We recently announced a new policy that states that Lyft drivers must accept riders with service animals. It’s also the law. And even though these kinds of pickups will be rare, we want you to feel prepared if it happens. Watch the video below for a few easy tips:
To Sum Things Up:
1. Be Prepared
These optional, low-cost additions to your car can give you peace of mind in the unlikely case that you get a rider with a service animal:
Blanket, to lay down on your back seat (though they’ll usually sit on the floor)
Allergy medicine (if you need it)
2. Keep A Few Things in Mind
- This isn’t just a Lyft policy, it’s the law.
Your rides are a lifeline for people with service animals.
Service animals come in all varieties (from poodles to pit bulls to chihuahuas) and assist individuals with disabilities like blindness, deafness, epilepsy, heart conditions, and diabetes.
There are no exceptions, even if a driver has an allergy, religious or cultural objections, or fear of animals.
If an animal is misbehaving or something is off, you can ask your rider two questions: 1) Is your animal required because of a disability? and 2) What tasks has your animal been trained to perform?
3. Ask Us Anything
We’re always available on the Help Center, but these are some of the common questions we get about service animals:
What if it’s a Line ride?
Accepting service animals is required for all ride types, including Line. If space is tight, you can suggest the passenger keep their service animal by their feet (this is usually what happens anyway).
What if I have an allergy?
We understand this can be tough for drivers with sensitive animal allergies. To make you the most comfortable during rides with service animals, it might make sense for those with allergies to consult a doctor on possible solutions.
What if it’s not a service animal?
Passengers are not required to prove their dog is a service animal, and service animals are not required to wear tags. If you’re not sure, we recommend you still accommodate them, as we don’t want you to get deactivated for guessing incorrectly. If something is off or the animal is misbehaving, see the previous section for the two questions you can legally ask.
What if I refuse to take the animal?
You'll face immediate and permanent deactivation from the platform if you intentionally refuse to drive a rider because of their service animal; and/or we receive two or more complaints that you refused to transport riders with service animals, regardless of your intention.
4. Remember This is a Two-Way Street
A driver’s refusal to accept a service animal will result in permanent deactivation from the Lyft platform. Likewise, if a passenger deceives their driver, they’ll be at risk of deactivation.
Please note that we take fraudulent cases very seriously. Contact us through the Help Center after the ride if you don’t think your passenger had a service animal. Be sure to include the ride and passenger information.
Thanks, as always, for helping everyone get where they’re going. They really appreciate it.