Injured Delivery Bicyclists Face Challenges Seeking Compensation

New York City’s delivery workers face dangers on its streets on a daily basis. A vast majority of these workers live from paycheck to paycheck. Many are immigrants who depend on their food delivery job to help their families stateside or back in their home country. A recent article in THE CITY highlights the challenges that injured delivery workers face when they are left with medical expenses while dealing with lost income after a bicycle accident on the job.

The article gives the example of one worker — Jose Valentin Diaz — who was on his e-bike on the 31st Street bike lane in Queens in May 2021 with a DoorDash order in tow. He was struck by a car whose driver fled the scene. Diaz, 47, briefly lost consciousness from the crash and was rushed by paramedics to the hospital.

He told THE CITY that no one from DoorDash called to check on him or offer to help even though he informed them the following day why he wasn’t able to deliver the food the day before. The company’s representatives also did not inform him that he was entitled to claim compensation through DoorDash’s occupational accident policy. Diaz only learned about the policy through fellow delivery workers months later.

Challenges Faced by Delivery Workers

Often delivery workers find that whatever help they are entitled to receive if injured in a car accident depends on the app they are using, the stage of the delivery process they are in and their mode of transportation. This is obviously frustrating for workers in this high-risk industry. Last year, 49% of workers surveyed by researchers at the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations along with the Workers Justice Project reported being in an accident or crash. Another 30% said they had been physically assaulted on the job.

App-based workers are often viewed as independent contractors and therefore not protected by the federal workplace safety standards afforded to most workers. As a result injured delivery workers, who are often breadwinners for their families, are in the difficult position of returning to work even if they haven’t fully recovered from their injuries.

The other challenge is that the major delivery companies have different definitions of coverage for workers in crisis situations. Grubhub and Relay, two major players in the food delivery industry, are among those that do not carry occupational or auto coverage, except in California where some insurance coverage is required under state law.

UberEats only offers auto liability coverage, which applies to workers delivering in their cars. Workers injured while delivering on a moped, e-bike or bicycle are excluded from the company’s auto liability insurance plan. DoorDash offers up to $250,000 in third-party liability insurance for workers who suffer injuries during an active delivery or during the window of time between picking up and delivering an order — regardless of the worker’s mode of transportation. Still, delivery workers like Diaz struggle through the process and often need the help of a New York City personal injury lawyer to get the compensation they rightfully deserve.

Rights of Bicycle Accident Victims

Whether you are riding a bicycle in New York for work, or to commute or just for recreation and exercise, you have a right to be safe. Motorists have a duty of care and responsibility to share the roadway with other vehicles, including bicycles. Bicyclists have the same rights as drivers of other vehicles.

Bicycle accidents have the potential to result in serious and disabling injuries. Some victims are so badly injured that their lives are turned upside down. In some cases, workers may not be able to work for an extended period of time because they are recovering from their injuries. Sometimes, such victims are unable to return to work or earn a livelihood because of their injuries. Such loss of income can prove financially devastating for workers and their families. If you are a delivery worker in New York City who has been injured by a reckless or negligent (careless) driver, you can seek compensation for your injuries, damages and losses.

Contacting an Experienced Lawyer

Injured victims of bicycle accidents can seek compensation from at-fault parties for damages including, but not limited to, medical expenses, lost wages and benefits, hospitalization, rehabilitation, permanent injuries, disabilities, past and future pain and suffering, etc. Families that have lost loved ones in bicycle and pedestrian accidents can seek compensation for damages such as lost future income, medical and funeral costs, pain and suffering, etc.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident, or if you have lost a loved one in an auto accident caused by a negligent (careless) driver, the experienced New York personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Kenneth A. Wilhelm can help you better understand your legal rights and options, and also fight hard to recover just compensation for you.

For over 50 years, our skilled attorneys have established a proven track record of helping injured victims. Our law firm recently recovered $5,600,000 for a bicyclist who was hit by a van, and $2,550,000 for another victim of a truck accident, and $3,000,000 for a pedestrian who was hit by a car, and $2,000,000 in a hit-and-run accident, and the full $1,000,000 insurance policy for a pedestrian who was hit by a truck, and $4,625,000 for a driver who was in a car and was hit by a van, and $2,500,000 for a man who fell through an improperly secured hole.

We also obtained $295,000 in compensation for the victim of a bicycle dooring accident (where a car door opens into the path of a bicyclist). Also, one of our clients obtained a verdict for $43,940,000 and another of our clients got a verdict for $23,500,000, both in medical malpractice cases.

Please contact us TOLL FREE 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-WORK-4-YOU (1-800-967-5496). WE CAN EVEN COME TO YOU. There is no attorneys’ fee unless we recover money for you. We can also help with personal injury, lead poisoning and medical malpractice cases in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, or Florida. If you have been seriously injured in any of the 50 U.S. states, please call us and we will try to help you with your case.

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1-800-RADIO-LAW, 1-888-WYPADEK, OR 1-800-LAS-LEYES

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