Who Is Responsible for a Rental Car Accident?

May 11, 2020

Being involved in a car wreck can be complicated and usually involves police reports, insurance policies, information exchanges, and lingering injuries. Even the most minor car accident can be problematic. It can get even more complicated if you happen to be renting the vehicle that was in the accident, especially if you are unprepared or unsure of what to do.

Check for Injuries

There are certain steps you should take if you get into a car accident in your own car, and it is not much different if you are renting the vehicle. The most important thing to do is to make sure everyone involved is okay. Call 911 after the accident occurs, even if you do not believe there are any serious injuries.

File a Police Report

When police arrive at the scene, it is important to file a police report. Take pictures of the accident and get the other driver’s information as well as information from any witnesses. The main difference in a rental car accident is that you would have to contact the rental car company as soon as you can.

Agreements With the Rental Agency

In most cases involving a car accident with a rental car, the driver of the rental car takes the responsibility of the condition of the car. After signing  the paperwork when renting a car, you are then under contract to be responsible for any damages done to the vehicle, whether it was your fault or someone else’s.

How you cover damages is different than an owned car. Your credit card on file, personal car insurance, additional coverage purchased from the rental car company, or a combination of all can be used to cover damages. 

Personal Auto Insurance

Most of the time, drivers have a personal auto insurance policy that will cover injuries and medical expenses. Many drivers will also have collision coverage and comprehensive coverage.

You may have to provide proof of your insurance coverage, like an ID card. Check your auto policy or contact your insurance agent before renting a car to know the details of your policy. 

Rental Car Insurance

Before renting the vehicle, an agent at the rental company will most likely ask you if you want to purchase their coverage, which could be a broad spectrum of coverage or specific items. Most of them will include coverage similar to your own personal insurance policy, so you may pay for both if you are not careful.

Other coverages will include collision coverage, liability coverage, or personal loss coverage. In some cases, purchasing rental car coverage may be used in combination with your auto policy in case your auto policy does not cover all damages. However, if you become injured in an accident that involved a rental car, it is best to speak to an experienced lawyer about your legal options.

Huntsville Car Accident Lawyers at Hodges Trial Lawyers, P.C. Help Those Injured by Negligent Drivers

Being involved in a car accident can leave you confused and in a chaotic situation, especially if there are injuries. If you were injured while renting a car, contact one of our experienced lawyers today. Our accomplished Huntsville car accident lawyers at Hodges Trial Lawyers, P.C. will get you the best compensation possible. Call us at 256-539-3110 or complete our online form for a free consultation. Located in Huntsville and Athens, Alabama, we proudly serve communities throughout North Alabama, Madison County, Limestone County, Marshall County, Jackson County, Morgan County, and Lauderdale County.