Texas Car Accidents Blog
Last Updated : May 7, 2024

Rental Car Cost Coverage After an Accident Explained

Posted on Saturday, March 2nd, 2024 at 9:57 pm    

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After suffering injuries in a car accident, you probably have a long list of questions about what happens next. In addition to accessing the medical treatment you need and coming to terms with the amount of work you might have to miss due to your injuries, the financial implications of the accident are likely to cause significant stress. Hospital and mechanic bills can pile up quickly. Furthermore, if you are unable to drive your vehicle due to accident-related damage, you will probably need to arrange for an alternative form of transportation, such as a rental car. Who pays for a rental car after a car accident?

Like many issues relating to automobile accidents in Texas, the answer to this question can be complicated. Whether rental costs will be taken care of by your own insurance company, paid for by the at-fault driver, or will require you to pay out-of-pocket depends on the unique circumstances of the accident. Speaking to an experienced Texas car accident lawyer can help you understand your rights and options. Here is a general overview of what you need to know.

Will Insurance Cover My Rental Car After an Accident?

Whether your insurance will cover the cost of a rental car after an accident depends on who was at fault for the collision and the specific types of coverage included in your auto insurance policy. Let’s explore the two main scenarios:

If You Are at Fault

If you are determined to be at fault for the accident, your insurance company will only cover the cost of a rental car if you have purchased rental reimbursement coverage as part of your policy. This optional coverage is designed to help pay for a rental vehicle while your car is being repaired due to a covered accident. If you do not have this specific coverage, you will likely have to pay out-of-pocket for a rental car. However, it is always worth speaking to your insurer to determine whether they have any contingency policies that might apply to your situation.

If the Other Driver Is at Fault

If the other driver is found to be at fault for the accident, their liability insurance should cover the cost of your rental car. In Texas, all drivers are required to carry a minimum of $30,000 in property damage liability coverage, which can be used to pay for repairs to your vehicle and the cost of a rental car while those repairs are being made.

However, the process of securing a rental car through the at-fault driver’s insurance can be more complicated and time-consuming than going through your own insurance company. If you have an experienced Texas auto accident attorney on your side, they can handle negotiations with the other party’s insurer to help the process proceed more effectively and efficiently.

How Long Will Rental Car Coverage Last?

The duration of rental car coverage will vary depending on your specific insurance policy and the circumstances of the accident. In general, if you have rental reimbursement coverage through your own insurance, it will cover the cost of a rental car for a set number of days or up to a certain dollar amount. For example, if your vehicle requires repairs, your policy might provide coverage for up to two weeks or $1,000, whichever comes first. If it is a total loss, your insurer might offer rental coverage for up to 30 days. Each policy is different, so you should always check the fine print of your agreement.

If the other driver’s insurance is covering the cost of your rental car, the coverage will typically last until your vehicle is repaired or until a settlement is reached. However, it’s important to note that the at-fault driver’s insurance company may try to limit the duration of rental car coverage to pressure you into settling your claim quickly. This is one reason why working with an experienced car accident attorney who can protect your rights and ensure you do not settle for less than you deserve is crucial.

What Type of Vehicle Can I Rent?

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The type of vehicle you can rent will depend on the specific terms of your insurance policy or the at-fault driver’s policy. Most policies will cover the cost of a rental car that is similar in size and class to your own vehicle. For example, if you were driving a compact sedan at the time of the accident, the insurance company will likely cover the cost of renting a similar compact sedan.

However, if your vehicle is a luxury car or a specialized vehicle, the insurance company may not cover the total cost of renting a comparable vehicle. In these cases, you may have to pay the difference in cost or opt for a rental car that is not an exact match for your own vehicle. A skilled attorney can help you secure a rental car that matches your specific needs.

Contact an Experienced Texas Car Accident Attorney Today

The aftermath of a car accident can be emotionally, financially, and logistically overwhelming. Knowing what steps to take in the days and weeks after you suffer an injury can feel particularly challenging if your pain levels or physical limitations are significant. However, you do not need to face this struggle alone. Working with a knowledgeable Beaumont car accident lawyer can give you the support and advocacy you need to make it through this challenging time with confidence.

The seasoned Texas car accident lawyers at Portner Bond, PLLC understand the difficulties you are facing at this moment. Our team has more than 85 years of combined legal experience, and we will help you secure the compensation and resources you deserve. We have earned a reputation for standing up against the big insurance companies, and we will not allow them to push you around. Call us today at (409) 838-4444 or contact us via our online form for a free consultation to learn more about how we can assist you.