Auto accidents can cause injuries that lead to costly medical bills, missed work, lost wages, and pain and suffering, and filing a personal injury claim can help. If you were injured in an auto accident in which the other driver was in a rental car, whether they were visiting your area or their primary car was at the mechanic, there are options available to you to ensure that you receive the damages to which you are entitled.
The Rental Car Company
In the event of an accident involving a rental car, the rental car company itself is usually not liable for damages. This is different if you are able to prove that some sort of mechanical failure or defect in the car caused the accident. This could prove that the rental car company was negligent for not properly maintaining their vehicles. As the injured driver, proving this is not your responsibility, but that of the other driver who rented the car. This information is still good to know in the event that the rental car company is responsible for the accident and paying your damages.
Rental car companies most likely always require that the driver who rented the car have their own insurance policy. Therefore, as with any other car accident, the fault laws of the state in which the accident took place will come into play. Fault laws include:
- Pure Comparative Fault States: The injured driver collects damages based on their percentage of responsibility, even if they share fault with the other driver.
- Modified Comparative Fault States: The injured driver can collect damages based on their percentage of responsibility only if they were less than 50 percent to blame for the accident.
- Contributory Negligence States: The injured driver can have their personal injury case dropped if they share any amount of blame for the accident.
- No Fault States: No matter who caused the accident, the injured driver seeks compensation from their own insurance policy.
The driver of the rental car also has additional options for more coverage than just their own insurance policy. For instance, most, if not all, rental car companies offer customers the opportunity to purchase additional insurance coverage in the case of an accident, which is helpful when driving an unfamiliar car in a most likely unfamiliar place. The credit card used by the driver to pay for the rental car can even offer its own coverage plan for these types of accidents.
To completely cover the costs of your compensation, the other driver may use some combination of their own insurance company coverage as well as the other two additional coverage options mentioned above.
Personal Injury Attorney
In car accidents involving rental cars, filing a personal injury claim can become confusing, lengthy, and complicated. Don’t hesitate to look into finding a personal injury attorney to help you through the process of determining fault, insurance company coverage, and the overall personal injury process. An attorney who specializes in personal injury claim cases will help ensure that you have the best chance at receiving the compensation to which you are entitled.