Rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft have innovated travel, providing an efficient and cost-effective alternative to traditional taxis. However, with the growth of rideshare usage comes a rise in rideshare accidents. Understanding the causes, consequences, and legal recourse available is crucial for passengers and drivers involved in rideshare-related accidents. A rideshare accident attorney can guide you in navigating this complex landscape.

The Rising Frequency of Rideshare Accidents

The convenience of rideshare services has led to a significant increase in their usage. According to recent statistics, rideshare trips have grown exponentially, leading to a corresponding rise in Uber and Lyft accidents. A Research Brief released by the University of Chicago  found that the introduction of ridesharing accounts for a roughly 3 percent annual increase in traffic fatalities. This uptick in accidents highlights the pressing need for passengers to know the risks and their legal options.

An article published in the University of Illinois UIC Today found that one-third of rideshare drivers surveyed in a new study reported being involved in a crash while working. 

Common Causes of Rideshare Accidents

Several factors contribute to the frequency of Lyft and Uber accidents. Understanding these causes can help passengers stay vigilant and improve safety.

  1. Distracted Driving: Rideshare drivers rely heavily on their smartphones for navigation, accepting rides, and communicating with passengers. This constant use of mobile devices can result in distracted driving, increasing the risk of accidents.
  2. Fatigue: Many rideshare drivers work long hours, often juggling multiple jobs. This can result in fatigue, which impairs reaction times and decision-making abilities, increasing the likelihood of accidents.
  3. Speeding: Some rideshare drivers exceed speed limits to complete more rides and earn higher fares, which can lead to dangerous driving conditions.
  4. Inexperience: A lack of driver experience or unfamiliarity with local roads and traffic patterns can contribute to errors and accidents.
  5. Poor Vehicle Maintenance: Unlike traditional taxi services, rideshare drivers are accountable for their vehicle upkeep. Lack of periodic maintenance can result in mechanical failures and accidents. 

Consequences of Rideshare Accidents

Rideshare accidents can have severe consequences, affecting both passengers and drivers.

  • Injuries: Passengers, drivers, and other road users can suffer various injuries. This can range from lacerations and bruises to critical, life-altering conditions such as traumatic brain injuries or spinal cord damage.
  • Financial Loss: Medical bills, lost wages, and property damage can accumulate quickly, placing a significant financial burden on those involved.
  • Emotional Trauma: The emotional effect of an accident can be profound, leading to anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
  • Legal Complications: Determining liability in a rideshare crash could be complex, involving multiple parties such as the driver, the company, other drivers, and insurance companies 

Your Rights as an Uber or Lyft Passenger

As a passenger in a rideshare vehicle, you have specific rights, especially if you suffer an auto accident injury:

  1. Right to Safety: You have the right to a safe ride. If a driver’s negligence or misconduct causes an accident, you can hold them accountable.
  2. Right to Compensation: If you are hurt in an auto accident, you can fight for compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
  3. Right to Legal Representation: You have the right to hire the best car accident lawyer to assist with your case and assure you receive fair compensation for injuries. 

Steps to Take After a Rideshare Accident

If you find yourself injured in a rideshare accident, it’s critical you take the following steps to safeguard your rights:

  1. Seek Medical Attention: Your health is the absolute priority. Though your injuries may seem minor, get a thorough medical examination. There may be hidden or more severe injuries.
  2. Report the Accident: Notify the rideshare company about the accident through their app or customer service. This establishes an official record of the incident.
  3. Document the Scene of the Accident: If physically able, take photos of the scene, vehicle damage, and any visible injuries. Collect contact information from witnesses.
  4. Gather Driver Information: Obtain the driver’s name, contact details, insurance information, and vehicle details.
  5. File a Police Report: Ensure a police report is filed, as it is an official accident record, which can be crucial for your case.
  6. Consult a Rideshare Accident Attorney: Contact an auto accident attorney in Wilkes-Barre to examine your case and discuss legal options. 

Frequently Asked Rideshare Accident Questions and Answers 

Who is liable in a rideshare accident case?

Liability can be complex in rideshare accidents. It may involve the rideshare driver, another driver, vehicle or parts manufacturer, or even the rideshare company. A rideshare accident lawyer can help determine the responsible parties. 

What kind of compensation can I receive?

It may be possible to seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage. The amount depends on the severity of your injuries and the specifics of your case.

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

The statute of limitations for personal injury claims varies by state. Pennsylvania has a two-year statute of limitations on personal injury lawsuits. It’s vital to consult with a rideshare accident lawyer promptly to avoid missing the deadline.

Do I need an attorney to handle my claim?

While not legally required, hiring a personal injury attorney can considerably improve the likelihood of appropriate compensation. They can navigate the legal complexities and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. 

A Rideshare Accident Attorney Can Protect Your Rights

Hiring a rideshare accident attorney is crucial for five reasons:

  1. Experience in Rideshare Accident Cases: Attorneys who focus on rideshare accidents understand the unique legal issues and can provide knowledgeable guidance.
  2. Determining Liability: Establishing fault is the first step in seeking compensation. Fault may rest with the rideshare driver, another motorist, a trucking company, or possibly the rideshare company if negligence can be proven. An accident claims lawyer can help.
  3. Negotiation: Filing a claim can be complicated, and insurance companies may attempt to minimize payouts. Rideshare collision lawyers are skilled negotiators who can deal with insurance corporations to ensure you receive fair compensation.
  4. Representation in a Personal Injury Lawsuit: If your case goes to court, a Pennsylvania accident attorney can represent you and advocate for your rights.
  5. Peace of Mind: Dealing with the aftermath of a rideshare crash is stressful. An auto accident attorney can tackle the legal complexities, enabling you to concentrate on recovery. To sum it up, an experienced rideshare lawyer can guide you through the claims procedure, negotiate with insurance, and represent you in court if necessary. 

Take Prompt Action if Involved in a Rideshare Accident

Rideshare accidents are a grim reality in our increasingly mobile world. The hidden dangers associated with these accidents highlight the importance of being informed and prepared. By understanding the causes, consequences, and legal recourse available, you can better protect yourself and your rights.

If you are injured in a rideshare accident, taking swift action and seeking professional legal advice can make a major difference in securing the compensation you deserve. Don’t let the complexities of a rideshare accident overwhelm you; contact a rideshare accident attorney in Wilkes-Barre today. The auto accident attorneys at Distasio, Kowalski, & Yelen have years of experience protecting and fighting for the rights of car accident victims. Call or email DKY Law today.

Read our latest blog to learn more about selecting a personal injury attorney for your case.



Michael J. Kowalski, a partner with DKY Law Firm, has been representing individuals and their families in personal injury matters for 30 years. These include cases involving medical malpractice, medical errors, birth injuries, and auto and truck accidents, among others. If you are injured, you want Attorney Kowalski and the DKY Law Firm fighting for you. Contact Attorney Kowalski today.




Jeffrey A. Yelen, a partner with DKY Law Firm, is an Elder Law Attorney who brings 25 years of estate planning, probate and estate litigation experience to the clients he serves. He is head of the firm’s Elder Law and Estate Services division and is highly experienced in Wills, Estates, and Trusts.  When you are searching for an Elder Law Lawyer, Attorney Yelen can provide the skilled legal representation you and your family need. Contact Attorney Yelen

Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability in the United States and stroke misdiagnosis is a major healthcare problem. Learning the risk factors and warning signs of a stroke can help you to better advocate for yourself and those you love. If you believe you or someone you’re with may be having a stroke, pay close attention to the time symptoms began. Certain treatment options may depend on the time that has passed.

Symptoms & Signs of a Stroke

  • Trouble speaking or understanding what others are saying. This might include slurring words or having difficulty understanding speech.
  • Sudden onset of a severe headache. This may be accompanied by dizziness and vomiting.
  • Paralysis, weakness, or numbness of the face, arm, or leg. This may develop suddenly and often affects just one side of the body
  • Problems seeing in one or both eyes. This might include blurred, dimmed, or double vision in one or both eyes.
  • Trouble walking. This may include dizziness, loss of coordination, or difficulty walking.
  • Fainting and confusion.

    Stroke Warning Signs

Seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the above signs of a stroke. A good test if you notice these signs in someone you’re with is remembering to act “FAST”.  FACE – Ask the person to smile. Does one side of their face droop? ARMS – Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one drift downward or is unable to rise? SPEECH – Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is their speech slurred or strange? TIME – If you observe any of these signs, it’s time to call 911 or seek immediate emergency medical help.

Understand the risk factors of a stroke 

There are many risk factors for a stroke. Some are lifestyle choices that you can control, others are medical in nature. Reduce your stroke risk by working to reduce your risk factors wherever possible. Risk factors of stroke include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity/poor diet
  • High cholesterol
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Sickle cell disease
  • Family history of stroke
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Physical inactivity
  • Heavy or binge drinking
  • Illegal drugs
  • Previous stroke or transient ischemic attack
  • Birth control pills 

As we mentioned and you can see with the risk factors, some are controllable. Working with your family doctor to keep your blood pressure and cholesterol in the normal range, as well as quitting smoking and cutting down on drinking can help. Getting active, eating healthy, staying at a healthy weight, and lowering your stress levels are all controllable and can help you reduce the risk of stroke as well.

Type of strokes

2 Main types of strokes

Ischemic Stroke

An ischemic stroke happens when a blood vessel supplying blood to your brain gets blocked by a blood clot. The majority of strokes are ischemic. Symptoms of an ischemic stroke can include many of those we mentioned above. You are more likely to have an ischemic stroke if you are over age 60, smoke, and have high blood pressure, heart disease, high cholesterol, or diabetes.

Hemorrhagic Stroke

A hemorrhagic stroke happens when bleeding in the brain damages nearby cells. The most common causes of this type of stroke are high blood pressure, injury, bleeding disorders, cocaine use, and an aneurysm. Symptoms can include intense headache, confusion, nausea or vomiting, sensitivity to light, problems with vision, and fainting.

Transient Ischemic Attack or Mini Stroke

A TMI or mini-stroke is a temporary blockage of the blood flow to your brain. The symptoms might last for just a few minutes or may last longer. The symptoms of TIA are similar to those we mentioned above under the symptoms & signs of a stroke. Risk factors can include age, obesity, smoking, family history, atrial fibrillation, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and heart disease.

Stroke Misdiagnosis 

Being better prepared and knowing the warning signs of a stroke can help you seek treatment faster. Teach your children and others in your family about FAST. Precious moments count when it comes to a stroke. When a stroke victim’s signs and symptoms have been misdiagnosed, it can lead to a tragic delay in treatment. If you believe you or a family member are the victims of stroke misdiagnosis or a delay in diagnosis and treatment on the part of a medical professional, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. A misdiagnosed stroke can have long-lasting consequences. Contact Distasio & Kowalski stroke misdiagnosis lawyers to see if you have a medical malpractice case.

Tap to learn more about Stroke Misdiagnosis.

Read a blog about the Failure to Diagnose a Stroke.

Cerebral palsy is a lifelong and serious neurological disorder that is often caused by a lack of enough oxygen reaching an infant’s brain during labor or delivery. Head trauma before, during or shortly after birth can be a cause. While not all cases of cerebral palsy are caused by medical error, some certainly are. Medical errors or medical malpractice during labor or delivery can sometimes result in hypoxia, or insufficient oxygen to the brain, or asphyxia, which is insufficient oxygen to the body. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest that 85 to 90 percent of cerebral palsy cases are congenital, or occur before or during the birth.

Cerebral palsy impairs muscle coordination and body movement. Harmful side effects of cerebral palsy can include breathing problems, trouble swallowing, speech impediment, as well as vision and hearing problems. Other side effects include cognitive impairments, seizure disorder, learning disabilities, and inability to control the bladder or bowels and more. 1 in 323 babies in the U.S. is diagnosed with cerebral palsy. This is according to the Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation.

Types of cerebral palsy

  • Spastic Cerebral Palsy – The most common form of CP, it accounts for for 70-80% of cases. Symptoms include stiff and tight muscles. Those suffering from spastic cerebral palsy may have difficulty moving from one position to another. They may have trouble controlling muscles that are needed to perform tasks such as holding an object or speaking. Spasticity is due to damage to the motor cortex of the brain before, during or after birth.
  • Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy – This form of CP is characterized by involuntary movements, such as twisting and repetitive movements, slow movements or unpredictable movements. It results from damage to the basal ganglia of the brain.
  • Ataxic Cerebral Palsy – Ataxic is characterized by shaky movements that may appear disorganized or jerky, as well as a difficulty in maintaining balance. Ataxia causes an interruption of muscle control in the arms and legs, causing a lack of balance and coordination. It has an impact on the movements required for day-to-day activities. Ataxia results from damage to the cerebellum. 

Medical errors that may result in cerebral palsy

  • Failing to properly monitor the mother or infant before, during or after childbirth.
  • Failure to identify fetal distress by not properly monitoring the fetal heart rate during labor and delivery.
  • The medical mistake of failing to identify and properly treat infections in the mother during pregnancy.
  • Delayed diagnosis and treatment of maternal medical conditions or infections.
  • Failing to identify an umbilical cord prolapse, a birth complication that occurs prior to delivery. Prolapse is when the umbilical cord drops through the open cervix into the vagina ahead of the baby. It sometimes getting trapped against the baby’s body.
  • Medical errors regarding cesarean sections. This can include delaying a cesarean section needed due to an emergency or failing to perform a cesarean section in a high-risk pregnancy. Failing to perform a C-section when the baby is too large to deliver vaginally may also cause an injury. Medical mistakes relating to C-sections can lead to serious birth injuries.
  • Medical negligence in using medical instruments or equipment. This can include the improper use of forceps or vacuum during delivery.
  • Medication errors or the uses of medication that was inappropriate or dangerous for the mother or baby.
  • Inadequate monitoring of the mother and baby when anesthesia is used.
  • Medical diagnostic errors, such as incorrect reading of test results. 

Providing a child with cerebral palsy with the appropriate care can take a toll on a family, both financially and emotionally. Cerebral palsy often requires a lifetime of care. Costly rehab, therapy and home care, as well as other medical expenses can become burdensome to an already struggling family. If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy or is exhibiting symptoms of cerebral palsy, and you suspect medical malpractice, contact an experienced birth injury attorney today for help. 

The burden of proof in birth injury cases 

It’s hard to imagine that with just a single medical error, an infant’s life can be permanently harmed. The plaintiff has the burden of proof in a birth injury case. Therefore, a plaintiff must do more than just prove that a child suffers from cerebral palsy. A medical expert is needed to testify as to the specific cause of the disability. The medical expert will also determine whether it is a result of medical error or medical negligence. A doctor or hospital failing to provide the accepted standard of care may be a factor in a cerebral palsy birth injury. Responsible medical parties in a cerebral palsy medical malpractice case can include an OB-GYN, surgeon, doctor, nurse, hospital or healthcare clinic or others.

Statute of limitations in Pennsylvania cerebral palsy cases 

If you feel your child was the victim of medical negligence or has cerebral palsy as the result of a medical error you may be entitled to compensation for those injuries, as well as resulting medical treatment. It is not too late to hold the responsible medical providers accountable for their negligent actions. A statute of limitations establishes the deadline for filing a lawsuit. If the injured victim is a minor at the time the injury or accident occurred, such as in the event of a birth injury, the statute of limitations does not begin until the victim turns 18. An injured child or minor has 2 years to file a lawsuit after they turn 18.

If your baby has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy and you believe that medical error or hospital error could have been the cause, you need to contact a medical malpractice lawyer. An experienced cerebral palsy birth injury lawyer can review the details of the case and help determine if medical negligence did cause your child’s birth injury. Medical errors leading to cerebral palsy can occur during pregnancy, labor and birth. They may also occur immediately following the birth of your baby.

Distasio & Kowalski medical malpractice lawyers

The birth injury lawyers at Distasio & Kowalski in Wilkes-Barre can help you to obtain the compensation you deserve. It is our goal to help your family overcome the lifelong difficulties associated with cerebral palsy or other birth injuries. This can include compensation for past and future medical expenses and caretaking costs, as well as for pain and suffering. We are a personal injury firm dedicated to getting injury victims the best possible legal results and holding medical professionals accountable for the harm they cause.

Read more on birth injuries and medical malpractice compensation on our website. Learn more about the early signs of cerebral palsy and screening on the CDC website.