A San Francisco-based law firm has plans to file over 1000 sexual assault lawsuits and harassment cases against Uber and Lyft. They have already filed 85 civil complaints against Uber with the San Francisco Country Superior. Around 321 cases against Uber and 517 cases against Lyft are pending and under investigation.
The alleged incidents have occurred all across the country, some cases dating back to 2017. Since there are a lot of cases but only one defendant, they have requested the San Francisco court to combine all the civil lawsuits against Uber in one proceeding. It is called a Judicial Council Co-ordinated Proceeding.
The law firm stated that the cases were not class-action lawsuits but individual cases because the particulars and severity of each case were different. In most of the cases, the drivers had taken advantage of vulnerable women when they were intoxicated or asleep or when their phone battery died.
Attorney Meghan McCormick recalled recording victims’ statements that described incidents of groping, drivers locking the doors and making inappropriate comments, driving the unconscious victims to the drivers’ homes, or manipulating the app to avoid detection of location.
Several lawsuits have been settled out of court by the company whereas many are going to go on trial over the next few months. The law firm is asking the ride share companies to have mandatory surveillance cameras in their vehicles. They believe that 99% of the crimes could be prevented if there were cameras in the car.
In response to the lawsuits Uber released a statement stating “ Uber Sexual assault is a devastating crime and although no industry is immune from these issues, we remain steadfast in our commitment to support victims and help stop sexual violence by collaborating with experts, pioneering safety tech solutions, and setting the standard on transparency and accountability.”
They stated that for most of the lawsuits filed, the plaintiff’s counsel had not been able to provide them with information that can help identify the sexual assault or harassment connection to the Uber platform.
For the claims for which they had been provided sufficient information, Uber confirmed that:
- The drivers had been banned from the Uber platform.
- The said drivers had cleared motor vehicle and criminal background checks. They fulfilled the regulatory requirements to drive with Uber.
- Drivers are permitted to install a dash camera in the vehicle in accordance with the local state laws.
California Uber Sexual Assault / Lyft Sexual Assault Lawsuits
In sexual assault and harassment cases related to ride-sharing companies drivers, if a driver is found guilty then the ride-sharing company can also be held liable for the assault depending on the situation and type of incident. A professional lawyer can help in investigating the sexual assault and help determine the liable parties.
The lawyer can help decide whether the lawsuit should be filed against the driver or ride-sharing company or both parties.
Though the driver may be the perpetrator, if the lawyer gets access to his records with the company and if his history shows sexual assault in the past, then the company can also be held liable for the assault as they were negligent while hiring the driver.
The ride-sharing company also has all the data and records about the pickup and drop and the route taken, this information can help in proving the assault or any offense.
If you have been a victim of Uber Sexual Assault or Lyft Sexual Assault, get in touch with our team of experienced lawyers at Khashan Law on 951.461.2387. Our entire legal team will ensure that your case is well represented and you receive full compensation for the injuries and damages suffered.