Rental car accidents fall under the general umbrella of personal injury claims, but often involve decent insurance policies. This can be of great help in the event of a serious accident with or while in a rented car. Continue reading this blog for more information on rental car accidents and car accident loans.
The Aftermath of a Rental Car Accident
The necessary next steps of a rental car accident are generally the same as the immediate steps taken after a car accident with your own vehicle. They are the following:
- Seek immediate medical attention for you or anyone else who is suffering injuries.
- Report the accident to the police. Note that this does not always mean they will arrive at the scene.
- Exchange insurance and contact information with the other party.
- Get the names and detailed accounts of any witnesses present.
Because the accident involved a rental car, let the rental company know about the accident as well. They usually provide instructions beforehand on reporting an accident and/ or getting roadside assistance.
The Importance of Insurance and a Rental Car Accident
It is important to not assume that your own car insurance will cover a rental car accident. While doing so, remember the difference between the two types of coverage. Liability coverage pays for any injury you cause to others, as well as any vehicle damage you cause during a crash. Collision coverage covers the cost of the damages to your own vehicle – essentially covering the cost of getting your car fixed or replaced. Note that these types of coverage are applicable only up to the limits of your policy.
A Collision Damage Waiver
A rental car company will probably ask whether you are insured or not. However, they will usually provide you with a “collision damage waiver,” no matter what your answer is. A collision damage waiver (or a document with a similar name) essentially applies to the damage of the rental car in the event of an accident – shifting the repair or replace costs off of you and onto the company.
However, it is important to note that this waiver does not cover injuries to another party or passenger if you cause the accident. This waiver could also provide coverage that already exists through your own insurance policy or the credit card you used to reserve the rental car.
Holding the Rental Car Company Liable
A majority of rental car accidents are due to the fault of one or both of the drivers. But even though this is not common, there are a few instances in which a rental car company is legally liable for a car accident. If you are filing a personal injury lawsuit, keep in mind that the rental company is responsible for vehicle safety. If the rental car company failed to properly maintain the vehicle, they might be liable for damages. In these cases, they breached their duty of care by failing to provide a safe vehicle to their customer. This negligence and breach of duty of care could have played a role in the accident.
Let’s take a look at this example. Your rental car has an ABS braking system that is malfunctioning. Because of this, you are unable to stop your vehicle within a reasonable distance from another vehicle. Keep in mind that all of your actions are safe and within your duty of care. It is the malfunctioning braking system that ultimately causes the accident. This holds the rental car company liable for the the accident, since they are legally obligated to provide customers with reasonably safe vehicles. They are now responsible for covering the damages that arose due to the accident. These damages include past and future medical expenses and lost wages (which are fairly easy to determine). Damages also include pain and suffering (which is fairly difficult to associate with a dollar amount).
Rental Car Accident Lawsuit Loans From Uplift Legal Funding
If you are in a rental car accident and suspect negligence, it is important that you file a claim. Uplift Legal Funding will provide cash upfront to help with everyday expenses. This will ease the financial strain until your settlement arrives. We offer 24 hour car accident loans to plaintiffs nationwide. To learn more, give us a call at (800) 385-3660 or apply online.