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Protecting Yourself When Renting A Car

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I read an article yesterday about someone who rented a car, turned it in in good condition, yet got a letter from the car rental agency months later, claiming they caused thousands of dollars in damage to the vehicle. Unfortunately, they had no way of proving that they didn't cause that damage. When renting a car, it is a good idea when you take it back to the lot, to take dated and time-stamped photographs of the vehicle and save them, along with copies of the return receipt, for six months.

- Submitted by WHIRLEDTRAVELER 7/14/2011 in Everything Else | 3 Comments
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Member Comments

PICKIE98 7/15/2011 4:16:00 PM

    I thought everybody did that anyway.. I have rented six cars in the past year, got a photo album for each one.. B4 and after, even inside the console, under the hood!
ERLYWA 7/14/2011 8:14:00 PM

    As an auto claims adjuster for a major insurance company, I can validate your tip here and say it's a MUST to protect yourself! I get lots of claims filed from rental companies saying my policyholders caused the damage.

The time/date stamped photos is good, but they will also say you just adjusted the date/time on your camera settings. The BEST thing to do is insist on a "walk around" at the time of rental, and when you return it. You and the agent walk around the veh, noting any damage on the care before you take it, and again when you return it. You both sign both documents and viola! Your proof that you didn't cause the damage!

I have denied many claims b/c my policyholders were saavy enough to get this document, so insist on it every time you get a rental! Great tip, whirled traveler! :)
SWAN47 7/15/2011 1:12:00 PM

    I agree the walk around is the best having had an incident of our own many years ago. We refused to pay for damage we didn't do. They turned us in to credit and it remained the only bad report on our credit for years.

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