Atlantic City has seen many benefits to having rideshare companies operating in our city. Catching a Lyft is easy on days when inclement weather makes a walk from the train station to work unbearable. Lyft drivers make for great designated drivers after a night out and rideshares are very convenient for visitors who fly here and do not want to rent a car. New Jersey has specific rideshare laws that are only applicable right here in Atlantic City and other areas of state, but those protections are not applicable across state lines. These laws protect Atlantic City tourists, commuters, and residents. Our Lyft accident attorneys at The Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. appreciate these protections, but we still have some concerns with rideshare operations related to safety and protection for rideshare passengers.
- Insurance coverage – Insurance coverage issues have proven to be a big problem with rideshare companies. Injured parties are sometimes bounced back and forth between the driver and rideshare’s insurance companies that deny coverage.
- Driver training – There are no driver training regulations or requirements for rideshare drivers.
- Vehicle maintenance – Rideshare companies have driver vehicle maintenance requirements, but we have concerns about whether or not these requirements are being enforced and if they are strict enough to ensure passengers are riding in a well-maintained and safe vehicle.
- Driver background checks – Fingerprinting drivers are not required by rideshare companies or in the state of New Jersey. Fingerprinting drivers when running background checks would add another layer of protection for rideshare passengers.
- Independent contractors rather than employees–Lyft and Uber often come under fire for being able to dodge drive for hire regulations because they classify their drivers as independent contractors rather than employees. This also helps rideshare companies avoid liability for its drivers’ actions that they would otherwise be liable for if drivers were classified as employees.
New Jersey law
New Jersey’s Transportation Network Company Safety and Regulatory Act was implemented in order to offer safety protections related to rideshare companies. The Act sets forth insurance requirements and safety regulations for rideshare companies and drivers.See below for highlights of the Act.
Driver background checks – The Act requires background checks for drivers. Drivers who have any of the following convictions are prohibited from contracting to drive with a rideshare company in New Jersey:
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Reckless driving
- Sexual assault
- Possession or sale of a dangerous controlled substance
Insurance requirements – The Act sets forth insurance requirements for the driver and rideshare company including a $1.5M liability insurance policy that is in effect while the driver is transporting a passenger.
There are still complicated issues of liability and insurance coverage in certain accident circumstances, especially for injured parties that have not hired an attorney to advocate for them. If you have been injured in an accident that involves a rideshare driver, contact our Atlantic City Lyft accident attorneys to go over your case. Our attorneys are experienced and knowledgeable about rideshare accident liability, insurance policies, and coverage requirements. We will help you prove liability and negotiate with insurance companies in order to see that you are fully and fairly compensated for your injuries and damages.