While in the US I was driving as a Uber driver in Los Angeles to make some extra dough. It’s a pretty fun experience, you meet lots of interesting people and see various parts of the city you probably would never ever go to.
Unfortunately one night I was involved in a hit-and-run accident where a lady smashed into my car while I had a passenger in downtown LA. I was going down a two lane one-way street in the left lane, at the intersection the lady driving a new white Mercedes E-class decided to make a left turn from the right lane and smashed right into my car since she was right next to me. The police thought she was drunk and that’s why she took off, who knows?
I did a get a picture of the car and driver before she took off, but no license plates. In California you can buy a car without license plates and drive, which is crazy. A lot of people never ever put on their real license plates so they can get away with things like accidents, red lights, tolls, etc. If you know who this person is, let me know!
After the accident I let the Uber passenger out at the side of the street where he called another Uber to get to his destination. I made sure to file a police report to get a record of the accident. LAPD never showed up to do the report so I ended up filing it at the police station.
The Uber passenger reported the accident so Uber reached out to me via e-mail before I reported the accident to them. James River Insurance holds the commercial policy for Uber and the process was fairly straightforward.
There’s an app from James River you use to take photos of your vehicle and they do a virtual estimate based on those photos. Soon thereafter they give you an initial estimate, which of course is low.
I needed to provided my current insurance documents to them to show my insurance coverage. From what I read, Uber’s insurance through James River will mirror your coverage. Once they verified I had coverage they continue to process and claim and you can bring the car to your body shop. Keep in mind there is a flat $1,000 deductible on Uber’s insurance.
The repair shop continued to estimate the repairs and worked to get a supplement through James River as the original estimate didn’t cover the full cost. It ended up being about $1,500 USD more than the original estimate.
My claims manager with James River I would say was sub-par. She only answered her phone once out of calling maybe 10-15 times over a few weeks. E-mails would be responded to but they were never quick replies. The payments from James River was slow, and the supplement never got out to the shop sent until after I had to chase James River down multiple times.
Overall, I’d say it was easy and straightforward, but expect James River to work slowly. Maybe my claims agent was inefficient, or that’s how the company works overall. But if you do get into an accident with Uber and need to file a claim, rest assured it should get covered as long as your personal policy would cover it. You don’t need to report it to your own policy by the way.