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Who Pays for a Rental Car After an Accident?

December 03, 2019

By van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim

Car accidents are not only frightening and confusing, they’re also inconvenient. Even if you do not sustain serious injuries as a result of the crash, you will likely have to live without your own car for a little while. Even minor crashes can result in damage that will keep your car in the repair shop for some time.

This is a problem, as you still have to run errands, buy groceries, and take care of your kids, all of which require a vehicle. The obvious choice is to rent a car, but do you have to pay for that yourself? Like so many other questions that involve car accidents in Pennsylvania, the answer is that it depends.

When Your Own Insurance Pays

If you carry Rental Car Reimbursement coverage on your own insurance policy, your insurance company will pay for the rental car. This add-on is relatively inexpensive, and convenient if you ever need it. If you have this coverage, you can use a rental vehicle until your car is fully repaired or you receive a settlement for the accident.

Always check with your insurance company before renting a vehicle. They will tell you if there are time limits for the rental coverage, mileage caps, and if you are limited to certain types of vehicles.

Once you’ve checked with your insurance company, using the Rental Car Reimbursement option is easy. Simply go to the rental car agency and provide them with your claim number and insurance information. They will help you find a vehicle and submit the claim to the insurance company for you.

When the At-Fault Driver’s Insurance Pays

If your insurance policy does not include Rental Car Reimbursement, you may be able to seek coverage for the rental car through the negligent, or at-fault, driver’s insurance company. You’ll still need to speak to the insurance company about mileage caps, time limits for your rental car, and to confirm that they will cover the cost. In these cases, you can again ask the rental car company to submit the claim on your behalf.

Typically, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will only pay when it is clear that the other driver was at fault for the crash.

When You Pay

If you do not have Rental Car Reimbursement on your own insurance policy and the insurer of the at-fault party is refusing to pay, you may have to pay for the rental yourself. The at-fault driver’s insurance company may still be liable for paying the costs of the rental, so make sure you keep all receipts so your attorney can recover this expense.

Were You in a Crash? Call Our Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyers

If you’ve been in a car accident and now need compensation for medical expenses, lost income, and a rental vehicle, call our Philadelphia personal injury lawyers now. At van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim, we know how to hold at-fault drivers and their insurance companies accountable for paying the compensation you need. Call us today at (215) 486-0123 for your free consultation so we can get started reviewing your case.



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