What Do I Do if a Rideshare Driver Sexually Assaults Me?
Sexual assault in Uber and Lyft rides has become a growing issue in recent years, and it’s often unreported. Without proper reporting, it’s difficult to correct this issue and understand its severity.
Those who have taken legal action against Uber, Lyft, and their attackers have helped spread awareness of rideshare sexual assault and obtained the compensation they need to recover from the incident. Here’s more on what to do after rideshare sexual assault and how to hold all at-fault parties accountable.
How Do I Recover Physically & Emotionally?
Sexual assault cases range on a wide spectrum, from inappropriate comments all the way to rape. Rape victims may develop sexually transmitted diseases or genital injuries that require medical treatment. Victims may experience additional injuries if their attacker attempted to strangle them, hit them, or tackle them during the course of the sexual assault.
Regardless of the severity of your injuries, you should seek medical attention immediately to receive a full evaluation. Not only will this help treat your injuries, but it also provides medical records that strengthen your claim for compensation and prove the extent of your damages.
The Emotional Impact of Sexual Assault
While physical injuries are common in sexual assault cases, they are just the tip of the iceberg. Many sexual assault victims are plagued with mental and emotional trauma that require extensive therapy to fully recover from.
You may suffer from nightmares, repeated thoughts of the event or ‘flashbacks’, irritability, depression, or other symptoms commonly associated with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. If you don’t seek out the emotional support you need, you run the risk of developing an eating disorder, abusing alcohol or drugs, or even attempting suicide.
If you’re struggling with mental and emotional trauma, here are some tips to help you:
- Talk to Someone You Trust. Family members, friends, or therapists are all great people to reach out to if you need someone to talk to. Vocalizing your experience with a trusted individual is a great way to process the traumatic event and help you move forward.
- Join a Support Group. Depending on your area, there may be several other victims of sexual assault that you can connect with and share your experience in a safe space.
- Surround Yourself with Loved Ones. Once you’ve shared your experience with a trusted friend or family member, continue to surround yourself with them to stave off feelings of loneliness, which could increase the risk for substance abuse, suicide, and other negative consequences that result from emotional trauma.
What Organizations Assist Sexually Assault Victims?
If you need additional support during this challenging time, consider reaching out to the following organizations:
- The National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-HOPE
- The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN)
- The National Center for Victims of Crime
Where Do I Report Sexual Assault?
There are two main ways to report sexual assault: Filing a report with the police and reporting the assault to Uber and Lyft. You can file a police report by calling 911 or visiting the local police station. They will guide you through the steps to ensure your attacker is held accountable for their actions.
You can also report the incident directly to Uber or Lyft through their apps. Before filing your report, write down any details you can remember from the trip to ensure it is as accurate as possible.
What Damages Can I Recover in a Sexual Assault Case?
You may be entitled to several damages, depending on the severity of your case, which include the following:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Emotional Trauma
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Note that these damages are both monetary and non-monetary. Your attorney will evaluate your case to determine the accurate amount of compensation to pursue. Keeping a journal that documents your recovery journey can help prove how the traumatic experience has impacted your life. Further, testimony from friends and family could reinforce the argument that the sexual assault has resulted in your negative behavior.
Who’s at Fault for Rideshare Sexual Assault?
There could be several at fault parties in your rideshare sexual assault case. First and foremost, your attacker is the most liable party in your case. In addition to criminal penalties they may face, you could sue them in a civil case for their negligence. If you prove that they owed you a duty of care and caused your injuries because they breached this duty, you could recover compensation.
Additionally, the rideshare company might also be liable for your damages. There are several ways Uber or Lyft may have indirectly caused your sexual assault incident, including the following:
- Negligent Hiring – Uber and Lyft must perform background checks on all potential drivers. If they choose to hire a driver with a criminal record, they could be responsible for putting riders in danger.
- Negligent Retention – If Uber or Lyft failed to act after a driver was reported for sexual assault, they could be liable for your damages.
- Negligent Supervision – It’s Uber and Lyft’s responsibility to monitor all drivers closely to ensure that each rider gets to their destination safely without any issues.
Are There Ongoing Uber or Lyft Lawsuits?
There have already been several recent cases of sexual assault in Uber or Lyft rides. One case involves lawsuits from 550 women who claim they were sexually assaulted by their Uber driver. Lyft also faced a slew of lawsuits that included chilling details of victims being sexually assaulted and then threatened by their drivers to not report the incident.
Do I Have to Go to Court for a Rideshare Sexual Assault Case?
The majority of personal injury cases are settled outside of the courtroom. However, if you and the at-fault party cannot reach a fair settlement, your case may go to trial. At trial, your attorney will present the evidence you have against the at-fault party and argue for total compensation.
Will My Rideshare Case Remain Confidential?
It’s understandable that you would want your case to remain confidential for fear of retaliation by your attacker. You may be able to settle your case outside of court where most of the details will remain confidential. However, filing your case and going to trial might make the details of your case public. Your attorney might be able to seal certain personal information regarding your case to keep it off public record.
Sexually Assaulted by a Rideshare Driver? Call The Law Giant
Being sexually assaulted by a rideshare driver is a traumatic experience that could leave you questioning your next steps. With The Law Giant, you can stand tall against your attacker and negligent rideshare companies and fight back against the injustice you experienced.
Filing your case with a strong advocate at Law Giant Injury Lawyers not only allows you to fight for fair compensation, but it helps put an end to the sexual assault committed by rideshare drivers. Get justice today with the Law Giant by calling 505-900-0000 to schedule a free consultation.