Food delivery drivers are becoming more and more common these days, with more and more people wanting to enjoy restaurant-quality food without ever leaving their homes. Whenever you go for a drive, you are probably going to pass at least one food delivery driver running an order for Uber Eats, Grubhub, Postmates, or DoorDash customers, especially around lunch and dinner times in your area. With so many food couriers zipping between homes and eateries, your chances of getting hit by a negligent one are probably higher than you might think.
What are you supposed to do if you are in an accident caused by an at-fault food delivery driver? Can you file a claim against them for your damages? Or are you supposed to sue the food delivery company that let them use their app to pick up delivery contracts? The answer might be: “both.”
Was the Food Delivery Driver Working?
Whether or not the Uber Eats, Postmates, etc. driver who hit you was actively working can dramatically change how your injury claim looks and develops. As we discussed in a previous blog entry, Uber and Lyft can distance themselves from one of their rideshare drivers if they were not using a rideshare app at the time of their crash. The same rings true for food delivery drivers who pick up orders from eateries and bring them to a hungry customer elsewhere. If they are not using the app, i.e. not working when they crashed into you, then the food-share company that usually provides their income is probably free of any liability.
At that point, you would have to handle the situation as you would any other car accident claim. You would need to exchange insurance and identifying information with the food delivery driver and prepare to file against their insurance provider through a plan they purchased themselves.
Food-Share Company Insurance Policies
If the at-fault food delivery driver was actively using an app to accept and complete a job, then some of your damages could be covered by the food-share or food delivery company. It depends on the specifics of the insurance coverage they provide their drivers.
For example: DoorDash provides an insurance policy to its drivers, but there are many caveats to it. A driver will usually be covered by DoorDash’s policy only if they (a) have their own individually purchased auto insurance coverage that meets their state’s minimum requirements, and (b) had already picked up a food order and were bringing it to a customer. The coverage provided by DoorDash in eligible situations only applies to damages caused to other parties – which means you if you were hit by a DoorDash driver – and only to cover what has not already been supplied by the driver’s own insurance. Also, if the DoorDash driver was en route to pick up the food, then they are likely not covered by the company’s policy.
Does Uber Eats Cover Their Drivers?
Uber Eats has quickly gobbled up a share of the food delivery service market, so you might be more likely to encounter – or literally run into – a driver using the Uber Eats app than any others. It is worth taking a look at how they insure their drivers, just in case you are unfortunate enough to be hit by one.
The Uber-provided insurance coverage for Uber Eats drivers can be divided into three sections:
- Period 1: When an Uber Eats driver is not using the app, you must file against their own auto insurance company and possibly your own uninsured or underinsured (UM/UIM) insurance policy.
- Period 2: When an Uber Eats driver is using the app and looking for a new food delivery job, Uber provides flat insurance coverage of $50,000 for bodily injury per person, $100,000 for bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 for property damage per accident.
- Period 3: Once food is picked up and ready to be delivered, an Uber Eats driver is covered by Uber’s now-famous policy that can provide up to $1 million of liability coverage per accident.
It is worth noting that Uber could change its policy without notification. The limits you see described here are not guaranteed.
Need Help After a Food Delivery Driver Hits You?
Figuring out who should answer for your damages after being hurt in a food delivery driver accident is difficult. Are you supposed to file a claim against the driver, the food-share company that gave them their job, or both? Rather than messing with those details yourself when you should be resting, turn to the Colorado food delivery accident attorneys of Jorgensen, Brownell & Pepin, P.C. We can manage your claim from start to finish, including figuring out who is liable for your damages and why.
Call us at (720) 809-8310 now to get more information during an initial consultation.