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If you were involved in an auto accident where your vehicle was damaged or totaled, along with any injuries that you might have suffered, the loss of use of your vehicle has life-altering consequences. You need to get back on the road quickly to avoid suffering any further adverse consequences of the at-fault driver’s negligence.
While some auto insurance companies are better than others about covering rental car charges when their insured was at fault, most will only reimburse rental car costs later. That can be problematic for claimants who don’t have access to a line of credit or lack the cash to cover the rental fees.
Look at your own policy
Your own auto insurance policy might cover costs of a rental after an accident (at-fault or otherwise). Review your policy first to determine what your coverage entails. Sometimes it may be easier to negotiate with your own insurance company for rental coverage than it might to hash it out with the at-fault driver’s auto insurance company. They may be trying to minimize or even outright deny liability for the crash.
Stay on top of the matter
Insurance companies often try to slow-walk claims in the hope that the frustrated claimants give up in disgust. They may claim your information got lost, causing further delays while you resend it. They might switch your file to several agents during the pendency of your claim, with each claims agent needing to get “up-to-speed” on your claim.
Do not be deterred by these techniques. Remain polite, but insist on documented calls, emails and letters that you need approval and/or reimbursement for your rental costs after an accident caused by their insured. Reference points in the accident report that indicate the liability for the accident was attributed to their insured.
When you are stonewalled
Some claimants satisfactorily negotiate their own minor auto accident claims with the liable party’s insurance carrier. But not all insurance companies are willing to play ball. Some routinely deny actionable claims because they know that many claimants will end their pursuit of damages at that point.
Don’t be that claimant. If you are met by stonewalling, it’s time to up your game and retain a Stamford personal injury attorney to fight for justice in the Connecticut civil court system.