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Understanding Summer Rental Car Insurance Options

Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers Urge Consumers to Protect Themselves

Now that summer is here, many Americans are taking vacations and consequently using rental cars at increasing rates. Navigating the convoluted world of car rental insurance can put a damper on the season’s festivities. Fortunately, there are a few things consumers can learn and act upon to ensure they are protected in the event of a motor vehicle accident involving a rental car.

Rental Car Insurance Options

Car renters have a few options for rental car insurance, including coverage provided by their personal automotive policies, non-owner automotive insurance policies, credit card companies and rental car companies.

Many personal automotive insurance plans cover rental cars. However, the type of coverage and the extent of coverage varies from policy to policy, so smart consumers should always examine their rental car coverage before signing the rental agreement and hitting the road.

Generally, if personal automotive insurance covers both rental car liability and collision, the policyholder does not need to purchase rental car insurance through the rental car company. It is also possible for people who do not own cars to purchase a personal automotive insurance policy, known as a non-owner policy, that includes rental car insurance.

Credit card companies often tout rental car coverage as a benefit to cardholders, but typically this type of insurance only covers collision, not liability. This means that drivers may be on the hook for any injury caused by an accident with the rental car, which is a potentially costly risk to take.

Lastly, drivers can elect to purchase rental car insurance through the rental car company. These plans cover loss or damage to the vehicle, including theft, in addition to the statutory minimum liability coverage all rental car companies are required to carry by law. In addition to the loss or damage coverage, which costs between $20 and $40, drivers may opt for collision coverage for about $19 a day, extra liability insurance for about $12 a day and medical insurance for about $3 a day.

However, adding all these optional insurance policies may not be necessary if one’s personal policy already covers these liabilities. Therefore, it is vitally important that drivers review their personal policies and use that information to make an informed decision about opting into extra coverage at the rental car counter.

Making a Decision on Coverage

If drivers do decide to purchase more coverage, they should take the extra time to read the fine print on the policy agreement. Sometimes, policies dictate that only one driver is covered or make other demands and restrictions.

To determine the most appropriate choice for your car rental situation, review your coverage to make sure you are properly protected by liability insurance coverage. Having adequate liability insurance will help you avoid paying out of pocket for injury or property damage that occurs in an accident with your rental car.

Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC Handle Rental Car Accident Cases

If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident with a rental car, please contact one of our experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyers to explore your legal options. We serve clients throughout Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey. Call the legal team at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC today at 215-569-8488 or contact us online.