Do you read the “Terms and Conditions” that are referenced every time you download an app, enter a website, use a credit card or do almost anything in our modern, high-tech world? It’s all part of the small print that almost everyone ignores. Large corporations write them, often in an attempt to avoid responsibility for accidents, losses, injuries, and other calamities.
Terms and Conditions usually include “disclaimers” and some of those have no basis in law.
Ride-share companies like Uber and Lyft have become a part of our everyday world. For example, Uber has become a global service providing roughly 15 million rides per day across 500 cities, so obviously there will be accidents, sometimes serious ones, involving Uber cars.
In March of 2018 a woman in Philadelphia was badly injured in a car accident that involved an Uber car. She sued Uber and the Uber driver and asked for her case to be heard by a jury, a right guaranteed by the 7th Amendment, which states:
In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
However, Uber’s “small print” included this: You acknowledge and agree that you and Uber are each waiving the right to a trial by jury or to participate as a plaintiff or class member in any purported class action or representative proceeding.
Fortunately a judge found that Uber could not prove the victim actually read and understood their terms and conditions and therefore she should not be required to waive her right to a jury trial.
The lesson to be learned here is that everyone should be careful about what agreements they agree to. But it’s also important to understand that just because you click an “I Agree” button it does not mean you give up your rights. If you are injured or suffer damages because of someone else’s carelessness, negligence, or malpractice it’s always best to get advice from an experienced attorney.
The Law Offices of Lazarus and Lazarus are highly experienced dealing with cases involving injuries from automobile, truck, and motorcycle accidents. If you have questions, we are here to help. Please call us 7 days a week at (954) 356-0006.