Electric scooter accident – when can you claim damages? (legal information)
How do you claim damages after an accident with an electric scooter? A scooter is not defined as a motor vehicle, and a scooter rider who was injured by a vehicle claims damages as a pedestrian. A person injured in a collision with a scooter can claim recognition of a personal accident with the National Insurance.
Unfortunately, electric scooter accidents have become increasingly common. Electric scooters have become a very popular means of transportation, especially in large cities. It is a good alternative to other vehicles, including public transportation. The popularity of electric scooters has increased also due to the emergence of short-term rental companies, which offer scooters for travel in the centers of major cities. However, there are real dangers facing users of electric scooters. Accidents that occur while using an electric scooter can result in serious injuries and even death. It is important to be well acquainted with the legal rights of electric scooter victims, and the legal complexity on the subject. We explain this below.
The lawyers from our firm, with offices in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, specialize in tort law and insurance law. The lawyers from our office have extensive experience in providing consulting services and legal representation in a variety of issues, including compensation for victims of road accidents, physical injuries, and more. Our firm accompanies its clients and provides them with a comprehensive and optimal response throughout all stages of the tort procedure, in a manner adapted to their needs and the requirements of each procedure individually.
Why can damage claims for an electric scooter accident be legally complex?
There is a legal difficulty in claiming damages after accidents involving electric scooters. The difficulty stems from the fact that the electric scooter, despite being motorized, is not recognized as a motor vehicle according to the Road Accident Victims Compensation Law. Accordingly, it is not possible to claim compensation for electric scooter accidents under said law. However, this does not mean that it is not possible to claim damages caused for said accidents by a different means. Below we will detail the ways to claim damages, and we will present examples of cases in which significant compensation was awarded to the victims of an electric scooter accident.
Electric scooter accident involving a vehicle (car or motorcycle)
As a general rule, in cases where electric scooter riders are hit by a moving vehicle, they will be entitled to damages for the accident, like pedestrians. The rule in this matter is one of “absolute liability”. This means that it will not be necessary to prove the liability of the driver of the offending vehicle for the injury suffered by the scooter rider.
It is, however, important to thoroughly document the injury and the driver’s details, as well as to ensure immediate medical treatment. It is important to ensure that the injury is duly recorded in the medical documentation of the treatment. The damages in these cases can be awarded for various damages other than the physical, and may also include mental damages.
An electric scooter accident that did not involve another vehicle
Where the scooter rider is injured in an accident that did not involve a vehicle, there may be several bodies that can be sued, depending on the circumstances of the case. The scooter rider will be able to file a claim for recognition of a personal accident from the National Insurance Institute. In some cases, it will be possible to claim damages from the municipality for a hazard that caused the accident. Sometimes it will even be possible to claim damages from the rental companies. For example, when it comes to an electric scooter with some kind of malfunction that caused an accident, it may be possible to sue the importer or marketer of the scooter. In 2014, a judgment was issued by the Nazareth Magistrate Court in which compensation was awarded in the amount of half a million ILS to the victim of an electric scooter accident. The company who marketed the vehicle without approval was found liable for the damage.
Other cases involve accidents that happen when a scooter is used as a means of getting to work. An accident while riding a scooter on the way to or from work may be considered a work accident. When it comes to teenagers who were injured while using a scooter, they may be entitled to compensation under personal accident insurance. The variety of cases we detailed above illustrate how much each case depends on its own circumstances. That is why we recommend consulting a lawyer specializing in tort law to understand the possibilities of a specific case.
Electric scooter accident – contact a lawyer who specializes in tort and traffic accidents
If you have specific questions about an electric scooter accident, our lawyers are available for you. The lawyers from our office have a lot of experience in providing comprehensive legal support to victims of car accidents and other accidents as part of their claim for compensation and the rights they are entitled to. Please contact us using the phone numbers or e-mail address listed below, in order to schedule a consultation with a lawyer in our office in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem.