What Happens if You Wreck a Rental Car?

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What Happens if You Wreck a Rental Car?

Renting a car while on vacation or during a business trip can trigger stress, from operating a vehicle that is not yours to traversing unfamiliar roads and highways. The last thing you need is to get involved in an accident. However, Murphy’s Law, which states, “what can go wrong, will go wrong,” has reared its ugly head, as you find yourself dealing with the aftermath of an auto crash. Now, you have to ask one important question.

What happens if you wreck a rental car?

Getting involved in a car accident while driving a rental requires you to follow many of the same steps that you should follow in the aftermath of a car accident with your own automobile. However, the car rental agreement adds a few layers of complexity to the aftermath of an auto crash while driving a rental car. You have to figure out if your insurance covers all financial losses or if the insurance you purchased when signing the rental agreement covers your medical and property damage bills.

If you get involved in a vehicle collision while driving a rental car, you should hire an experienced car accident lawyer to help you sort out all the complex insurance issues. Filing an insurance claim for your own car after an auto crash is difficult enough, but it becomes much more difficult for a policyholder that wrecked a rental car. Hiring an experienced car accident lawyer ensures the adjuster processing your claim treats you fairly and that your claim receives the prompt attention it deserves. You also might have a strong enough case to file a civil lawsuit that seeks monetary damages.

For more than three decades, the car accident lawyers at Morgan and Morgan have helped clients file persuasive insurance claims, as well as successful personal injury lawsuits. Since 1988, Morgan and Morgan’s personal injury attorneys have recovered more than $20 billion in compensation for our clients. A large percentage of the compensation received came from favorable car accident judgments involving a client suing another party for committing one or more acts of negligence. When you reach out to Morgan and Morgan for legal support, you meet with a car accident lawyer who has experience handling vehicle collisions involving a rental car.

Schedule a free case evaluation with a car accident lawyer from Morgan and Morgan to get the compensation that you deserve.

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Get answers to commonly asked questions about our legal services and learn how we may assist you with your case.

  • What Steps Should I Take After a Rental Car Accident?

    Regardless of the vehicle that you drive, the immediate aftermath of a car accident unleashes a flurry of emotions, many of which are highly negative. You need to block out the negative emotions and focus on following the right steps to improve your chances of getting a car insurance claim approved and possibly receiving favorable legal judgment after filing a civil lawsuit that seeks monetary damages.

    Call 911

    Minor auto collisions, such as a fender bender at a traffic signal, do not require a response from the nearest law enforcement agency. However, a large percentage of car accidents require a response from the closest law enforcement agency for two reasons. First, law enforcement personnel secure the perimeter of a vehicle collision to prevent additional injuries. Second, the responding law enforcement agency is responsible for submitting a formal accident report, which describes in detail what caused the auto crash, as well as whether one or more parties should assume legal liability for causing the accident.

    Get Treated for Your Injuries

    Even at relatively low speeds, motor vehicle collisions generate a tremendous amount of impact that produces injuries for both drivers and passengers. Calling 911 also activates the emergency medical response team, which provides short-term care for victims that sustained serious injuries. Even if you feel healthy after an auto crash, you should eventually undergo a series of diagnostic tests to determine whether you developed one or more injuries that might produce delayed symptoms. Injuries such as whiplash and a concussion often take a few hours or even a couple of days to develop symptoms.

    If you wait too long to seek treatment, the attorney representing the other party might claim you did not sustain serious enough injuries to warrant immediate medical care.

    Gather Physical Evidence

    Although the responding law enforcement agency conducts an investigation of the auto crash, you should collect other types of physical evidence that might not show up in the formal police report. Photographs of property damage and the injuries you sustained help your car accident lawyer from Morgan and Morgan to determine what caused the collision, as well as whether another party committed one or more acts of negligence. You also need to obtain the names and contact information of every motorist involved in the accident, as well as every witness that saw what transpired before, during, and after the motor vehicle collision.

    Other physical evidence to acquire includes photos of the road and weather conditions at the time of the auto crash.

    Contact the Car Rental Company

    You should contact the car rental company as quickly as possible after you wreck a rental car. Ask the representative answering your call about how you should respond. Many rental agreements contain step-by-step instructions that describe how customers should respond after a vehicle collision. Most rental car companies list their phone number inside the rental agreement, as well as on a sticker attached to the inside of the rented vehicle. If you can operate the damaged vehicle, ask the representative taking your call if you should return the car to the rental car company’s office.

    Remember to write down the name and the employee identification number of the representative who took your phone call. 

    Contact a Car Accident Lawyer From Morgan and Morgan

    Before you contact your insurance company, you first should contact an experienced car accident lawyer to receive the legal support you need to recover from financial losses. Far too many insurance companies take advantage of policyholders that do not retain legal counsel when filing an insurance claim. For example, if you file an insurance claim without the legal support provided by an experienced car accident lawyer, the insurance company might deny a valid claim or approve a claim for a value that is far below the compensation that you deserve.

    Finally, you might have to submit an accident report to the car rental company. Read the rental agreement to determine whether you must file an accident report.

  • Does My Insurance Cover Rental Cars?

    Ideally, this is a question you should ask before you sign a rental car agreement. Nonetheless, one of the things that happen after you wreck a rental car involves referring to your insurance policy to see if it covers the financial losses associated with medical expenses and property damages bills. Contact your insurance agent to discover what type of temporary vehicle insurance you have, as well as what limits the policy has established.

    When reviewing your policy, you should look for certain types of insurance coverage. Liability coverage, which financial responsibility laws require for motorists, covers the injuries and property damage sustained by other parties. If another driver committed one or more acts of negligence, then your car accident lawyer requests compensation from the driver’s insurance company. Collision and comprehensive insurance coverage pay for the repairs done to your vehicle up to the coverage limit established by your policy. Medical Payments Coverage (MedPay) takes care of your and your passengers’ medical bills. If you live in a no-fault state, then your policy requires you to have Personal Injury Protection (PIP).

  • What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents?

    To determine whether another party committed one or more acts of negligence, your car accident lawyer from Morgan and Morgan first determines the cause of the motor vehicle collision. If poor road and/or weather conditions played a pivotal role in causing the auto crash, then it becomes difficult to prove negligence. On the other hand, if your personal injury attorney can demonstrate that one or more of the following acts caused the car accident, then you might be able to prove another party committed at least one act of negligence.

    Reckless Driving

    Speeding remains the most frequently committed traffic violation. A motorist who exceeds the speed limit has less time to react to sudden traffic changes than a motorist who follows speed limit laws closely. Speeding also exacerbates the impact of an auto crash. Another common type of reckless driving involves a motorist running a red light or stop sign. Your car accident lawyer can determine if another party committed an act of reckless driving by reviewing the footage captured by a traffic and/or security camera.


    Distracted drivers do not have enough time to react to sudden traffic changes. Acts like eating, applying makeup, and changing radio stations all can lead to a serious car accident. Despite states outlawing texting and driving, the dangerous practice continues to be a leading cause of motor vehicle collisions. Drivers that lower their heads to send or receive a text message place themselves and other motorists in harm’s way.

    Driving While Intoxicated

    A vast majority of states have imposed a blood alcohol content (BAC) limit of 0.08 on motorists operating all types of motor vehicles. Driving while intoxicated on drugs and/or alcohol significantly reduces reaction times, as well as leads to poor decision-making. For example, a driver under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol might try to pass other vehicles in a no-passing section of a road or highway.

  • Take Action Today

    If you wrecked a rental car, you should act with a sense of urgency to recover your financial losses. Your car accident lawyer interacts with the insurance company processing your claim, as well as the rental car company that rented you a motor vehicle. The question is not whether you should hire a car accident lawyer, but which one provides the strongest legal support.

    At Morgan and Morgan, we encourage you to read the reviews left by our clients on sites such as Yelp and Google. We have received more than 28,000 5-star reviews on Google, with clients praising our attorneys for operating with integrity and transparency. When you hire a car accident lawyer from Morgan and Morgan, you do not have to pay any upfront legal fees. Our contingency fee arrangement means we get paid when you get paid.

    Learn more about what happens if you wreck a rental car by scheduling a free case evaluation today with a car accident lawyer from Morgan and Morgan.

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