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Navigating the aftermath of a ridesharing accident can be as confusing as it is stressful. At Heintz Law, we understand that determining liability is a critical component of your case. In Florida, where ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft have become integral to our transportation system, understanding how liability is determined is essential for anyone involved in such an accident.

What Constitutes a Rideshare Accident?

In the context of Florida law, a rideshare accident encompasses any collision or vehicle-related incident that involves a ridesharing vehicle, such as those operated by Uber or Lyft, under the following circumstances:

  1. While Logged into the Rideshare App: The moment a rideshare driver logs into the app, they are considered to be operating under the rideshare company's umbrella. Any accident that occurs from this point, even if there is no passenger in the car, may be considered a rideshare accident.
  2. During a Trip Request: From the time a driver accepts a trip request until the passenger is dropped off, any accident is considered a rideshare accident. This includes the journey to pick up a passenger and the time the passenger is in the vehicle.
  3. Involving Third Parties: If a rideshare vehicle causes an accident that involves pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, or other vehicles, this is also classified as a rideshare accident. Liability may extend to the rideshare company if the driver was engaged in a rideshare activity.
  4. Passenger Injuries: If you are a passenger in a rideshare vehicle and sustain injuries, no matter who is at fault for the accident, it is considered a rideshare accident.
  5. Driver Injuries: Rideshare drivers are also at risk and may be considered victims in rideshare accidents, especially if another party is at fault.

Understanding what constitutes a rideshare accident is crucial for legal proceedings, as it can affect the insurance claims process and the potential compensation available to injured parties. Our firm specializes in navigating the complexities of rideshare accident claims in Florida, ensuring that our clients' rights are protected and that they receive the compensation they deserve.

Understanding Florida’s No-Fault Insurance System

Florida operates under a no-fault insurance system, which means that after an accident, your own insurance company will typically cover your medical bills and lost wages, regardless of who was at fault. However, this does not preclude you from seeking further compensation, especially if the accident results in serious injury or significant loss.

Ridesharing and Liability: The Three Periods

Ridesharing drivers are considered independent contractors rather than employees of the ridesharing company. This distinction is crucial when determining liability. Liability in ridesharing accidents is often contingent upon what the driver was doing at the time of the accident, which is categorized into three periods:

Period 1

The driver is logged into the app but has not yet accepted a ride request. If an accident occurs during this time, the ridesharing company’s limited liability coverage may apply, in addition to the driver’s personal insurance.

Period 2

The driver has accepted a ride request and is en route to pick up the passenger. During this period, the ridesharing company’s insurance coverage is more substantial.

Period 3

The passenger is in the rideshare vehicle. The ridesharing company’s $1 million liability policy is in full effect until the passenger is safely at their destination.

Determining Fault in a Ridesharing Accident

In Florida, determining fault involves establishing negligence. A driver – whether a rideshare operator or another motorist – is negligent if they fail to exercise reasonable care, resulting in harm to another person. In a ridesharing context, several parties could be liable:

Evidence and Investigation

At Heintz Law Firm, we conduct a comprehensive investigation to determine liability. This includes:

Florida’s Comparative Negligence Rule

It’s also important to note that Florida follows a comparative negligence rule, meaning that if you are partially at fault for the accident, your compensation may be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Common Injuries from a Rideshare Accident

Rideshare accidents, much like any vehicular accidents, can result in a range of injuries to passengers, drivers, and other involved parties. At Heintz Law, we have seen firsthand the impact these injuries can have on the lives of individuals. Some of the most common injuries we encounter include:

  1. Whiplash and Neck Injuries: These are often caused by the sudden jolt of a collision, leading to pain, stiffness, and reduced range of motion.
  2. Head Injuries: Traumatic brain injuries, concussions, and other head traumas can occur from hitting a window, the seat in front, or from flying debris.
  3. Broken Bones: The force of an impact can lead to fractures, which may be simple, requiring a cast, or more severe, necessitating surgical intervention.
  4. Lacerations and Bruises: Sharp objects, broken glass, or blunt force can cause cuts and bruising, which may lead to significant blood loss or require stitches.
  5. Back and Spinal Cord Injuries: Damage to the spine can have serious consequences, including chronic pain or even paralysis.
  6. Internal Injuries: The impact of a collision can cause internal bleeding and organ damage, which might not be immediately apparent after the accident.
  7. Psychological Trauma: Accidents can lead to emotional distress, such as anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and depression.
  8. Soft Tissue Injuries: Muscles, tendons, and ligaments can be stretched or torn in an accident, leading to long-term pain and disability.
  9. Burns: Fires, explosions, or contact with hot surfaces or chemicals can cause burns, which may require extensive treatment.
  10. Loss of Limbs: In severe cases, an accident may result in the amputation of limbs either during the incident or as a necessary medical intervention afterward.

If you or a loved one has suffered from any of these injuries as a result of a rideshare accident, it is crucial to seek both medical attention and legal counsel. At Heintz Law, we understand the physical, emotional, and financial toll these injuries can take. Our experienced team is dedicated to ensuring that you receive the compensation you need to cover medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

How a Rideshare Accident Lawyer Can Help

At Heintz Law, our rideshare accident lawyers specialize in helping victims navigate the aftermath of an accident with clarity and ease. Here's how we can help you:

  1. Case Evaluation: We'll analyze the details of your accident to identify the responsible parties and determine the best course of action.
  2. Insurance Negotiations: Our team will handle all communications with insurance companies to ensure you receive the full compensation you're entitled to.
  3. Legal Representation: If your case goes to court, we'll provide robust legal representation, advocating for your rights every step of the way.
  4. Contingency Fee Basis: You won't pay any legal fees unless we win your case, allowing you to seek justice without financial worry.
  5. Personalized Service: We give each case the personalized attention it deserves, tailoring our approach to meet your specific needs.

If you've been involved in a rideshare accident, contact Heintz Law for a free consultation. Let us take care of the legal details while you focus on your recovery.

Injured in a Rideshare Accident? Take Action Now with Heintz Law Firm

If you’ve been involved in a rideshare accident, the path to recovery can be fraught with legal complexities and insurance challenges. But you don't have to navigate it alone. At Heintz Law Firm, we are committed to standing by your side, offering expert legal guidance and robust advocacy to ensure you receive the justice and compensation you deserve.

Don’t wait for the insurance companies to dictate the outcome of your situation. Take control by reaching out to our experienced legal team today. We’ll evaluate your case with the attention to detail it deserves, strategize the best course of action, and fight tirelessly for your rights.

Contact Heintz Law Firm now for a free, no-obligation consultation. Let us help you move forward from this unexpected event with confidence and peace of mind.


What should I do immediately after a rideshare accident?

Ensure your safety first, then seek medical attention, even if injuries are not apparent. Document the scene with photos and gather information from all parties involved. Report the accident to the rideshare company and contact Heintz Law as soon as possible.

How long do I have to file a claim after a rideshare accident in Florida?

The statute of limitations for personal injury claims in Florida is generally four years from the date of the accident. However, it's best to act quickly to ensure the best outcome for your case.

Can I still file a claim if I'm partially at fault for the accident?

Yes, Florida follows a comparative negligence rule, which means you can potentially recover damages even if you're partially at fault, though your recovery may be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Will I have to go to court for my rideshare accident claim?

Many cases are settled out of court. However, if necessary, Heintz Law is prepared to represent you in court to ensure you receive fair compensation.

How much does it cost to hire Heintz Law for a rideshare accident case?

We operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning you pay no upfront fees. Our payment is contingent upon winning your case.

What compensation can I recover in a rideshare accident claim?

You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages related to the accident.

How can Heintz Law help me with my rideshare accident claim?

We provide comprehensive legal support, from case evaluation and insurance negotiations to courtroom representation if needed, all tailored to your unique situation.

How do I start the process with Heintz Law if I've been in a rideshare accident?

Contact us for a free consultation to discuss your case. We'll guide you through the next steps and how we can assist you.

When to Get a Lawyer After a Car Accident

Getting into an auto accident is a distressing experience that can overwhelm you about the next steps. While insurance claims and police reports are standard courses of action, you may wonder whether you should also consult a car accident lawyer. The simple answer is yes, it's often a good idea to consult a legal professional, but the timing can vary depending on various factors. But when should you get a lawyer after a car accident? Let's dive in and learn more.

When to Get a Lawyer After a Car Accident

When to Get a Lawyer After a Car Accident

Getting into a car accident can be a traumatic experience, leaving you with physical injuries and emotional distress. But when should you consider seeking legal help? Knowing when to get a car accident lawyer can significantly protect your rights and ensure fair compensation for your damages.

Severe Injuries or Fatalities

Consult a personal injury lawyer immediately if your accident results in severe injuries or fatalities. A lawyer can guide you through the intricate legal implications, including issues related to liability, insurance, and potential lawsuits.

Types of Car Accident Injuries

Car accidents can result in a wide variety of injuries, ranging from minor to severe and life-threatening. The nature and extent of injuries can depend on various factors, such as the speed at which the collision occurred, the angle of impact, the type of vehicles involved, and whether or not occupants were wearing seat belts. Here is a list of some common types of car accident injuries:

This list is not exhaustive but covers many of the common types of injuries that can occur in car accidents. Always seek immediate medical attention if you are involved in a vehicle collision to properly diagnose and treat any injuries you may have sustained.

Liability is Unclear or Shared

If it's unclear who was at fault or if multiple parties are involved, a lawyer can help you navigate the murky waters of shared responsibility and fight to ensure you're not unfairly burdened.

Insurance Company Issues

If the insurance company denies your claim or tries to offer a lowball settlement, an attorney can help you negotiate and understand your options.

Legal Summon or Lawsuit

If you've been issued a legal summon or sued, consult a lawyer immediately to discuss your legal options and formulate a strategy.

What is a Personal Injury Lawyer?

A Personal Injury Lawyer is a legal professional who specializes in representing individuals who have suffered physical or emotional harm due to the negligence or intentional actions of another person, entity, or organization. These lawyers practice in an area of law known as "tort law," which includes both negligent acts as well as intentional acts. Personal injury lawyers aim to secure compensation for their clients to cover losses such as medical expenses, lost wages, and to provide compensation for pain and suffering.

Key Roles of a Personal Injury Lawyer:

Client Consultation

Personal injury lawyers typically offer a free initial consultation to discuss the facts of your case and determine whether you have a valid claim. This is an opportunity for you to understand your legal options and for the lawyer to assess the potential success of your case.

Investigation and Fact-Finding

Once retained, your lawyer will conduct an in-depth investigation to collect all relevant information, such as accident reports, witness statements, and medical records. This often involves working with experts in fields like accident reconstruction or medical evaluation.

Pleadings and Filing Lawsuits

If a settlement cannot be reached with the other party's insurance company, a personal injury lawyer will file a lawsuit on your behalf. This involves drafting a series of legal documents outlining your case and the damages you are seeking.

Negotiation and Settlement

Often, personal injury cases are settled before they go to trial. Your lawyer will negotiate with the defendant’s insurance company or legal team to reach a fair settlement. This involves skillful negotiation tactics and a deep understanding of what a reasonable compensation package should include.

Representation in Court

If a case does go to trial, your personal injury lawyer will represent you in court. They will present evidence, question witnesses, and make arguments to the judge and jury to advocate for your right to compensation.

Distribution of Compensation

Once a settlement is reached or a verdict is given, your lawyer will oversee the distribution of the compensation, ensuring that all medical bills, legal fees, and other expenses are covered before you receive your share.

Types of Cases Handled

Personal injury lawyers often handle a variety of cases, including but not limited to:

How Much Does a Car Accident Lawyer Cost?

Personal injury lawyers usually work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid if you win your case. The fee is typically a percentage of the compensation awarded to you, allowing those without the funds for legal fees to still seek justice and compensation.

Contact Heintz Law Firm Today

When you've been involved in an auto accident, it's often better to consult a lawyer sooner rather than too late. Whether dealing with minor injuries, negotiating with insurance companies, or facing legal action, having a lawyer on your side can make a significant difference.

At Heintz Firm in Bradenton, Florida, we specialize in personal injury and auto accident cases, offering you the expertise and advice you need to navigate an accident's aftermath. Contact us today to discuss your situation and understand your legal options.

Car Accident Lawyer FAQs

Being involved in a car accident can be a traumatizing and confusing experience. Many people have questions about the legal aspects of dealing with the aftermath of a car accident. Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) that people commonly have, along with answers from a legal perspective.

Q1: When should I consult a car accident lawyer?

Answer: It is advisable to consult a car accident lawyer as soon as possible after the accident. If you have sustained injuries, are facing complications with your insurance claim, or if the liability is not clear, a lawyer can help you navigate these challenges effectively.

Q2: What does a car accident lawyer do?

Answer: A car accident lawyer represents your interests in negotiations with the insurance company, gathers evidence to substantiate your claims, and may file a lawsuit on your behalf if a satisfactory settlement is not achieved. They can also guide you through the legal processes, ensuring all deadlines are met.

Q3: How do car accident lawyers charge for their services?

Answer: Most car accident lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid if you win your case. The fee is typically a percentage of the settlement or court award.

Q4: Should I talk to the insurance company before speaking with a lawyer?

Answer: It’s generally not advisable. Insurance companies often aim to minimize payouts. Consulting a lawyer before giving statements or accepting any offers can help protect your rights and potentially secure a better settlement.

Q5: What information should I collect at the scene of the accident?

Answer: Gather contact and insurance details from all parties involved, take pictures of the accident scene, and collect the names and contact information of any witnesses. A police report is also valuable.

Q6: What if the other driver is uninsured or underinsured?

Answer: Your lawyer can guide you on how to proceed with your own insurance company to cover your damages or explore other legal avenues for compensation.

Q7: How long do I have to file a claim?

Answer: Time limits, known as statutes of limitations, vary by jurisdiction but often range from one to three years for personal injury claims arising from car accidents. Consult a lawyer promptly to ensure you do not miss important deadlines.

Q8: Can I still claim if the accident was partially my fault?

Answer: Many states follow comparative negligence rules, which allow you to claim damages even if you were partially at fault. However, your compensation may be reduced by your percentage of fault.

Q9: What types of compensation can I expect?

Answer: You may be eligible for various types of compensation, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage.

Q10: What if my case goes to court?

Answer: If a fair settlement can’t be reached, your lawyer may advise taking the case to court. Here, evidence will be presented before a judge or jury, who will then determine fault and the amount of compensation you are entitled to, if any.


Personal injury insurance claims are complicated and saying the wrong thing to the wrong person can reduce the value of your claim. After your initial call to your insurance company, you can expect a call from the other driver’s insurance adjuster. Saying the wrong thing to that person could be disastrous and most personal injury victims are unprepared for what they should and should not say.

If you have hired a personal injury lawyer, you can likely avoid this often awkward phone call. Simply ask the insurance representative to contact your lawyer for case details. Even better? Hire the experienced personal injury lawyers at Heintz Law to educate you on the process and fight for you.

Read on to learn about nine tips that can help you deal with the other insurance company. It can be overwhelming, but it’s better to be prepared and know what to expect.

Never Admit Fault

Never admit fault or say that you are sorry. The insurance company’s adjuster is looking for words that indicate fault or an admission of negligence in order to reduce the value of your claim.

Don’t say anything that would suggest you were the cause of the accident or that you have remorse for your actions.

Prepare to Write Down Everything Said

If possible, you should jot down every detail in writing during the call. If you cannot write during the call, get to pen and paper afterward and take down everything you remember. Having your record of what happened can keep you from getting tricked by an insurance company. Have proof of the actions you took and the words you said.

Do Not Allow Recording of Your Statement

You should never permit the insurance company to record your statement. There is a high chance that they will try to use your own words against you.

The insurance contact should ask, but you should ensure that they do not record you by clearly asking them not to do so. Avoiding such a recording will help if you mess up your words or recollect details incorrectly.

Ask Who Is Speaking

Know who you are speaking to so you can work with that information later if an issue arises. There are a few things you should ask them and takedown on the phone during situations involving car accident insurance.

You might ask this individual for:

Once you have this information, you can better track your case and have a way to report them if something goes wrong.

Don’t Offer Personal Info

Insurance companies do not need to know all your personal information. There are only a few items that you should give them if they call.

You can share:

You should not give them your employment status or any personal information beyond that. If they push for more, kindly inform them that you do not need to provide these items. This action will prevent anything from being used against you during situations involving car accident insurance.

Stick With Basic Details

When describing the car crash, stick to the basic details. Do not go into more depth than necessary, as more information may lead to your words being used against you.

You can tell them about:

If they push more, inform them that is all you can share and that the case is pending.

Don’t Discuss Injuries

If asked how you’re feeling, decline to comment. Don’t express that you’re feeling fine or that you’re better than before. Further, don’t comment about your injuries or share any details – especially before you’ve had a full diagnosis from a medical professional, as your diagnosis may be worse than initially perceived.

Don’t Accept Settlement Offer

The initial offer is rarely enough to cover your damages. If they offer you an amount right away, do not take it.

By holding out, you can increase the chances that you will get all of your injuries and damages covered. Car and medical repairs can be costly. Do not get scammed into taking less than you deserve by agreeing to an offer over the phone.

Stay Calm

Lastly, remember to stay calm. These callers are people just as much as you are. Avoid losing your cool and keep everything cordial for this short call. Being aware of what to expect and using the tips above will help you stay calm and collected, which should help your outcome with car accident insurance situations.

Count on Heintz Law

Insurance claims are complicated and saying the wrong thing to the other insurance company may reduce the value of your claim. Be prepared for that call or better, hire an experienced personal injury lawyer at Heintz Law to help determine the best legal strategy for your case. You can divert any awkward insurance calls to your lawyer, and protect the value of your claim. Make Heintz Law your experienced Florida personal injury lawyer. They will work aggressively to protect your rights and to get you the compensation you deserve. Schedule your free initial consultation to discuss your case by calling 941-748-2916 or filling out our contact form. We’ve helped accident victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida receive compensation for their injuries. Call us for a free consultation now at the number above or contact us online.

905 6th Avenue West
Bradenton, FL 34205

Phone: 941-748-2916
Fax: 941-746-4281
Map & Directions

By Appointment Only

2033 Main St, Ste 406
Sarasota, FL 34237

Phone: 941-238-0093
Fax: 941-746-4281
Map & Directions

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