Since the likelihood of an accident with a rental car is so high, all rental companies offer supplemental insurance, and many also offer additional insurance-like coverage. Note that Illinois does not require consumers to purchase supplemental insurance, but it is often beneficial to do so. However, consumers should first check their own auto insurance policy as many extend to rental cars as well.The most common supplemental coverages are:
- Collision Damage Waiver (CDW)
- Supplemental Liability Protection (SLP)
- Personal Accident Insurance (PAI)
Rental agreements are often more complex than they seem at first look, and when a rental accident occurs, there can actually be a large number of parties involved, including the:
- Client, as the renter of the car, and his or her insurance company;
- Rental car agency, as the owner of the vehicle, and its insurance company;
- Supplemental insurance companies if the client opted for additional coverage;
- Credit card issuer, and its insurers, if the client opted for credit card coverage.
Since there are usually so many parties involved, the claims process and any necessary negotiation are often much complex than they are for a standard accident claim. Such processes often involved multiple lawyers and insurance companies, and it can be difficult for the renter to protect his or her rights and interests. Therefore, it is crucial that the renter hire a representation as soon as possible.
An experienced Chicago car accident lawyer can often access the multiple sources and layers of insurance available to mitigate any financial obligation. Such lawyers can also be very effective in situations where the rental company itself is responsible, in whole or in part. Note that rental companies have a legal obligation to ensure that the car is in safe driving condition. As part of the rental agreement, renters are required to inspect the vehicle, but they are only responsible for what they could reasonably identify.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers has experience representing people injured with the following auto rental companies:
In the event that you experience an accident with a rental car, you should:
- Contact the police immediately;
- Get medical attention;
- Contact the rental agency and comply with any reasonable instructions;
- If applicable, contact your insurance company and/or credit card company;
- Return to the car rental office.
Do not leave the car rental office until you receive:
- A rental agreement copy
- An accident report copy along with claim documents and repair estimates
- Photos of damage to all vehicles involved
Negotiating with an insurance company can be very difficult, and that is particularly true in this scenario due to the multiple insurance companies that are potentially involved. A lawyer experienced with rental car accidents and with personal injury can help you whether you are or are not at fault. It is generally in your best interest to involve your lawyer as early in the process as possible so that the lawyer can begin protecting your rights and interests immediately.
If you have been involved in an accident with a rental vehicle in Chicago or elsewhere in Illinois, contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers as we have experience dealing with such matters. Your immediate call can make the difference between protecting your financial assets and/or receiving the compensation that is legally owed to you. Contact us here, for a free, no obligation consultation.