Lyft, Uber facing dozens of sexual assault, harassment lawsuits

The law firm has more than 750 separate sexual assault cases involving Uber or Lyft.

A California-based personal injury law firm has filed upward of 85 sexual assault and harassment lawsuits against Uber within the past two weeks. 

The firm, Levin Simes Abrams, also confirmed to FOX Business that they filed 32 cases against Lyft, although those cases were filed at various times beginning in August 2019.

In total, the firm has more than 800 separate sexual assault cases involving Uber or Lyft, all of which are in different stages of an investigation, including some that have already been filed, according to Meghan McCormick, an attorney with Levin Simes Abrams. 

Of the over 800 cases, approximately 117 have been filed, McCormick said. 

In terms of the type of sexual assault allegations, it ranges from inappropriate and sexual comments while passengers are locked inside the car to kidnapping and rape, according to McCormick.

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Currently, the firm is still looking into what happened in these cases and what they can confirm.  

In every case, though, the firm claims they have "notified Uber and Lyft" with as much information as they can "so they [the rideshare companies] can identify the driver and the ride at issue and take appropriate action on their end to keep future passengers safe," McCormick said.  

It's the firm's hope that, by bringing these cases forward, the firm can "find some form of justice for these survivors, and more importantly, to bring about the changes necessary to keep it from happening to someone else," McCormick said.  

These changes include having a camera inside the car that is not controlled by the driver as well as better screening and training of drivers, McCormick added. 

However, Uber told FOX Business that it has been working with the law firm for more than a year and that it has not been given enough information to help them identify a connection to the Uber platform such as date, city, location, names, and trip information of the alleged incidents. 

For cases where Uber was given enough information, the company says it has banned the drivers from the platform. Uber also confirmed that all of its drivers cleared motor vehicle and criminal background checks and met regulatory requirements to drive with the company. 

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In 2019, Uber said it was the first company to issue a comprehensive safety report, which disclosed data from the most serious safety incidents related to the platform. The report, according to Uber, showed that these incidents are "extremely rare" and that 99.9% of Uber trips end without any safety reports. 

"Sexual assault is a devastating crime and although no industry is immune from these issues, we remain steadfast in our commitment to support victims and help stop sexual violence by collaborating with experts, pioneering safety tech solutions, and setting the standard on transparency and accountability," a spokesperson for Uber said in a statement.  

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LYFT LYFT, INC. 51.12 -1.06 -2.03%

Lyft acknowledges that there are risks when using this service and told FOX Business that the company is "continually investing in new features and policies" to protect both passengers and drivers.

"What these women describe is something no one should ever have to endure. Everyone deserves the ability to move about the world safely, yet women still face disproportionate risks," a Lyft spokesperson said in a statement. "We recognize these risks, which is why we are relentless in our work to build safety into every aspect of our work."