Los Angeles Uber Sexual Assault Lawyer for Survivors

Uber transformed transportation, making it easy to find a ride anywhere from busy cities to remote locations. However, the popularity of ridesharing comes with a cost—horrifically, many Uber riders (and even drivers) are sexually assaulted.

If you were assaulted in an Uber, you can seek justice through a sexual assault lawsuit. A lawsuit helps you reclaim your voice and speak out against those who harmed you, and it encourages Uber and other rideshare companies to protect customers. Filing a lawsuit brings attention to this issue, which can spare others from suffering the harm you suffered.

At Boucher LLP, we stand with sexual assault survivors to hold companies like Uber accountable for failing to keep passengers safe.

We empower survivors to share their stories, create positive change, and find a path toward healing. Our Los Angeles Uber sexual assault lawyers have confronted some of the largest institutions of power that enable abuse, and we’ve brought them to justice.

Here, we’ll share information on Uber sexual assault and highlight the benefits of a sexual assault lawsuit.

How Common Is Uber Sexual Assault?

When busy people enter an Uber, they’re usually focused on getting to their destination safely. They may not even consider the potential for harm—from car accidents to sexual assault—that can occur during their ride.

However, Uber sexual assaults occur more often than many people realize.

In December 2019, Uber published its “US Safety Report,” which revealed that in the United States alone, Uber received 6,000 reports of sexual assaults over the course of two years. The disclosure was made in response to widespread criticism of the company’s lax safety practices by legislators and advocates.

In 2021, Uber agreed to a $9 million settlement with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), the state agency responsible for regulating transportation network companies (TNCs) like Uber in California, for Uber’s failure to respond to the agency’s repeated requests for information relating to reported sexual assaults.

The settlement with the CPUC and the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) allowed Uber to avoid steeper penalties for withholding the requested information. As part of the settlement, Uber agreed to report future sexual assault information.

The Uber sexual assaults that are reported, are likely only the tip of the iceberg. NPR reports that Uber sexual assault claims may increase as more survivors come forward, saying, “Reporting rates for sexual violence and misconduct are notoriously low.” 

What Sexual Assault Occurs on Uber Rides?

Survivors captured in Uber’s recently released data include drivers and passengers.

Perpetrators also include both drivers and passengers:

  • Passengers are listed as the perpetrator in 45% of assaults;
  • Drivers are listed as the perpetrator in 54% of assaults; and
  • A third party is listed as the perpetrator in 1% of assaults.

As Uber’s US Safety Report revealed, the nature of the sexual assaults that have occurred during Uber rides varies widely. However, any type of unwanted sexual contact can have a profound and lasting impact on a person, depending on their circumstances or personal history.

Uber’s US Safety Report revealed that the most common forms of sexual assault to occur during Uber rides in 2018 were:

  • nonconsensual touching of a sexual body part (51%);
  • Nonconsensual kissing of a nonsexual body part (20%);
  • Nonconsensual kissing of a sexual body part (12%);
  • Nonconsensual attempted sexual penetration (9%); and
  • Nonconsensual sexual penetration (8%).

Survivors who experienced any form of sexual assault in an Uber should consider legal action. Taking action allows survivors to share their stories and protect other drivers and passengers. 

What Should You Do After an Uber Sexual Assault?

After an Uber sexual assault, you should take steps to protect yourself physically and emotionally. 

Seek Medical Treatment

First, seek medical treatment, if needed. If a SAFE exam (Sexual Assualt Forensic Exam) is needed, it is important it is performed as soon as possible in order to maximize the chances of collecting any DNA evidence that may exist.

The exam may also uncover injuries you are not able to see. A medical professional can also provide STD testing and medication to prevent or treat STDs. 

Report the Assault

At a minimum, report the assault to Uber, so Uber can take action that will hopefully prevent the driver from assaulting another passenger. It is important to note, however, that Uber has a policy of not sharing any information relating to reported sexual assaults with the police.

In order for the perpetrator to be held criminally accountable, you should report the assault to the police also. This takes a lot of courage and strength, so you may want to ask a trusted friend or family member to accompany you.

Alternatively, you can reach the trauma-informed sexual assault team at Boucher LLP, and one of our attorneys or legal team members can accompany you throughout the process.

The authorities will likely assign a victim advocate to your case to serve as a liaison between you and investigators. The advocate may also be able to provide you with a list of available resources to begin your path to healing from the trauma. 

Seek Mental Health Support

Sexual assault can leave survivors in need of mental and emotional support.

Survivors should consider these forms of support if needed:

  • Call the National Sexual Assault Hotline, available 24 hours a day, at 1-800-656-4673;
  • Find a therapist experienced in counseling sexual assault survivors;
  • Practice self-care by reducing stress and engaging in activities that bring joy;
  • Talk to a trusted friend or family member; and
  • Avoid watching media that may trigger memories of sexual assault.

Healing from sexual assault is not a straight path and it is different for every individual. When you are ready, seeking justice and holding those who harmed you accountable for their actions can serve as important steps in your path to recovery.

What Is a Sexual Assault Lawsuit?

A sexual assault lawsuit can hold sexual abusers and the people who enable them accountable for the harm they cause.

Unlike a criminal prosecution, which punishes wrongdoers by taking away their freedom, a civil lawsuit seeks compensation and other benefits to help survivors and protect others. For instance, you might request that Uber improve its safety practices or contribute to a sexual abuse recovery center as part of your settlement.

More than punishing wrongdoers or deterring others from committing sexual assault, a lawsuit enables you to take a positive step for yourself.

Many survivors feel empowered to speak out about their abuse and confront those that caused them harm. When this happens, a sexual abuse lawsuit can become part of a survivor’s healing journey.

Contact the Experienced Los Angeles Uber Sexual Assault Lawyers at Boucher LLP

If you were sexually assaulted in an Uber, you should consider speaking to an attorney experienced in handling sexual assault cases.

At Boucher LLP, our trauma-informed team of Los Angeles Uber sexual assault attorneys helps sexual assault survivors seek justice and a healing path forward.

We are honored to stand beside courageous survivors as they speak out to hold companies like Uber accountable, so they will take the steps necessary to protect others from suffering harm.

To learn more about how we can help you, contact our Los Angeles Uber sexual assault law firm for a free consultation. We can discuss your legal options, answer any questions about the legal process, and share strategies for protecting your privacy.

Our attorneys won’t pressure you to take legal action, but we will stand beside you with compassion, respect, and our full legal support if you decide to use your voice to create positive change.