At some point in most adult lives, you rent a car. You may rent one for a special occasion, for a trip, or because your own vehicle is in the shop. If you also end up in an auto accident with said rental, you may find yourself in a very tricky situation. Here is how an auto accident lawyer will help you proceed through the issues related to an accident in a rental car.
Covered or Not Covered
If you were driving the vehicle because your own car was in the shop and you have an insurance rider that covers rental vehicles, you should be fine. Under these circumstances, the rider extends to cover the rental because you needed it to get around while your own car was being repaired. (There may be some exceptions to this rule. The insurance company may try to get around it, but your lawyer can just file a suit against the insurance company if your policy clearly covers the rental.)
If you took the insurance provided by the rental agency, this only covers their property and not you personally, but at least you will not have to pay the rental company for the damages. If the rental company did not offer you coverage on their vehicle while you drove it or you signed a waiver, then you may not have been covered at all. If you can prove that you were not offered this kind of coverage, your lawyer can file a suit on your behalf to prevent you from having to pay for the damages on the rental vehicle. (However, most car rental places have this insurance clearly stated on their rental agreement, so this would be very difficult to prove.)
"No Fault" vs. "Who's at Fault?" States and Lawsuits
If the accident occurred in a "no fault" state, you are out of luck because both you and the other driver will share responsibility in the expenses. There are some states, however, where fault percentages are still used, and if the other person caused the accident by running a red light, speeding, failing to yield, etc., then your lawyer can sue him/her and his/her insurance company. You may still have to pay the rental company for the damages, since you are the one on the contract and they have your credit card/billing information. Your lawyer may be able to help you get that money back in a "who's at fault" state when the other driver is sued. You may also sue that driver for medical compensation if it applies.
To learn more about how your case, specifically, may proceed, get in touch with an auto accident attorney like those at J D'Agostino & Associates, P.C.