer questions, and hear additional instructions.
Start and Stop Driving – Taxi drivers often scan the sides of the roads for passengers. Picking up and dropping off riders may make the cab drivers stop or slow suddenly or change lanes quickly. This creates hazards for other vehicles.
Another type of taxicab accident occurs when they allow a passenger to exit the vehicle into traffic. If you are injured by another vehicle as you exited your cab, the driver may be partially at fault.
Frequently Asked Questions About Taxi Cab Accidents
At the Weinstein Legal Team, we’ve successfully represented hundreds of car accident victims. If you don’t see the answer to your question here, contact the personal injury lawyers at Weinstein Legal for a free case evaluation.