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Who’s responsible for a collision in a rental car?

On Behalf of | Jul 25, 2023 | Car Accidents, Personal Injury

You might be one of many people visiting Delaware on vacation this summer. If you traveled by plane or drove a long distance and didn’t want to put the miles on your vehicle, you may have rented a car to get here or shortly after you arrived. Renting a car is handy for getting around town when you’re staying at the beach. However, it can also be stressful, especially if you’re involved in a collision while driving a rented vehicle.  

Every rental company has its policies, yet you will no doubt find similarities between them, such as most companies throughout the country offer unlimited mileage. Before renting a vehicle, you must scrutinize the contract, especially the fine print. The most complex issues regarding car rentals typically involve insurance, which will become immediately relevant if you’re involved in a collision. 

Was another driver at fault in the collision?

Suppose you’re driving along a Delaware road, and another vehicle hits you because the driver blew through a red light as you were navigating a turn. In that case, investigators may determine that the other driver was at fault. To file a claim, it must be determined who is responsible for the damages. The answer depends on several factors, including whether you purchased rental car insurance.  

Sometimes, a driver’s insurance policy might include coverage for rental cars. If yours does, there would be no need to purchase a separate policy for vehicles you rent. You may also want to review the credit card company’s guidelines if you used a credit card to pay for your rental vehicle. Some companies offer insurance for rental cars. 

Was the rental car company’s negligence a causal factor?

Suppose a rental company rents a vehicle to an at-risk driver or provides a defective car in exchange. In that case, the company may be liable for damages in a collision. When filing a claim in civil court, you would need proof that the crash and injuries wouldn’t have occurred were it not for the rental company’s negligence. 

Since numerous insurance agencies, policies and other issues are relevant when a collision involves a person renting a vehicle, it’s always best to seek guidance before filing any claims. Someone well-versed in Delaware personal injury laws can help determine who is liable and can also be on hand to help resolve any complications that arise as a claim is processed.