Uber & Lyte Auto Accidents In Connecticut

Many people are using rideshare services, such as Uber & Lyte. Unlike with a taxi company, a driver for Uber & Lyte is an independent contractor, rather than an employee. The difference becomes very important in the event that a person is hurt as a result of the negligence of a driver.

Taxi companies employ drivers who work for the company. The taxi company has its own liability insurance company to cover the vehicle driven by an employee. If a driver is involved in an auto accident with a company vehicle, even if he has no passenger, typically, the taxi company insurance policy covers the claim.

An accident with an Uber or Lyte vehicle may be different. Uber and Lyte have a 1,000,000 policy, which will cover passengers in a vehicle. However, the coverage is different than a taxcab commercial insuance policy. If you are involved in an accident with an Uber or Lyte vehicle which is not transporting passengers (or going to pick up passengers), there may be an issue as to whether the 1M policy will cover your claim.

I recently renewed my auto insurance. The insurance company asked if I use my vehicle for any ride sharing service, such as Uber or Lyte. Ride sharing drivers need commercial insurance to cover claims. If you are involved in an accident with an off-duty rideshare driver, the other driver’s insurance company may deny the claim if he or she does not have commercial insurance.

If you were involved in an acciident with an Uber or Lyt motor vehicle, please feel free to contact

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue, Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

Serving New Haven Count and all of Connecticut

rsingerct@yahoo.com

Motor Vehicle Insurance – Payment for Vehicle Loss

A person can be in an accident in which a vehicle is “totaled.” When a vehicle is totaled, an insurance company will pay to replace the vehicle. This often happens when the cost to repair the vehicle is greater than the value of the vehicle. For example, it is not economical for an insurance company to pay $10,000 to repair a car which is worth only $7,000.

In these situations, you need to determine how the insurance company will determine “value.” If your insurance company will be paying the amount due, check if your policy provides for payment based on “actual cash value” or “replacement cost.”

  1. With replacement cost, you determine how much it would cost to replace the same vehicle at the time of loss. Often, you can look at a guidebook, such as the book from NADA (nadaguides.com).
  2. The “actual cash value” is a different calculation (ACV). ACV considers the depreciation on a vehicle. The normal calculation is –
  • original cash value less depreciation

the depreciation number should be based on the useful life of the vehicle and the number of years in service, i.e. 60% depreciation if car is 3 years old with a 5-year useful life.

there can be an additional deduction for items such as high mileage

In certain cases, you can obtain full replacement cost coverage. Also, if you are buying a car on credit, you may be required to obtain “gap insurance.” which covers the difference between normal insurance coverage and the amount of a loan. Gap insurance between important when a loan is upside loan (the loan amount is greater than the value of the motor vehicle).

If you have any questions in Connecticut concerning insurance coverage issues, please feel free to contact

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue, Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

Serving all of Connecticut

Collateral Source Reduction Rule with Medpay in Connecticut

In Connecticut, a person may purchase an automobile insurance policy with a medical payments provision (Medpay). Medpay provides payments for medical care up to a specified amount, provided in an insurance policy.

As an example – a claimant/insured is involved in an auto accident. His motor vehicle insurance company pays $5,000 for medical payments. The insured pays a total of $2,200 for auto insurance coverage with $200 of the premium for the Medpay coverage.

A jury awards the following as damages

$5,000 for economic damages (all economic damages are covered and paid for by Medpay).

$15,000 for non-economic damages

Total verdict of $20,000

In this situation: the award will be reduced by the $5,000 in economic damages, the amount of the Medpay, less than $200 paid for the Medpay coverage.

The final judgment becomes $15,200. $15,000 non-economic damages plus $5,000 economic damages less $5,000 collateral source reduction plus $200 cost of Medpay coverage

See Jones v Riley, 263 Conn 93 (2003).

If you have an auto insurance claim in Connecticut, please feel free to contact

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue, Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

rsingerct@yahoo.com

SERVING ALL OF CONNECTICUT

Time Limitations to Suit – Insurance Policy

It is common for an insurance policy to set a time limit in which to file suit, concerning a claim.

For example, you have an insurance policy with Giant Insurance Company. The insurance policy covers claims concerning homeowner’s insurance. The insurance policy provides that a suit concerning a claim against Giant must be commenced within 2 years from the date of the incident which caused the claim, such as a fire or theft.

Connecticut State law provides a statute of limitations period of six years, for contract claims. The legal issue is whether the insurance policy applies – the limitations period of 2 years in the insurance policy overrides the state statute of limitations.

Although I could not find a specific Connecticut Appeals Court case, the general rule is that parties are free to decide, by contract, the time frame in which to bring suit. (In Connecticut, there is specific law which applies to underinsured motorist claims which require a minimum amount of time to file suit, which can override an insurance policy provision).

This is a potential trap for claimants. A claimant who is having a problem with his or her own insurance company must review his or her insurance policy. It is vital to start suit within any time limit set by an insurance policy.

If you are having problems with an insurance claim, please feel free to contact

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue

Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

rsingerct@yahoo.com

Serving all of Connecticut

Airbnb Scams

Often, Airbnb hosts provide a good place to stay at a reasonable price. Unfortunately, there are some hosts who are very deceptive and fail to provide the place which is promised. Because of the number of places available, Airbnb has not done a good job screening hosts.

Recently, I had two very good experiences and one very bad experience.

The first two hosts were super. The hosts were very nice, and helpful. The places were as promised.

The third host was not honest about the place. The listing was for a “private room.” I had booked for three people. First of all the picture was of the living room, not the bedroom. Second, the room was part of an apartment rented by the host. Third, the larger bedroom was very small and could not fit three people. Fourth, there was another small bedroom available, but we were not told before we arrived if we could use this bedroom. Fifth, there were no interior locks on the bedroom door. (After I listed the problems on the Airbnb website, the host claimed that we “never checked in.” In fact, we called her and she never called back. )

I have a friend who booked a condominium in the Bahamas. When he arrived with his family at the condominium, the conditions were terrible, so he had to stay a hotel for the weak, at an added costs.

The idea of Airbnb is good. However, guests need to be careful when booking accommodations. There are many hosts who are willing to take advantage of guests, to make a fast dollar.

Therefore, prior to booking, always check the reviews. More reviews are better. I made a mistake by booking with the third host, without carefully checking the reviews. Next time, I will be very reluctant to book at any place with a bad written review.

Robert M. Singer, Attorney at Law

2572 Whitney Avenue, Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

rsingerct@yahoo.com

Lead Paint Injury Lawyer

Lead paint can be a major health risk particularly for children. Lead paint was banned nationwide, for residential use, in 1978. Unfortunately, there are many houses which were built prior to 1978, which still contain lead paint.

One particular risk with lead based paint relates to chipping. Another risk is of dust from lead based paint. Anyone living in a older residence should have the paint tested for lead.

The law requires a landlord of a pre-1978 property to inform a tenant of known lead-based paint hazards. However, a landlord may not adequately test a potential rental unit for lead-based paint.

Prior to 1950, many residential units had been painted with paint having a high concentration of lead. Therefore, these units pose a particularly high risk of lead poisoning to tenants.

If you suspect that your housing unit has lead paint, it is very important to have the paint professionally tested. Lead paint removal can be very expensive, as special equipment is needed by construction workers during the removal process.

Lead poisoning can cause a variety of medical conditions including

*change in behavior

*headaches

*irritability

*low IQ

*constipation

It is important to avoid exposure to lead based paints, including chips and dust. If you or someone you know has been exposed to lead, go to get medical care as soon as possible.

If you have any questions, or would like assistance, please feel free to contact

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue

Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

rsingerct@yahoo.com

Foreclosure Mediation Extended in Connecticut

Connecticut recently amended the law with regard to the foreclosure mediation program. Under the changes to Connecticut General Statutes 49-31l(a), the foreclosure mediation program will apply to any action for the foreclosure of a mortgage with a return date from July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2023.

In effect, the law extended the foreclosure mediation program for another 4 years. (Connecticut General Assembly Raised Bill 6996).

If you have question about the foreclosure mediation program, please feel free to contact;

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue

Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

rsingerct@yahoo.com

All Terrain Vehicle Claims in Connecticut

An All Terrain Vehicle is a motorized vehicle with 4 (or sometimes more) wheels that is manufactured to go on different types of terrain. An ATV is manufactured to travel over rough surfaces.

The engine size of the ATV can vary greatly from 49 cc to 1000 cc. Therefore, an All Terrain Vehicle can be a powerful as a larger motorcycle.

Interestingly, there is a federal ban in the U.S. on the sale of three-wheel ATVs, because of safety concerns. In 1987, The Consumer Product Safety Commission voted to confirm an agreement, made by the Justice Department with manufacturers, which banned the sale of three-wheel all-terrain vehicles.

At the time of the ban in 1987, there were approximately 2.5 million ATVs in use. Half of the ATVs had three wheels. According to a Washington Post article in 1987, there were about 880 deaths and 300,000 injuries from 1982 to 1989, related to ATVs.

Updated Statistics on ATV ownership, for 2018, shows the following

  1. For age group 18 – 29 : 8.11% own an all-terrain vehicle
  2. For age group 30-49: 11.85% own an all-terrain vehicle
  3. For age group 50-69: 5.5% own an all-terrain vehicle

The Consumer Product Safety Commission stated in 2005 there were approximately 137,000 emergency room visits due to injuries associated with ATV usage. (This statistic would not, by definition, include injuries which were not treated in an emergency hospital setting. )

The American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended that no person under 16 be allowed to drive an all-terrain vehicle.

Using an All-Terrain Vehicle is high risk. The ATV can be as powerful as a motorcycle, with a large engine. In addition, off road conditions can add unknown risks to driving an All-Terrain Vehicle. Anyone thinking about using an ATV should wear all of the safety gear of a motorcycle rider, including a helmet and appropriate clothing.

If you have been involved in an accident from an off-road vehicle, please feel free to contact:

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue

Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

rsingerct@yahoo.com

Airbag Failure Attorney in Connecticut

The situation happens as follows:

A person is driving his or her car down the road. The roads are slippery. The car slides off the road, and hits a tree, nearly head-on. The person is seriously injured. The airbag fails to activate.

Unfortunately, this is not an uncommon situation. Due to manufacturer’s defects, an airbag system may fail.

There are several reasons for an airbag not activating:

1.A sensor fails to detect the accident. For example, on a side impact accident, there may be no sensor at the point of impact.

2. A sensor is faulty. In the above example, if a sensor is in place at the point of impact, the sensor should detect the impact to activate the airbag. A faulty sensor will not detect the impact of an accident.

3. A poorly designed airbag system. For example, the manufacturer has failed to place enough sensors, to detect a crash. The vehicle may strike a spot which does not have a sensor in place. Also, there may be a defective clock spring which maintains the consistency between the airbag and the electrical wiring by continually interweaving in and out against the steering wheel.

4. Electrical failure. The airbag system doesn’t properly light up, sending an electrical signal though the system to activate the airbag(s). Almost everyone has seen a situation where there is a short circuit, in an electrical line. In an airbag system, there can be a short, or similar failure.

5. Faulty airbag module. This is often called the control module or computer module. During a collision, the airbag control module receives information from an impact sensor, which then relays a signal to deploy the airbags. If there is no relay of the signal., the air bag system fails.

If you have been in an accident in which an airbag failed to activate, you may have a claim against the motor vehicle manufacturer. Please feel free to contact.

Attorney Robert M. Singer

2572 Whitney Avenue

Hamden, CT 06518

203-248-8278

rsingerct@yahoo.com