James S. Curtis
Can I Recover for My Injuries if I was Hit by Someone Who is Driving a Rental Car?
As we all know, the largest industry in the state of Florida is its tourism industry. According to Visit Florida, the state’s tourism-marketing arm, 131.4 million travelers visited the state of Florida in 2019 alone. Given the large number of travelers visiting the state, there are likely thousands of rental cars on the road at any given time. In addition, many, if not most, of those drivers are unfamiliar with Florida’s roadways. This increases the risk for car accidents.
When dealing with an injury claim involving a rental car, it is important to know who can be held responsible, and what insurance coverages may apply.
Who is Responsible for a Rental Car Accident?
Like any other car accident, the at-fault driver can be held responsible for causing the accident, even if that person is driving a rental car. Although t both the driver and owner of the vehicle (if different) can typically be held responsible, meaning you could sue both for your injuries if necessary, this is not true when a rental car is involved, absent special circumstances.
Federal law protects rental car companies by prohibiting people in the State of Florida from making a rental car company share liability for an accident solely on the basis that it is the owner of the vehicle. In order to hold a rental car company liable, more than mere ownership must be proven. Instead, there must be some proof of negligence on the part of the rental car company.
For example, if the rental car was not properly maintained and this contributed to the cause of the accident, the rental car company may be held liable for negligence if can be be shown that 1) the company was aware of a safety issue; 2) they chose not to fix it; 3) they then rented the car to a driver with that knowledge; 4) the driver had an accident due, in whole or in part, to the safety issue; and 5) you were injured as a result of the accident. Other examples of negligence on the part of a rental car company may involve things like failing to properly train/supervise employees, or entrusting the rental car to a driver the company knew shouldn’t have been allowed to drive. As you can see, finding sufficient proof to hold a rental car company liable can be very difficult.
Whose Insurance Will Cover Me for My Injuries
Caused by the Driver of a Rental Car?
The primary insurance coverage for injuries resulting from an accident with a rental car is the driver’s insurance. If the driver elects extra coverage through the rental car company, then that will be secondary to the driver’s coverage. If the driver does not elect extra coverage, then the rental car company will only be liable for up to $10,000 for your injuries, and this only applies if the driver does not have sufficient insurance coverage to compensate you for your injuries.
Consult a Qualified Florida Car Accident Attorney
When you’ve been injured in a Florida car accident, it is important that you consult with a qualified Florida personal injury attorney. The attorneys at SouthShore Injury Attorneys have extensive litigation experience and handle only personal injury claims. If you’ve suffered injuries in a Florida car accident, contact SouthShore Injury Attorneys at (813) 419-3866 for a free consultation.
If you have questions about your Florida accident case, you can download our Free Reports:
5 Medical Mistakes That Will Destroy Your Personal Injury Case
which are available at our website, or you can click the link provided. You can also contact us at (813) 419-3866 to talk directly to an Apollo Beach Personal Injury attorney now.