Legislators in the Tennessee House and Senate are considering a ridesharing bill that would legalize Uber and Lyft operations throughout the state.
If successful, the new state law would trump municipal laws that have attempted to regulate the two technology companies.
Uber and Lyft are based in California and both offer a ridesharing app that drivers and passengers can download to find one another. The new ride-hailing services connect passengers to private drivers in their vicinity.
The companies have been mired in legal disputes ever since they emerged on the market. Different states, cities and municipalities have all taken a different approach to regulating the companies. In Tennessee, the companies have been operating since 2013.
Both companies report that they have decreased DUI arrests, created new jobs, and have enhanced the options for urban commuters throughout Tennessee.
In some markets, such as Kansas City, the companies have departed after finding regulations too arduous. Both Uber and Lyft claim that they have sufficient background checks and insurance policies in place to protect members of the public.
Legislators, on the other hand, along with many taxi companies, have been more concerned about whether the companies are properly registered, if extensive background checks have been completed, and whether sufficient insurance coverage is in place.
The current bill being considered has the support of insurance agents throughout the state. In many ways, the bill uses a hands-off approach.
While the bill sets minimum requirements, the compliance of Uber and Lyft with said requirements is largely left up to them. The bill, which has passed in the House Insurance and Commerce committee as well as the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee, is set to be considered by both houses in full.
How We Can Help
At Greg Coleman Law, our auto accident lawyers in Knoxville, TN remain abreast of emerging transportation issues to make sure we are ready to assist car accident victims. With the proliferation of ride-sharing services in our state, there will likely be new forms of liability that will emerge.
Anyone who is injured in an accident involving an Uber or Lyft driver will need a law firm with cutting-edge technology and legal skills.