Precedent-Setting Sophia Liu Uber Wrongful Death Injury Lawsuit
On New Year’s Eve 2013, six-year-old Sophia Liu, her brother, and mother were hit by Syed Muzzafar, an Uber driver taking a right hand turn while they were crossing a street, walking in a crosswalk with a green light. Police said the crash was caused by Muzzafar failing to yield to the girl, her mother and brother as they crossed Polk Street in a crosswalk near the San Francisco Civic Center. Sophia Liu was taken to San Francisco General Hospital where she died. Her mother, who suffered life-threatening injuries, and bother fortunately survived.
At the time of the collision, Muzzafar was logged onto his Uber app and was awaiting to receive and accept a ride request. Uber denied any legal responsibility. It refused to provide compensation to the Liu family because Muzzafar was not transporting a passenger. Uber’s assertion that it bore no legal responsibility, if successful, would have been devastating for the Liu family. Muzzafar had only the minimum insurance on his personal policy to compensate the Liu family. The bill for medical services alone for the family exceeded $500,000.
Represented by Chris Dolan, the family filed on January 24, 2014, the first ever wrongful death lawsuit against Uber based on the negligence of an Uber driver. The lawsuit received worldwide press coverage. “Uber’s claims that they are not responsible for injuries caused by Uber drivers who are logged on to the system but not carrying a fare flies in the face of hundreds of years of law,” Chris told the New York Times. “New technology does not eliminate well-established legal principles.”
In the filing the Uber lawsuit, Chris stated, “Uber shares in the profits of its drivers and it must also share in the responsibility for the harms they cause. As transportation delivery systems evolve so will the law. The technology may change but the basic rights of the public to safety and accountability will be upheld through the civil justice system.”
One year later later, the parties announced a settlement of the lawsuit. “The Liu family has reached a settlement with Uber in the lawsuit stemming from the death of Sofia Liu,” Chris stated. “The settlement is confidential and the family will only say that while nothing will ever bring Sofia back, they are grateful to the American Judicial System for providing them a way to resolve the legal issues raised by Sofia’s death.”
As a result of the lawsuit, Uber changed its policies to expand insurance coverage for collisions and crashes caused by Uber drivers even if there is no passenger in the car when the accident occurs as long as the driver is logged into Uber’s app and available to accept a ride. In addition, Chris and the Liu family, with support from the Consumer Attorneys of California, successfully lobbied the Legislature for the adoption of a law requiring Uber and other ride share companies to have $1 million in liability insurance coverage for their drivers.
Contact Dolan Law Firm: Nation’s Leading Uber Lawsuit Attorneys
The Dolan Law Firm is the premier law firm in California and the nation for representing individuals involved in Uber car accidents, Uber traffic collisions, and Uber crashes resulting in serious injuries and deaths.
We are known for taking challenging and complicated cases to trial and prevailing. As a result, we often obtain recoveries far above industry averages, including some of the largest verdicts and settlements ever in individual injury lawsuits in California.
We provide our clients outstanding legal services backed by substantial financial and technological resources that no individual attorney or small law firm can provide. We work with the leading accident reconstruction and biomechanics experts to demonstrate the full extent of your injuries.
If you were injured in a crash while a passenger in an Uber car, or another motorist, pedestrian, bicyclist, or motorcyclist injured by an Uber driver, or are an Uber driver injured due to the fault of another driver, we will help you obtain the full compensation you are entitled to under the law. Please call us today at 415-636-8160 or complete our online contact form.
We will review your claim and advise you of your legal rights for free, promptly and with no obligation on your part.