What Happens if You Get Into a Crash With Someone Driving a Rental Car in Minnesota?
Car crashes are difficult enough without the extra wrinkle of the at-fault driver’s vehicle being a rental car. When victims find out, they may have a lot of questions about seeking compensation for their damages.
Is the rental car company responsible? Does the at-fault driver’s personal insurance apply to the crash?
If you got hit by a rental car in Minnesota and you have questions about the legal process, call TSR Injury Law to find out how we may be able to assist you. Our experienced attorneys have successfully recovered millions for victims of motor vehicle crashes.
Helping crash victims at no upfront cost. Call TSR: (612) TSR-TIME.
Can the Rental Car Company be Held Liable?
Victims of rental car crashes often want to know if they can sue the rental car company for damages. With rare exceptions, you will not likely be able to sue the rental car company for damages.
One of the possible exceptions would be if the crash was caused by poor maintenance of the rental car. In this case, the rental car company is responsible for maintenance of the vehicle, the driver is not.
There are numerous examples of maintenance issues that could cause a car crash, such as:
- Malfunctioning brakes
- Broken headlights, taillights or turn signals
- Old tires with worn down treads
- Underinflated tires
- Problems with steering
- Wheels that are out of alignment
However, the rental car company cannot be held liable unless you can prove the crash was caused by a maintenance issue. You must also prove the rental car company knew or should have known about the maintenance issue and failed to address it.
This type of case is complicated, which is why you need a licensed Minneapolis car accident lawyer managing the process on your behalf.
Can You Seek Compensation From the Rental Car Driver’s Personal Insurance Policy?
Minnesota requires all auto insurance policies to extend liability coverage to rental cars. This means you should be able to seek compensation from the liability insurance of a rental car driver’s personal insurance policy.
Your lawyer must prove the driver of the rental car was at fault for the collision. This means your lawyer must establish the driver was negligent and directly link this negligence to the cause of the accident.
Filing a Claim Against the Rental Car Insurance
Rental car companies offer additional insurance when you rent a car. This may be another avenue for recovering compensation after a crash with a rental car.
The question is, which insurance policy takes priority? If the rental car driver already has personal insurance, do you seek compensation from that policy first?
These are important questions that can be answered by an experienced lawyer. TSR Injury Law’s attorneys have extensive knowledge about seeking compensation after a Minnesota car crash. We know how to determine what insurance policies apply to the situation and which policy to seek compensation from first.
Using Your Own Car Insurance After a Rental Car Crash
Minnesota requires all drivers to purchase Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance. PIP provides compensation to the policyholder no matter who is at fault for the collision. That means you can seek compensation for your medical costs from your own insurance policy. It does not matter if the at-fault driver was in a rental car or not.
What You Should do After a Crash With a Rental Car
There are several steps you should take after a crash with a rental car to help protect your claim for compensation.
1. Call 9-1-1 Right Away
No matter what type of crash or how minor you consider your injuries to be, it is always recommended to call 9-1-1. That way the police will come out, secure the scene, investigate the crash and complete a report. The police report is often a vital piece of evidence for crash victims who are trying to prove a collision was caused by another driver’s negligence.
2. Exchange Information With the Other Driver
After calling 9-1-1, you will need to wait at least a few minutes for the police and other first responders to arrive. While you are waiting, you can exchange information with the driver of the rental car, including:
- Name and contact information
- Insurance information
- Name of the rental car company
- Driver’s license number
- Name of the driver’s personal insurance company
3. Collect Evidence About the Crash
Another step you can take while waiting for the police to arrive is to start gathering evidence. For example, you can take pictures of:
- Your vehicle
- The rental car
- Injuries that are visible to the naked eye
- Landmarks that help identify the location of the collision
If there are any witnesses, ask them for their contact information. Your lawyer can get in touch with them later to ask them about what they saw.
The most important thing to remember is to not gather evidence if you are seriously injured. While it can be very helpful to your attorney to gather evidence right after the crash, your health and safety is most important.
4. Get Treatment For Your Injuries
You should never wait to seek medical treatment after a crash. You do not want your injuries to worsen or possibly become life-threatening.
Many crash victims make the mistake of assuming their injuries are not that bad. Then they wait to seek treatment, their injuries get worse, and it becomes much harder to recover compensation. Waiting to seek treatment also gives the insurance company a reason to claim you were not injured in the crash.
Contact TSR Injury Law for Help After a Rental Car Crash
The legal process after a car crash can be a lot more complicated than victims realize. Trying to handle this on your own can be overwhelming. You should think about hiring a lawyer to guide you through each step.
Crash victims have been turning to TSR Injury Law for decades and we have secured millions in compensation on their behalf.
We know you may be concerned about the cost of hiring a lawyer. However, we work on contingency, which means no upfront fees.
Learn more by calling us at: (612) TSR-TIME.