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Food Delivery Driver Accident Attorney Los Angeles

Many Los Angeles residents drive for apps like Uber Eats, Door Dash, Grub Hub, and others to supplement their incomes and make ends meet. While food delivery can be a lucrative side gig, it comes with some risks. Any time you drive, you risk a motor vehicle collision. Since food delivery drivers might spend hours delivering food when they work, they must take additional precautions to avoid collisions. However, even if you follow all traffic laws and use defensive driving strategies, you can't control the actions of other motorists around you.What options do you have if someone collides with your vehicle while you are delivering food? The experienced food delivery accident attorneys at the Los Angeles law firm of Steven M. Sweat, Personal Injury Lawyers, APC can help you understand your options and the coverages that might cover your medical expenses, property losses, and non-economic damages when someone causes an accident while you are working for a food delivery app.

Understanding Food Delivery Apps

Food delivery apps are online applications you can download to your smartphone or mobile device to order food from participating restaurants. In many cases, the restaurants do not have delivery services but instead partner with the apps. When you place your order, a food delivery driver who drives for the app will pick up your food and deliver it. Customers pay for the food plus a delivery fee and can also choose to tip their drivers within the app.Like rideshare drivers, food delivery drivers are independent contractors rather than directly employed by the apps. This means the food delivery app will not be vicariously liable if a food delivery driver causes an accident while they are working. However, food delivery apps provide insurance to cover the damages third parties suffer when a delivery driver causes a wreck while delivering food. This insurance might also be available to food delivery drivers when third parties injure them without insurance or with insufficient liability coverage as explained below.

Potentially Liable Parties in a Food Delivery Driver Accident

Food delivery driver accidents can be complex because several parties and potential recovery sources might be at fault. In an accident involving a food delivery driver, the following parties might be liable:

  • Food delivery app driver
  • Third-party motorist
  • Entity responsible for maintaining the road
  • Defective car part manufacturer

In rare cases, the app might be directly liable if it contracted with an incompetent, unsafe driver without performing an adequate driving record and background check. This type of liability is called negligent hiring or negligent retention liability.

California Minimum Liability Insurance Requirements

California is an at-fault state for auto accidents. This means you will file a claim with the at-fault motorist's insurance when you are injured in an accident.The minimum liability auto insurance requirements in California are found in Cal. Veh. Code 16056. Until Jan. 1, 2025, the current insurance requirements are quite low and include:

  • $15,000 bodily injury coverage for one injured person
  • $30,000 bodily injury coverage per accident for two or more injured people
  • $5,000 property damage coverage

These limits are seldom sufficient to pay for a seriously injured victim's injuries, property damage, and other losses, which has led the California Legislature to amend the law and increase the limits beginning Jan. 1, 2025, as follows:

  • $30,000 bodily injury coverage for one injured person
  • $60,000 bodily injury coverage per accident for two or more injured people
  • $15,000 property damage coverage

Even with these increased limits, seriously injured accident victims might still not have access to sufficient coverage for their losses.Auto insurers must offer uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) when they issue auto insurance policies. Any driver needs to add UM/UIM coverage because it protects motorists involved in accidents with uninsured or underinsured drivers. Minimum UM/UIM coverage in California is $15,000/$30,000/$3,500.Food delivery apps also provide UM/UIM coverage for drivers involved in accidents caused by third parties.

Food Delivery App Insurance

Food delivery apps like Uber Eats and DoorDash provide coverage based on the phase you are in when an accident occurs as follows:

  • When the app is turned off - Your personal insurance will apply. The food delivery app's insurance is not available if you are involved in an accident when you are not driving for the delivery app.
  • When the app is on, and you're waiting for an order - Uber Eats provides third-party liability coverage of $50,000/$100,000/$25,000 if you cause an accident while waiting to receive an order and cause an accident. If you are struck by a third party or someone uninsured/underinsured, Uber provides UM/UIM coverage.
  • When you are en route to pick up or deliver an order - Uber Eats provides up to $1 million in third-party bodily injury coverage during this phase. It also provides coverage of up to $1 million in UM/UIM insurance if someone else is at fault and is uninsured or underinsured. Uber also provides contingent property damage coverage to pay for the damage to your car with a $2,500 deductible. This coverage will kick in after your insurance.
Possible Recovery Sources

Following an accident while you were delivering food for a delivery app, several potential recovery sources might apply, including:

Other Driver's Insurance

If another motorist is at fault, you will file a claim with their insurance company. That insurance company will be responsible for paying for your losses up to the driver's policy limits. However, suppose the other driver only has the minimum liability auto insurance coverage. In that case, they might not have enough to pay for your medical bills, wage losses, property damage, and non-economic losses.

Personal Auto Insurance

If you were at fault for the accident, you could file a claim with your personal auto insurance if you have full coverage. You'll likely have to pay a deductible. If you caused the accident while you had the app turned on, the injured party can file a third-party claim with the food delivery app insurer to recover damages. What will be available will depend on whether you were waiting for an order or were already en route to pick the order up or deliver it as described previously.

Defective Part Manufacturer

Some car accidents happen because of defective car parts that fail. Your accident attorney will investigate your case to identify all potential causes. If a defective part fails and causes your crash, you might file a claim against the manufacturer.

Municipality That Negligently Maintained the Roads

If broken asphalt, a pothole, or another road defect contributed to your crash, the entity responsible for maintaining the road might be partially liable. Your attorney will investigate to determine all potentially liable parties.

Food Delivery App Insurance

The food delivery app for which you drive might provide coverage to compensate you if the at-fault driver was uninsured or underinsured. This insurance would kick in after the at-fault driver's policy paid up to its limits or in full if the motorist was uninsured. What the food app might cover will depend on the phase your app was in when your accident occurred.

Talk to an Experienced Food Delivery App Accident Lawyer

If you were seriously injured in an accident while delivering food for a delivery app, you should consult a lawyer at the Los Angeles law firm of Steven M. Sweat, Personal Injury Lawyers, APC. We provide free consultations and can discuss your claim's merits and your options. Call us at 1-866-966-5240 to schedule your free case evaluation.

Client Reviews
I have known Steven for some time now and when his services were required he jumped in and took control of my cases. I had two and they were handled with the utmost professionalism and courtesy. He went the extra mile regardless of the bumps in the road. I can not see me using any other attorney and I would recommend him to any of my family and friends. Josie A.
Steven was vital during our most trying time. He was referred by a friend after an accident that involved a family member. While he was critical and lying in the hospital, Steven was kind, patient and knowledgeable about what we were going through. Following our loss, Steven became a tough and aggressive negotiator and made sure that we receive a huge compensation. I would refer Steven in fact, this happened 2 years ago and I still speak highly of his service. Cheryl S.
Mr. Sweat is a pitbull in the courtroom as well as settlement negotiations - You can't have a better equipped attorney in your corner! It is a pleasure working as colleagues together on numerous cases. He can get the job done. Jonathan K.
Because of Steven Sweat, my medical support was taken care of. Plus, I had more money to spare for my other bills. Steven is not only an excellent personal injury lawyer, providing the best legal advice, but also a professional lawyer who goes beyond his call of duty just to help his clients! He stood up for me and helped me get through the process. I would definitely recommend. I couldn't think of any better lawyer than him. MiraJane C.
I must tell anyone, if you need a great attorney, Steve sweat is the guy! I had an awful car accident and had no idea where to turn. He had so much to deal with because my accident was a 4 car pile up. Not to mention all the other cars were behind me and they were not wanting to settle in any way! He never stopped working for me and had my best interest at heart! Audra W.
I believe I made the best choice with Steven M Sweat, Personal Injury. I was very reluctant to go forward with my personal injury claim. I had a valid claim and I needed a professional attorney to handle it. I felt so much better when I let Steven take my case. His team did everything right and I am very satisfied. Stia P.
I have to say that Steve has been exemplary! I met Steve at a point with my case that I was ready to give up. He took the time and dealt with all of my concerns. Most importantly, he was present and listened to what I was going through. He was able to turn things around, put me and my case on the right track! The results were better that expected! Highly recommend!! Cody A.