Uber and Lyft and similar ridesharing services have quite literally transformed the public transportation industry. Ridesharing services are fast outpacing traditional taxi services and are replacing use of other public transportation options in many areas.
Here in California, ridesharing services are adding traffic to the already congested roadways even as they serve a need many people have. Ridesharing drivers are having accidents and some of those accidents are serious.
If you have been involved in an Uber or Lyft accident that has caused you injury, you will likely need a ridesharing accident lawyer in Los Angeles to help you seek reimbursement for your expenses. Find out how to locate a qualified attorney in this post.
What to Look for in the Best Personal Injury Lawyer for Ridesharing Accidents
Unless you have a background in law, you may assume that anyone who practices law can handle your ridesharing injury case.
This is a common assumption and it is also incorrect. There are many specialty areas and branches of the law, of which traffic law is only one.
Some lawyers will practice throughout their whole career and never handle a traffic law case. Other lawyers spend all day, every day just handling traffic law cases and claims. And some lawyers are now choosing to specialize in ridesharing traffic law, a particularly dynamic and fast-evolving sub-specialty of traffic law where the law itself is often more vague than clear.
Ultimately, you want to choose the best personal injury lawyer who is steeped in the details of California traffic law and the still-evolving ridesharing accident law field to handle your Uber or Lyft accident injury case. The more experienced your new attorney is, the faster your claim can get settled so you can get back to your regularly scheduled life.
This way, you know the attorney already knows the ins and outs of traffic law precedents, rules and regulations relating to California auto accidents in general and ridesharing accidents in particular.
Where to Seek a Ridesharing Accident Attorney in California
There are several ways to find the best ridesharing accident lawyer for you.
Perhaps the easiest way is to visit the State Bar of California website. This site has a listing of all attorneys that have passed the bar exam and are licensed to practice law in the state. You can also use this website as a resource to check the credentials of any attorney you have learned about that you are thinking about hiring.
Another good way to find a ridesharing accident attorney is to look for recent press about ridesharing accidents in California and the lawyers who represented those cases. Then you can go to the State Bar of California website to verify their credentials.
Still another good way to find a ridesharing accident injury attorney is to do an internet search using these keywords and adding your local geographic area. For example, you could search on “ridesharing accident injury attorney Los Angeles California” and then visit each law firm’s website to learn more.
What to Look For When Hiring a Ridesharing Traffic Lawyer
You want to look for certain key elements when you are seeking the best personal injury lawyer to handle your ridesharing case.
1. Verify the attorney has passed the bar and is licensed in California to practice.
First, of course, you want to verify that the attorney has passed the bar exam and is licensed to practice in the state of California.
2. Find out how much of the lawyer’s caseload is related to traffic law.
Next, you want to check to see what percentage of the attorney’s workload is related to traffic law and specifically to ridesharing traffic law.
3. Check to see what recent past customer testimonials say about that lawyer.
After checking this, you want to look to see what recent past customer testimonials have to say about their experience of working with that specific attorney. While there will always be some negative reviews floating around, if the vast majority of reviews you find are positive, this is a good sign.
4. Find out if the attorney offers a free initial consultation.
Next, take a look to see what their policy is for an initial consultation. You should never be asked to pay for your initial consultation with an attorney. This is the time period when you can sit with the attorney, share the details of your case and find out whether you have a case, what your case might be worth and what may be involved in closing your case.
A reputable attorney won’t take your case if they don’t think they can be of help to you. For this reason, the industry standard is to offer a free no-obligation initial consultation so you can talk and decide whether to move forward.
5. Evaluate the law firm’s support staff and customer service policy.
Finally, it is time to contact the attorney to schedule your free no-obligation initial consultation. This is your time to evaluate their customer service, support staff and process to handle new clients.
The attorney will only be as effective as their support staff – it always takes a team to successfully handle a ridesharing case. Be sure the attorney can see you in a reasonable period of time (within a few days time) and that you are given everything you need to prepare for the meeting without having to ask for it.
When you arrive for your meeting, notice what the law firm’s office is like. Is it warm and inviting? Are you greeted promptly and seen right away at your appointed time? Or are you ignored, overlooked or made to wait? Whatever your initial reception is like, this is likely to be how it is all the way through your case.
Choosing Your Ridesharing Accident Attorney
Even if every other aspect checks out, you won’t be able to make your final decision until after you have met the attorney face to face (or talked via phone if your medical condition requires it).
You have to feel comfortable with the attorney you choose and know they will be available to you outside of office hours and immediately receptive to new information you may about your claim.
If you feel comfortable talking with the attorney and sharing the details of your case, this is a good sign that you may have found the right lawyer to take your ridesharing case and settle it in your favor.
Do You Need a Ridesharing Accident Lawyer in Los Angeles?
Ridesharing accidents are on the rise in the state of California and elsewhere. Unfortunately, cases are increasing faster than California traffic law is evolving to handle them. This means many such cases can get hung up in court as teams of lawyers hired by the ridesharing giants argue that they are not liable for the actions of their contract drivers.
If you or someone you love needs an expert, knowledgable attorney to handle an Uber/Lyft accident injury claim, West Coast Trial Lawyers can help. Contact us today to schedule your free no-obligation initial consultation.