A car accident can be a major inconvenience in multiple ways. One of the main issues is how you will get around while your car is in the shop for repairs. You will need a car to get to work, the grocery store, school and other places while you wait for a mechanic to fix your wrecked vehicle. One solution is renting a car. You may not have to pay to rent a car if you were not at fault for your car accident.
Who Pays for Your Rental Car?
Texas uses a fault law when determining liability for a car accident and related damages. The person at fault for causing your crash and property damages will be responsible for paying for them. One damage you can list in a typical car accident claim is the costs of renting a car while yours was out of commission. It will be the at-fault driver’s responsibility to cover your rental car costs. If the at-fault driver has adequate insurance, his or her liability coverage will pay for all expenses connected to the crash, including the costs of a rental car.
If you were at fault for the car accident that disabled your vehicle, it may be more difficult to obtain compensation for a rental car. In general, your insurance provider will only reimburse you for the price of a rental vehicle if you have optional rental reimbursement insurance on your policy. This is not a required type of car insurance in the State of Texas. Check your policy to look for this type of insurance after an at-fault auto accident.
If you do have rental insurance, your own company should pay for a rental car after you file a first-party claim. You should receive a complimentary rental car or reimbursement for what you paid for a rental, up to your policy’s limits. If you do not have rental car insurance and caused the car accident, you may not have any recovery options. You would have to pay out of pocket to rent a car in this situation.
How Much Is Available?
The amount of money you could receive for rental car reimbursement depends on the policy and circumstances. The policy’s claim limits determine the maximum amount recoverable. In general, an insurance company will only cover the reasonable expenses of renting a car. This means a rental car that matches the vehicle you own as closely as possible. The insurance company may not pay for a rented sports car or luxury vehicle, for example, if the crashed vehicle is an economy car. The insurer will only pay what is reasonable.
Do You Pay Upfront for a Rental Car?
Once you understand whose insurance will be responsible for your rental car, find out how the process works. Different insurance companies handle rental car reimbursement in different ways. Some insurers in Texas partner with rental car companies. If this is the case, you may not have to pay out of pocket to rent a car after a crash. Instead, the rental company will lend you the vehicle for free and bill the insurance company taking your claim directly. The rental car company and insurance company will work out the details of the payment between themselves.
Some insurance companies prefer claimants to pay upfront for rental cars and then seek reimbursement. If this is the case, you will need to pay out of pocket to rent the car in the beginning. Then, you will add the full costs of renting the vehicle to your car accident insurance claim. The insurance company will reimburse you for the costs of travel and car rentals in addition to other damages, such as vehicle repairs and medical bills. Either way, it will be the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier that is responsible for covering rental expenses incurred as the aftermath of a car accident. If you need assistance recovering the costs of a rental car after a car accident in Texas, contact a San Antonio car accident attorney near you.