Whether you’re going on vacation, traveling for work, or waiting for your car to get out of the shop, you may find yourself driving a rental car for a short period of time. No matter how temporary your situation is, it’s important to understand what to do if you get into an accident in a rental car.
Make Sure Everyone Is Safe
After any Muncie car accident, check with the passengers of your vehicle and with the other car to see if everyone is safe and sound. Even though you want to preserve the accident scene as much as possible, the safety of everyone should be your first concern. If someone is hurt, do not hesitate to call 911.
In Indiana, it’s illegal to leave cars in the middle of the road after an accident if they’re safe to move and still drivable. If you can’t move the vehicles, stay in them as long as it’s safe to do so and wait for help to arrive. If your vehicle is unsafe to stay in (for example, if there’s a fire hazard), exit the vehicle and get off of the road a safe distance from the vehicle and wait for the police.
Take Pictures and Exchange Information
As with other Muncie car accidents, exchanging contact and insurance information and taking your own pictures of the scene is encouraged. One thing to note is that people may take advantage of the situation if you mention that you are driving a rental car. Only disclose that to the necessary people like the police officer who arrives on the scene and to your insurance company.
Contact the Rental Company
This is the added step that you wouldn’t usually do if you were in a Muncie car accident in your own vehicle. Each leasing agency is different, so each case will proceed a little differently. However, it’s a good rule to contact the rental company as soon as possible to alert them to the accident. If you purchased insurance through the rental company when you rented the vehicle, then the rental company will likely be able to advise you on your next steps.
Inform Your Own Insurance Company
Regardless of whether or not you purchased additional insurance with the rental company, keeping your insurance company in the loop is a good idea. Some policies come with special coverage for rental cars while others do not. If you did not purchase insurance with the rental company, you will likely have to rely on your own insurance to cover the damage to the vehicle.
File a Claim
If you’ve been injured in a Muncie car accident with a rental car, you may have the option of filing a personal injury claim. If you’re less than 50 percent at fault for causing the accident, you may be able to file your claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company instead of your own. If you’re trying to determine which insurance company should help with your medical bills and other damages, this is the appropriate time to stop and contact a Muncie car accident attorney. At Hensley Legal Group, we offer free consultations for Muncie car accident victims. We can go over the details of your specific case and let you know what your next options are.
Hire a Muncie Car Accident Attorney
Every car accident claim is different, and a car accident claim with a rental vehicle can get even more complicated. Come meet with the attorneys of Hensley Legal Group today to discuss your case, or contact us online.