SeanCarlo Lopez | October 10, 2023 | Uber & Lyft Accidents
Vehicle and Driver Requirements For Uber and Lyft
Uber and Lyft are the two big names in the rideshare industry — an industry that has transformed how people everywhere get from place to place. These companies benefit commuters who do not have reliable transportation or do not wish to drive themselves. They also benefit the drivers who work with Uber and Lyft by providing a ready source of income.
Both Uber and Lyft characterize their drivers as independent contractors. As independent contractors, drivers are afforded some measure of independence in how they do their jobs. Most significantly, drivers can choose to work any schedule they wish without prior approval from the rideshare company.
This does not mean that anyone can work for Uber or Lyft or that a rideshare driver can drive any vehicle they want. Both companies have set forth requirements for their drivers and the vehicles they will allow them to operate.
Requirements For Vehicles
There are a wide variety of vehicles on the roads, but both Uber and Lyft restrict the types of vehicles they will allow their drivers to transport riders in.
Lyft requires a four-door vehicle with at least five working seat belts. Older vehicles are generally not allowed, although the maximum age of the vehicle can vary depending on the driver’s location. Finally, while subcompact vehicles are allowed, taxis and limos are not.
Uber’s requirements are similar and will vary depending on location. Generally, to drive with Uber, you must have a vehicle with four doors and five seats. If you are driving for UberXL, your vehicle must have at least seven seats. Your car must also be a newer model, generally no older than 15 or 16 years.
Both companies require that your vehicle be insured, registered, and in good repair. Periodic inspections of your vehicle must also be completed.
Requirements For Uber and Lyft Drivers
Uber and Lyft have similar requirements for prospective drivers. At a minimum, drivers must be fully licensed and insured. Uber specifically requires that your driver’s license be issued by the state where you will drive.
The companies have different minimum ages and experience levels that drivers must meet. For example, Uber will allow you to drive with one year of driving experience if you are 25 years of age or older. If you are younger than 25, you must have three years of successful driving experience.
Conversely, Lyft accepts drivers as young as 21, provided they meet all other requirements.
Both companies will also run a criminal background check and a driving history check. Uber and Lyft will look at the previous seven years in determining whether to allow you to drive with them.
Some of the convictions or incidents that may disqualify you from driving include:
- Violent offenses or sexual offenses
- Certain drug or property crimes
- Hit-and-run accidents where you fled the scene
- Driving under the influence convictions
- Numerous traffic infractions within a recent period
Uber and Lyft continue to monitor current drivers’ criminal and driving records, and drivers for either service are required to update the company with new information concerning accidents or criminal convictions.
The Purpose of Uber’s and Lyft’s Requirements
While these rideshare giants may seem overly particular about who they want to drive for them, these standards are enforced for a reason. Vehicle and driver requirements help ensure that passengers have safe and enjoyable rideshare experiences. Before jumping into a stranger’s car, riders can rest assured that someone has investigated and approved the driver as dependable and their vehicle as safe. This helps prevent accidents involving Uber and Lyft.
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