What To Do If You Are In A Rental Car Accident
If have a rental car accident, take the same steps you would take in any other car accident:
You must also inform the rental company that an accident took place in their car. There should be emergency number in an easy-to-access place in the car, or on your rental paperwork. Call the number, tell the representative what happened, and ask them what you should do next.
Once you have left the scene of the accident, you will need to contact the insurance company to inform them that an accident occurred. Since you are driving a rental car, this will be the insurance company which covered your rental, whether it be your regular insurance, credit card, or the rental companys insurance.
If you were at fault, the burden to pay for the damages will rest on you and the insurance coverage you have another good reason to select your coverage carefully, and make sure you have liability included.
If the other driver was at fault, the matter will be treated like any other accident, and their insurance will pay for the damages. Typically, in these cases, the rental company will deal with the other partys insurance. In some cases, however, they may charge you directly, which will transfer the burden of dealing with the other partys insurance onto you. In these cases, its good to have a lawyer to help you through the process.
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The responsibility falls on drivers to take the next steps. Dont forget to:
- Make sure the scene of the accident is safe.
- Exchange information with any other drivers involved.
- Contact the rental company. They will tell you how to proceed, especially if the car is damaged to the point that you cannot drive it. Usually a sticker inside the glove box will list an emergency number.
A collision damage waiver, or CDW, will protect you from having to pay for car rental damage caused in an accident. If you dont get a loss damage waiver through the rental company, your auto insurance company will be responsible for paying for any damage.
If your rental car gets a flat tire you will likely be responsible for the repair or replacement unless you have some sort of insurance coverage either through your personal insurance policy, the credit card you used when booking the car, the rental companys roadside assistance, or another third-party insurance coverage you add to your rental. Your liabilities and the extent of insurance coverage can vary depending on the policy and company you rent with, so its important to read the contract with any company you rent or purchase insurance from to see if they cover flat tires.
Collision Damage Waiver Faq
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Do Rental Car Companies Offer Rental Car Insurance
Rental car companies do offer rental car insurance that you can purchase. There are four types of insurance coverage to choose from, including liability coverage, personal accident insurance, personal effects coverage and a loss damage waiver. After receiving a quote from your rental car company, be sure to compare pricing and coverage against other options.
Document Scene With Notes And Pictures
be sure to document the scene of a collision with lots of photos and notestake as many photos as you need
- Year, make, model, and color of each car involved in the collision
- Any obvious details about any cars involved
- Exact details of where the collision took place, including street names and lanes where the accident occurred
- How the accident took place
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Still Have Questions About Rental Car Damage
We at Sussman Car Rentals are proud to provide renters in the Abington, Jenkintown, and Willow Grove areas with the support they need during the rental process as well as when something goes awry.
After learning a little more about our helpful policies, we hope youre ready to rent a vehicle with us. Give us a call at the rental center today to get the process started or to speak with one of our professionals about our rental damage policy!
Make Sure Your Coverage Is Right For You
Be sure to investigate your auto insurance and credit card coverage before you decide whether to purchase insurance from Enterprise or other rental car companies. Be particularly careful to ensure you have liability coverage, because this is the kind of insurance your policies are most likely to leave uncovered.
If rental vehicles are not covered by your personal insurance or credit card, the rental companys insurance is often the best option. It may also be necessary for those renting large trucks or other vehicles not typically covered by other policies.
Also, if you have a higher deductible than the rental company is offering, you may find it prudent to buy their insurance even if your personal or credit card insurance does cover rentals.
There are many factors to consider, and the answer depends on your situation, and how much risk you are willing to assume.
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Find Cheap Auto Insurance Quotes In Your Area
In most cases, your own car insurance policy applies when renting a car, so you may not need to buy additional protection from the rental car company. Well compare the types of protection rental companies offer with what’s available from an insurer, and which gaps you might need to fill.
Note: this guide is about using your own car insurance to protect the car you’ve rented at a company like Enterprise, Hertz or Avis. For the car insurance coverage that pays for a rental car while your vehicle is being repaired, see our guide on rental car reimbursement coverage.
Contact The Rental Company
Contact the rental company and inform them what happened without excluding any detail. Reputable rental companies in Greece will handle recovery, repairs, and replace the rental car if need be and deal with the insurance companies or third parties involved in the accident.
Unless you clear with the rental company beforehand, most companies that offer rental services do not refund anything paid. Therefore, if you pay someone directly, the company will likely not give your money back. Do not take it upon yourself to pay someone during an accident in a rental car.
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Our insurance team is composed of agents, data analysts, and customers like you. They focus on the points consumers care about most price, customer service, policy features and savings opportunities so you can feel confident about which provider is right for you.
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All providers discussed on our site are vetted based on the value they provide. And we constantly review our criteria to ensure were putting accuracy first.
Purchasing Insurance Reason No 2: Your Credit Card Covers The Rest
Anything your own car insurance does not cover, it is likely that;your will. In some cases the credit card coverage is as good as or better than your auto insurance; in others it is intended to be secondary insurance to help cover anything your auto insurance does not.
Of course, you will need to pay for your car rental using that card; just having a qualifying credit card does not give you any protection.
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Personal Accident Insurance Vs Pip Medical Payments And Health Insurance
If you already have medical payments, no-fault or personal injury protection through your auto insurance policy, or adequate personal health insurance, you may safely decline the personal accident insurance that rental companies offer. This covers the medical fees incurred due to a car accident.
Depending on where you live, you may be required to carry such insurance on your personal policy. Currently, 15 states require PIP coverage to be included with auto insurance policies. Where PIP coverage isnt required, you may buy it.
Alternatively, you can turn to your health insurance to cover your medical bills from an accident. Since these costs can easily amount to tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars, be sure your health insurance policy is adequate to protect you. Insured drivers from these 15 states have at least some overlapping coverage from their PIP policies.
States that require personal injury protection coverage
- American Family
However, you should check the language of your policy or speak with your insurance agent to be certain you’re covered.
When To Consider Adding Rental Car Insurance
While rental car coverage invariably overlaps with your existing home or auto insurance, there are a few instances where adding rental car insurance could be beneficial:
- Deductibles may not apply with rental car insurance: If you have a high deductible on your personal auto policy, you could pay much less or nothing out of pocket on a rental car insurance claim.
- Avoid claims against your personal car insurance: If you have a claim, you can file it against the rental car insurance, which can avoid a potential rate increase to your personal policy.
- You have no coverage on your personal auto policy: If you don’t have comprehensive or collision coverage on your personal auto policy, adding the loss-damage waiver can protect you against damage to your rental car.
- You can temporarily increase your coverage limits: You may only carry the state minimum for liability coverage on your personal auto policy or maybe you aren’t carrying enough car insurance coverage for your own peace of mind while driving a rental car. Adding additional liability from the rental company means greater protection if you’re at-fault in an accident.
Provide proof of your car insurance when renting a vehicle or the insurance company may require you to purchase it from them.
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How Much Does A Collision Damage Waiver Cost
The cost of a collision damage waiver can range from a modest fee to nearly doubling the total rental price. Normal costs are $10 $30 per day for economy vehicles, or 25% 40% of the base rental price.
The table below provides the daily cost of a damage waiver from different rental car companies at different locations. The price you are quoted may differ, so its best to shop around and read your rental agreement.
Do You Need Rental Car Insurance
In most instances, rental car insurance overlaps with your personal auto insurance policy and you won’t need to pay for duplicate coverage. However, there are situations where it makes sense to pick up rental insurance. Understand what your personal auto policy covers before opting to sign up for rental insurance.
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If You Have Minimum Liability
In many states, vehicle owners are only required to carry liability insurance, at relatively low levels, in order to register and drive a vehicle. If you purchased a car insurance policy that only provides liability protectioncoverage only kicks in when you cause an accident, and it only covers injuriesand vehicle damage sustained by other people, in other wordsand no “collision” or “comprehensive” coverage, then your own car insurance policy won’t cover damage to the rental vehicle.
Note: The credit card you use to reserve and pay for the rental might provide coverage for damage to the vehicle. Check the fine print of your card agreement, or call the bank/card company.
I Didnt Damage My Rental Car So Why Do I Have To Pay
When Katherine LaFaso returns her Enterprise rental, shes charged $500 for damages she says existed before she picked up the car. But how can she prove it?
Question: I rented a car from Enterprise in Paramus, N.J., for a month while my car was being fixed due to an accident. It was the only rental available that day, and an Enterprise employee told me there was an open claim with some damages, which were pointed out to me. I was told I would be contacted in a few days to switch out the car for one without any damage, but that never happened.
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When I returned the car, there was a more detailed inspection done by a different employee. The damage in question didnt even look like damage; it looked more like bad repair work or an imperfection. But the bottom line is: I did not damage the car.
Enterprise charged my credit card $500 without my authorization, and my credit card company recently sided with me and credited my account. Enterprises damage-recovery unit is now giving me an ultimatum: Pay up, or well send this to collections, and you could face legal consequences. What are my options now? Katherine LaFaso, Paramus, N.J.
Answer: You could pay this bill or fight it.
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Damaged A Rental Car From Enterpriseworry About Charges
- 9347934 downvotes
i6s1 wrote: Repair it yourself. Even if they don’t rip you off, they can still charge you lost revenue and make you fill out a bunch of paperwork.
Does the rental contract allow you to work on their vehicle? Doubt it.
Actually no. But I just assumed that replacing the part does’t make it look different.
- 1510 upvotes
billford wrote: Sounds expensive especially if its a memory mirror, heated with blind spot indicators and needs to be painted.If its a plain mirror, may not be too much.Sometimes the mirror covers are separate and can be replaced at minimal cost.
Does the rental contract allow you to work on their vehicle? Doubt it.
rebel_rfd wrote: Do you own a car with insurance?I’m not sure how much the quote is, but if its more than $300, I would use your personal insurance under comprehensive.Most insurance companies transfer your insurance over to your rental, since its assumed you car is parked.This is assuming your comprehensive deductible is $300 and you can afford this small hit to your record, and the quote is over $300, like $700 or more.
Making a claim is super expensive in a long term and there’s deductible there.
Why don’t you have Credit Card insurance?
rebel_rfd wrote: Just a suggestion, you have to figure out what your best choice is, regardless, get it fixed before you return.
Failing To Check On Your Way Out For A Place To Refuel On Your Way Back
The best time to find a place to refuel your vehicle is immediately after you pick it up. As you are driving away from the airport or rental agency, take note of the local gas stations, and make a plan to return to the most easily accessible or best-priced of them at the end of your rental. The neighborhoods around airports can be confusing and unfamiliar, so you dont want to be driving in circles looking for a gas station as your flight time approaches. Figure this out on your way out, when you are not pressed for time.
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Do You Need Insurance On A Rental Car
The truth is that you should have some type of insurance on your rental car, whether it comes from the rental car company, your car insurance, your credit card or an independent insurer. Accidents do happen and if you are not covered or if the cost of the accident exceeds your coverage limits, you could be left with the bill.
How To Protect Yourself Against Car Rental Damage Claims
If you opt for the CDW when you rent the car, youre covered for any damage to the car. If you decline the CDW, you should take some just-in-case precautions.
- Renting from Hertz? You may be able to resolve small damages on the spot.
- When you get the chance, download your photos to your computer or upload them to DropBox or the cloud for safekeeping. Dont discard these photos until six months have passed since you returned the car. Car rental companies rarely if ever file a claim after six months.
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