If you’ve been involved in a car accident, you’re likely facing a lot of uncertainty: am I injured; will my insurance pay for the damage; how am I going to get to work or get groceries while my car is being repaired or replaced?
Each of these questions has a different answer depending on your situation, but if you’ve been in a car accident, your insurance company may pay for a rental car for you to use. Read on to learn more about how to rent a car after an accident, and if you still have questions, you may wish to speak to the Houston car accident attorneys of Lapeze & Johns today.
Insurance Coverage for Rental Cars
The first step to answering our topic question is determining whether or not your insurance policy covers rental cars in any circumstance. If you’ve been in an accident, you may wish to speak to your attorney before you speak to your insurance agent, but your agent can tell you whether or not a rental car is included in your policy.
If a rental car is covered, there may be a limited amount of funds to draw upon for this purpose. These funds were meant to be reimbursed for the insurance company by the at-fault driver. However, if a rental car is not included in your policy, you may be able to find other sources for this coverage, including uninsured motorists coverage in case of a hit-and-run.
Another source may be the insurance of the at-fault driver. If you’ve been involved in a car accident in which it was clear that the other driver was responsible, their insurance should provide payment for a rental car. However, they will likely try to resist paying if at all possible. Because of this, you may wish to ask an attorney for assistance seeking this type of compensation.
Proving Fault and Liability
If you were involved in an accident with a clear at-fault party, you will need to prove that fault in order to receive compensation. To do so, you will need to gather as much evidence as possible. This includes taking pictures of both vehicles, any damaged property, and any other conditions which may have contributed to the crash. If possible, ask any witnesses for their contact information, and take notes on any details you can remember. The at-fault driver’s insurance company will do everything in their power to avoid paying, so gathering strong evidence is essential.
Similarly, if it’s not clear who caused the accident, this evidence will be equally important to prove your innocence. Make sure that you receive a police report regarding the accident. If there are details you disagree with, ask the officer about adjusting the report to more accurately reflect the events that occurred. This can be considerably simpler if you have evidence of your claims.
Renting a Car After an Accident
Now that you know how to begin the process of renting a car after an accident, it’s worth considering how long you will be able to rent which type of car. Regarding the length of time, unfortunately, it’s often shorter than you need.
If your car is still in good enough shape to be repaired, the insurance company may provide a rental car for the estimated amount of time that it takes for those repairs to be carried out. However, that estimate is often shorter than the amount of time repairing your car will actually take.
If your car was totalled, the insurance company will still try to limit the duration of your car rental if at all possible to save on expenses.
In addition, the car made available to you may not be as nice as you would expect. In fact, insurance car rentals generally cover the most basic transportation available unless you need a specific vehicle for work or family transportation. The length of time during which your insurance will cover a rental car may be capped at a specific amount, so choosing a cheaper rental may be in your best interest.
Rental Car Claim Denied? Your Houston Car Accident Attorneys Can Help
Simply put, insurance companies are the business of making money. While you pay consistent rates for their coverage, they may make it incredibly difficult for you to actually access that coverage in case of an accident. This could mean claiming you were responsible for the car accident or that your policy doesn’t include such accidents in the first place.
If you’ve been denied compensation you feel you are owed after an accident, you can rely on the Houston car accident attorneys of Lapeze & Johns to represent you in either insurance negotiations or in civil court as needed.