Being involved in a motor vehicle accident is a frustrating and emotionally taxing experience. Even if you are fortunate enough not to suffer serious injuries, you still must deal with the hassle of having your vehicle repaired. Depending on the severity of the damage, repairs could take days to weeks to complete. Meanwhile, you may be stuck with no means of transportation, making it a challenge for you to go to work, run errands, or take your children to school. If you cannot borrow a car from a friend or family member, you may be left with the expensive option of renting a vehicle. But who will pay for this expense?
Who Pays the Rental Car Bill?
The deciding factor on who pays for a rental car is what party is at fault for the accident. In most cases, the at fault driver or the at fault driver’s insurance pays for the rental car.
The Other Driver Caused the Car Wreck
If another driver caused the car accident, their insurance company should pay for your rental vehicle. Generally, you are entitled to a vehicle similar to the vehicle you own from a rental company chosen by the at-fault driver’s insurance company. The rental vehicle should be available during the entire time it takes to repair your vehicle.
If You Caused the Car Wreck
You are responsible for paying for your rental vehicle if you caused the accident. You can pay for your rental fees out of pocket, but it is possible that your insurance covers the rental fee.
After an accident, it is essential to familiarize yourself with your insurance policy because this will determine how you will pay for your rental car. If your insurance grants rental fee coverage, your insurance company should pay the rental fees. Generally, rental fee coverage is optional insurance coverage for most policies that you must add to your insurance policy. It is also vital to note that rental insurance policies may limit the number of days the insurance company pays for a rental car. The insurer may also limit the amount the insurance company will pay per day for a rental car, which may not be sufficient to cover the rental fee for the vehicle you desire.
You can also file a claim under your car insurance policy’s collision coverage to pay for your rental car. The collision policy generally pays for a rental car while your car is repaired. Again, it is best practice to review your insurance policy and talk with your insurance agent about coverage and deductibles related to collision coverage and rental coverage.
Who is Liable for Damages to the Rental Car?
You are liable for any damages to the rental car during the rental period. Therefore, it is a good practice to speak to your insurance agent to determine if your insurance covers damages to the rental car.
The rental car company may offer you rental car insurance. However, if you want this insurance for your rental vehicle, you must pay for it. The at-fault driver’s insurance company will not pay for rental car insurance. Keep in mind that if your insurance covers rental cars, rental car insurance may be an unnecessary expense.
Other Considerations if You have Been in an Accident
If you are in an accident, property damage and finding a replacement rental vehicle are not the only issues that may arise. You may also have been physically injured in the accident and incurred medical bills as a result. Generally, property damage refers to damages sustained by your vehicle, whereas personal injury refers to physical injuries sustained to your body.
When the damage to your car is repaired, the insurance company may want to settle the property damage portion of your claim. Make sure that you receive an amount for the depreciation of your vehicle’s value because of the accident and the dollar amount of repairs incurred.
If you were physically injured, there is still the matter of your personal injury settlement. Personal injury settlements are more complicated and generally take significantly more time to settle.
The car accident attorneys of Van Law Firm assists clients in filing car accident claims. We fight to get you the maximum value for your injuries and damages. Call us now at (702) 529-1011 for a free consultation with an attorney.