Hit by a Rental Car in Florida – What Should You Do?

Florida is the number one tourism state in the country, and many of those millions of tourists every year choose to rent a car. Unfortunately, being in an unfamiliar vehicle in unfamiliar territory is often a dangerous combination, which is why our beautiful state has one of the highest rates of auto accidents in the country. If you are hit by someone driving a rental car, there are a few things you should know.

What to do in the event of an accident

Regardless of who is driving what type of car, there are certain things everyone in Florida should do immediately after an accident and within the subsequent days:

  • If possible, check for injuries of anyone involved. Do not apologize, yell at the other driver, or make any statements until you speak to the police.
  • Try to find witnesses who are willing to give a statement to the police.
  • Call the police or 911, even if the accident seems minor. Don’t let the other driver talk you out of that. A police report will guarantee that all facts are carefully collected. Give your testimony to the police officer only, and ask your passengers to do the same.
  • Take pictures or videos of the situation right away. If you need to move the vehicles for safety reasons, try to take pictures before moving them.
  • Collect the other driver’s name, address, driver’s license number, and insurance information as well as the other car’s license plate number. If the other vehicle is a rental car, collect the name of the rental company and its location.
  • Visit a doctor as soon as possible after the accident, especially a doctor who is familiar with auto accident injuries. Your Florida auto insurance includes Personal Insurance Protection (PIP) which covers up to $10,000 of accident-related medical expenses and lost wages, regardless of who is at fault. However, you must see an approved medical provider within two weeks of the accident or you will be ineligible for PIP compensation. 

When dealing with a rental car incident, usually the renter’s personal insurance policy will cover the accident expenses. Generally, the insurance company is not liable for compensation, unless there was some negligence on their part, for instance, insufficient upkeep on the rental or renting a car that had been recalled. A personal injury lawyer will be able to look closely at the car’s maintenance logs and the rental insurance policy to see how either may help you receive compensation from the rental company, if necessary. Another source of auto insurance coverage may be from the credit card used to pay for the rental. 

Getting the help you need

Being involved in an accident with someone driving a rental car is a little more complicated than when someone is traveling in his or her own car, because of the multiple types of insurance you may need to juggle: the driver’s insurance policy, rental car insurance, credit card insurance, and your own insurance policy. You may have a challenge contacting the person’s insurance company if he or she did not have that information with them at the time of the accident. 

Do not speak to any insurance companies until you have gotten advice from a competent personal injury attorney. Do not accept any settlements. As a lifelong Florida resident and experienced personal injury attorney, I know how to interact with insurance companies, whose goal is to pay out as little as possible to ensure their profitability. I know their strategies and will uncover all the evidence I need to gain the maximum settlement for your injuries. 

I am committed to helping Florida residents and visitors receive the help and compensation they need in the event of an accident that has caused them suffering, pain, and loss. If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, you deserve compensation for your medical costs and lost wages, both now and into the future, your property damage, and your pain and suffering. Contact me from anywhere in Florida, 24/7, at (954) 448-7288 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case. 

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