The Current State of Uber Sexual Assault Claims

by | Dec 4, 2023 | Assault, Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment, Uber Harassment, Uber Sexual Assault

Hundreds of women have filed lawsuits against Uber alleging they were sexually assaulted by drivers. These lawsuits accuse Uber of negligence and a lack of adequate safety measures. Uber sexual assault claims are among the most tragic and disheartening claims currently pending in U.S. courts.

At Kherkher Garcia, our Uber sexual assault lawyers represent numerous victims pursuing justice against Uber. Our team is actively involved in the ongoing push for Uber to be held accountable for their negligence. We are delighted to provide some good news for victims and their families about the trajectory of current claims.

What is the Current Status of Uber Sexual Assault Claims?

In August, we told our readers about the, then upcoming, Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) to be held in September. Kherkher Garcia is one of the law firms that petitioned the JPML to consolidate Uber sexual assault and rape cases into multidistrict litigation (MDL). Consolidating into an MDL is an effective way to reduce court caseload burdens and promote efficiency. It is an effective means of addressing complex legal matters that apply to numerous cases without having to hear and rule on each case individually.

On October 4, 2023 we learned the results of the JPML, which effectively formed MDL 3084 – consolidating dozens of Uber sexual assault cases. Pretrial matters for these cases will now all be heard in the Northern District of California under Judge Charles Breyer. Judge Breyer will hear witness and expert depositions, discovery, and other pretrial matters as they arise.

Kherkher Garcia attorney Bret Stanley was quoted by NPR saying,

“This is a big deal because those documents are going to help show, we believe, that the sexual assault problem from drivers to riders is a massive problem.”

MDL is a Victory for Victims

In terms of Uber-related cases, this is a victory because Uber has attempted to stop consolidation numerous times. Uber’s terms of use state that class action lawsuits cannot be filed against them for sexual assault. This means that each case must be heard individually, leaving victims with few options to advocate for themselves. Uber’s argument in their motions to dismiss include statements such as, the company “…did not owe a duty to Plaintiff to protect against the criminal conduct.”

Legal representatives and victim’s advocates argue otherwise, and continue to fight for Uber to be held accountable. Attaining MDL status is just one more step toward justice for the victims of Uber sexual assaults.

Once pretrial matters are resolved in the MDL cases, the cases will then be set for trial in their respective states. Alternatively, the Judge may select the cases for a “bellwether trial,” in which case, Judge Breyer will act as a representative for all of the cases. It is expected that more lawsuits will be filed in the months ahead, with some estimates suggesting lawsuits could reach the thousands.

Uber Sexual Assault Claims by the Numbers

Reports of sexual assaults involving Uber drivers and passengers have brought attention to safety concerns within the platform, sparking debates about the company’s responsibility in preventing such incidents and adequately addressing them when they occur. As noted above, these reports have also resulted in hundreds of lawsuits being filed against the rideshare giant.

Here are some statistics about Uber sexual assault claims based on current information available and Uber’s Safety Report:

Reported Incidents:

  • 9,805: Total reports of sexual assault in Uber rides from 2017 to 2020
  • 3,824: Reports in 2019-2020 alone, including 141 rapes
  • 5,981: Reports in 2017-2018

Breakdown:

  • Rape: 852 reports from 2017-2020
  • Non-consensual kissing: 2,432 reports
  • Touching a sexual body part: 2,370 reports

Trends:

  • Decreased: Reports in 2019-2020 were 38% lower than 2017-2018, possibly due to the pandemic.
  • Riders as Accused: 43% of the time in 2019-2020, similar to 45% in 2017-2018.

Important Notes:

  • Reported numbers might not reflect actual occurrences.
  • Statistics can vary based on reporting period and definition of “sexual assault.”
  • These are just a few statistics, and the full picture is complex.

The frequency of these incidents raised alarm and prompted victims to come forward, sharing their traumatic experiences. Many cases involved passengers being assaulted or harassed by Uber drivers during rides. As you can see, reports are varied and include incidents ranging from inappropriate comments and advances to instances of physical assault and rape.

Uber has faced criticism for its handling of these cases, with concerns raised about the company’s response to reports of sexual assault. Critics argue that Uber failed to implement adequate safety measures to prevent such incidents and that the company’s response to complaints and reports are inadequate or insensitive.

Why Victims Should Contact an Uber Sexual Assault Lawyer

Uber sexual assault claims are complex, and as is evident, the process of justice for victims is continuing to advance and evolve. Victims of sexual assault involving Uber may find it helpful to contact an Uber sexual assault lawyer to guide them in protecting their rights and pursuing justice. Here are some ways that a lawyer can help:

Legal Guidance

A lawyer who is experienced in handling cases related to Uber sexual assault can provide victims with legal guidance and support. They can explain the victim’s rights, options, and potential legal pathways available to seek justice and compensation.

Understanding Legal Options

Uber sexual assault lawyers are well-versed in the legal complexities surrounding these cases. They can assess the situation, determine if grounds for legal action exist, and advise victims on the best course of action, whether it involves filing a lawsuit against Uber, the driver, or both.

Advocacy and Representation

These lawyers serve as advocates for victims throughout the legal process. They can represent victims in negotiations with Uber, communicate with law enforcement, navigate the complexities of legal proceedings, and ensure that the victim’s voice is heard and their interests are represented.

Seeking Compensation

Victims of sexual assault may be entitled to compensation for damages, including medical expenses, therapy costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other related losses. An experienced lawyer can help victims pursue fair and just compensation for their physical, emotional, and financial hardships.

Holding Uber Accountable

Legal action against Uber in cases of sexual assault can hold the company accountable for any negligence or failure in ensuring passenger safety. This accountability may push companies like Uber to implement stronger safety measures and policies to prevent similar incidents in the future.

Emotional Support

Dealing with the aftermath of a sexual assault can be emotionally challenging. A skilled lawyer can provide compassionate support, empathy, and understanding to victims while guiding them through the legal process with sensitivity.

Access to Resources

Uber sexual assault lawyers often have connections with support networks and resources that can assist victims in their recovery, including access to counseling, advocacy groups, and other services aimed at helping survivors of sexual assault.

It is important for victims to seek legal counsel as soon as possible after an incident to ensure that evidence is preserved, deadlines for legal action are met, and their rights are protected. Victims should choose a lawyer with experience in handling sexual assault cases and a proven track record of advocating for survivors’ rights.

Get Help With an Uber Sexual Assault Claim

If you or someone you love is battling the aftermath of sexual assault involving Uber, Kherkher Garcia can help. Our Uber sexual assault lawyers empower victims by providing them with legal representation, support, and the guidance necessary to navigate the complexities of the legal system. We are fierce advocates and will do everything in our power to obtain justice for the harm that you have experienced.

If you have questions or concerns about Uber sexual assault claims, contact us for a free confidential consultation. You can call us at 713-333-1030, or complete our confidential online form to get started.

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Bret Stanley

Bret Stanley

Firm Partner and Trial Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Injury Trial Lawyer and Firm Partner Bret Stanley. Bret is a practicing injury lawyer with more than 12 years experience. He has won Millions in Settlements and Verdicts for his clients. Bret’s practice areas have focused on helping clients with rideshare sexual assault, product liability, pharmaceutical device and drug claims, mass tort litigation, catastrophic personal injury litigation, complex insurance litigation, and Jones Act / Maritime Injury litigation.

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