The following was a letter we sent to our local City Councillor ahead of a decision regarding ridesharing services. We encourage you to provide your City Councillor with your own thoughts on this matter.
Dear City Councillor,
I write to you today to provide input on your upcoming decision regarding ridesharing services like Uber. I write to you more specifically as a personal injury lawyer who has fielded far too many calls from people with too little or no insurance.
Most people’s vehicles are covered under personal insurance policies. When these people use their vehicles for commercial purposes such as ridesharing services, they are very likely violating the essential terms of their insurance policies. This means there is a very good chance they are not insured at all. This puts ridesharing drivers, all other drivers on the roads and pedestrians at an unacceptable level of risk that can easily be avoided by requiring proof of adequate insurance to be kept on file.
The Financial Services Commission of Ontario, our Provincial insurance regulatory body, has approved ridesharing insurance policies recently. That does not mean everyone who drives for a ridesharing company has voluntarily purchased this more expensive insurance.
Do what you feel fairly balances the interests of taxi drivers who have paid for permits and have much stricter controls and ride sharing drivers who provide consumers with choice and remove barriers to transportation employment; I am not providing an opinion on that. Whatever you choose, I ask that you ensure that commercial drivers on our streets are carrying adequate insurance so innocent people and families do not have to suffer catastrophic consequences including financial ruin and lack of rehabilitation services if and when an accident happens.
Yours very truly,
Beament Hebert Nicholson LLP