Issues Involving Accidents While Driving Rental Cars

If you are in an accident in New York while driving a rental car, what are your responsibilities, and what should you do? You should call the police to the scene of any accident and have them prepare a report. Make sure you get enough information from the police officer to make sure you know how to get a copy of the report. If possible get identifying information about the other driver and vehicle while at the scene. Get the names and contact information of any witnesses, don't assume that the police will record witness information. If you are driving a rental vehicle you should call the rental company to inform them of the accident. If you own your own vehicle you should call your own automobile insurance company, your own auto insurance will cover you while driving a rented vehicle, with the same limits of liability insurance as you are covered for your own car. There is no need to pay extra to buy insurance from the rental company. Your own insurance company will also pay for property damage to the rental car. However, if you do not own your own car, you should buy the insurance offered by the insurance company. As the driver of the vehicle you are liable for your own negligence. As owner of the vehicle, the rental company is liable for your negligence, however they are only required to pay up to $25,000, which is the amount of minimum insurance liability coverage that all cars must carry. Should the rental company pay out money to an injured party due to your negligence, they can choose to sue to recoup that money from you or your insurance carrier. The credit card you used to pay the card may provide additional coverage. You should notify the credit card carrier. If you are injured while driving a rental vehicle you should inform your own automobile insurance company, and the rental car company, as soon as possible and apply for no fault benefits. No fault benefits must be applied for within thirty days of the accident, and will pay up to $50,000 in economic expenses to cover medical treatment, lost wages and other expenses. You should also seek medical treatment as soon as possible. If you wait too long to go to the doctor the defendant is likely to argue that your injuries are not related to the accident. If you are injured in a motor vehicle accident in New York you should contact a New York personal injury attorney to learn about, and protect your rights. You should not give any recorded statements to any insurance companies or rental car companies until you have spoken to a personal injury attorney. Zalman Schnurman & Miner is a New York law firm that handles personal injury cases including motor vehicle accident cases. Call 1-800-LAWLINE (1-800-529-5463) for a free consultation.

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