How Long Will Insurance Pay for a Rental Car After an Accident

How Long Will Insurance Pay for a Rental Car After an Accident

Car accidents are seriously disruptive events for so many reasons. While the top priorities for many are dealing with injuries and legal ramifications, in many situations, it can also result in a loss of your primary transportation.

This is why many automobile insurance companies offer rental car reimbursement if a car is damaged or totaled in an accident and you cannot obtain alternate transportation. But because repairs or purchasing a new vehicle can take so long, many people with this policy are understandably concerned about how long it will last.

The answer to this question varies according to your individual policy — and whether you have a reimbursement policy — but in many cases, it is about 30 days.

This guide will help you understand rental car reimbursement, what it covers, how long it lasts, how to file a claim, and how an experienced accident lawyer can help you receive any compensation you are entitled to.

What is Rental Car Reimbursement?

Rental car reimbursement is an optional policy offered by car insurance companies that will cover the cost of a rental car in the event of an accident that disables your car. Although it adds to the cost of an auto insurance premium, it is typically a small amount, potentially as little as three to four dollars per month.

Rental car reimbursement may be called rental car coverage or transportation expense reimbursement. This type of insurance can also be used to reimburse public transportation expenses, cab rides, or ridesharing expenses, depending on the individual policy.

How Long Does Rental Car Reimbursement Last?

The length of coverage varies according to different insurance carriers and individual reimbursement policies. Most policies have a maximum daily limit and a maximum number of days the policy can be used. For example, it is common for rental reimbursement to last for a maximum of 30 days.

It’s important to understand that because it is a maximum limit, the coverage will often end before that time, such as when the car is repaired, returned, or replaced.

If you have rental reimbursement coverage, ask your insurance company about your specific coverage.

What does Rental Car Reimbursement Cover?

To receive rental car reimbursement coverage, there must be a covered event, such as a car accident that has made your primary vehicle inoperable. Rental car reimbursement usually does not have a deductible, although vehicle repairs will generally have a deductible.

The coverage can cover rental car fees, fares for public transportation, taxi fares, and ridesharing costs up to a certain amount. Many auto insurance companies will contract with a specific rental car company and provide direct reimbursement to the company so the driver will not have to pay upfront. In other situations, drivers may need to pay and be reimbursed after.

There are certain expenses that rental car reimbursement won’t cover. For example, most policies will not cover related expenses such as gas or car washes.

Steps to Making a Claim for Rental Reimbursement Coverage

If you have been in an accident and will need a rental car, contact your insurance company and tell them your car is damaged and you require rental reimbursement under your policy. You can do this either while making your initial accident claim or soon after. Ask if there is a preferred rental car company to use.

Get written confirmation of your reimbursement coverage before renting the car. Depending on the policy, you may need to pay out-of-pocket, or if it is an in-network car rental, your insurance may pay directly.

In either situation, keeping the receipt for your records and/or for later reimbursement by your insurance is advisable.

When to Speak with a Lawyer

If you believe you are not receiving the rental reimbursement you are entitled to, or any other vehicle repairs or medical coverage after you have been in an accident, an attorney may be able to help. Car accident lawyers will have extensive experience working with the insurance providers of both parties and know how to protect your rights and ensure you receive fair and accurate compensation from your insurance or the other party’s insurance.

Call Clark Hartpence Law If You’ve Been in a Car Accident in Tampa Bay

If you or someone close to you has been in an accident, call us at (855) 680-4911 or schedule a free consultation. At Clark Hartpence Law, we have experienced attorneys who regularly represent clients involved in motor vehicle accidents, and we can help you determine the best next step.

Disclaimer: This blog is for informational purposes only and does not create an attorney/client relationship.