Who's Liable in an E-Scooter Accident? | Staver Personal Injury Lawyers
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Who’s Liable in an E-Scooter Accident?

Written by Jared Staver

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Jared Staver is a Personal Injury Lawyer based in Chicago, Illinois and has been practicing law for over 20 years.

Jared Staver

CATEGORY: Pedestrian Accidents, Personal Injury

After the public showed initial interest in electric scooters or “e-scooters” during a pilot program, the city of Chicago has jumped into offering this environmentally friendly method of transportation. While they are a fun alternative to cars, buses, and other vehicles, they also present unique safety issues for automobile drivers and scooter riders.

A common issue is determining who is liable for an e-scooter accident. Riders rarely have insurance to cover accidents, but should other drivers always be held responsible? These considerations can be quite complex and impact your ability to recover compensation.

E-Scooter Safety Risks

There are many safety risks when riding e-scooters. You should always wear safety gear, such as a helmet, knee pads, and elbow protection. Some of the common safety risks while riding include:

  • Ground obstacles such as curbs and manhole covers
  • Mechanical problems such as failing brakes
  • Holes in tires and broken wheels
  • Distracted riders and other motor vehicle drivers
  • Unsafe riding weather
  • Inability of the scooter to handle hills and curves
  • Wet roads and puddles
  • Exceeding the scooter weight limit

Some of these safety risks can be avoided or prevented with precautions by e-scooter riders and other drivers.

Common Causes of E-Scooter Accidents

While e-scooter riders may cause an accident, there may also be other outside causes of these crashes. If you are involved in an accident with a motor vehicle driver, pedestrian, bicyclist, or another individual, it’s crucial to figure out what happened. Common causes of e-scooter accidents include:

  • E-scooter riders disregarding traffic laws
  • Failure of the other individual to follow the rules of the road
  • Using electronic devices while riding
  • Distracted driving
  • Intoxicated riding or DUI/DWI
  • Roadway or sidewalk hazards
  • E-scooter malfunction

More than one cause may contribute to your accident. In that case, you must work with an attorney to determine who should be held liable for damages.

Liability in E-Scooter Accidents

An e-scooter accident victim may be the rider, a pedestrian, a bicyclist, another motorist, or someone whose property was damaged in the crash. These individuals may suffer injuries or other material damages in a scooter accident.

The person who is at fault for the accident should be held liable. Liability means that they pay for the damages sustained by the other parties. One or more people may be held responsible, including the at-fault driver of the e-scooter, another vehicle, or the scooter manufacturer.

At-Fault Driver Liability

If one of the drivers involved in the accident is at fault, then their insurance company may have to pay for the damages they cause. Drivers of motorcycles, cars, or trucks might be responsible if they were driving while intoxicated, speeding, distracted, or otherwise failed to follow the law. In many cases, the driver of another motor vehicle often fails to yield right of way or fails to look out for a scooter rider. The driver would be liable for injuries and other damages.

If the e-scooter driver is at fault and doesn’t have insurance covering the accident, they may be personally liable. They can be sued in a personal injury lawsuit to pay for the damages they caused.

Scooter Manufacturer Liability

If the e-scooter malfunctioned because it was defective, then the scooter manufacturer may be held liable. Scooters may be defective because they do not have proper warnings, have design faults, or were manufactured improperly. These causes of action fall under the legal theory of product liability.

Product liability imputes strict liability upon the scooter manufacturer or seller, so they are responsible for damages, regardless of other additional causes. The defective product they made or sold is considered the ultimate problem, and they are held liable for damages it causes.

What to Do if You’re Hurt in an E-Scooter Accident

If you are injured in an e-scooter accident, take the following steps to ensure you can collect compensation in the future:

  1. Call 911 and report your accident.
  2. Go to the hospital to get medical treatment immediately.
  3. Take pictures and video at the scene of the accident.
  4. Get the other parties’ names, contact information, and insurance information.
  5. Get names and contact information for any witnesses.
  6. Document your injuries and how they affect your life in a post-accident pain journal.
  7. Continue getting medical treatment as recommended by your doctors.
  8. Keep track of all medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.
  9. Call an e-scooter accident lawyer who can represent your rights.
  10. Decide if a settlement or personal injury lawsuit is right for you.

Contact an E-Scooter Accident Lawyer for Help After a Crash

An e-scooter accident can be challenging to navigate. The other vehicle’s driver may try to claim you were at fault. Their insurance company may even deny your claim. Working with an attorney who can protect your right to receive the compensation you deserve is essential.

Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. has worked with countless clients who were victims of serious accidents. We can conduct an independent investigation to determine who was liable and how to get the most compensation possible. Call us today at (312) 236-2900 or use our online contact form to reach out.

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(312) 236-2900
(312) 236-2900
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