Paying for a Car Rental After an Alabama Car Accident

Damaging your vehicle in a car accident in Alabama can leave you without the transportation you need to visit your medical provider, pick up your children from school, and handle your other daily errands. However, even in cases where another driver is responsible for your accident, it can be weeks before you get your settlement check and are able to afford a new vehicle.

One of the most common ways to address this problem is to rent a vehicle until your car is repaired or replaced. Renting a car can be expensive, though, and you may wonder whether your insurance company will cover those costs. Here is what you need to know about who pays for a car rental after an Alabama car accident.

How to Cover Car Rental Costs After a Car Accident in Alabama

Who Pays for a Rental Car After a Car Accident?

A rental car can allow you to maintain your independence and continue your routine without interruption after an accident. But renting a car can quickly drain your finances, especially if you need to rent one for weeks or longer. 

For this reason, you may understandably hesitate to rent a car without first knowing who is responsible for paying for it. There are several ways you can cover this expense in Alabama, including:

  • Pursuing the other driver for reimbursement
  • Filing a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance
  • Filing a claim with your own insurance company

Of course, if you have the financial resources to cover the cost out of pocket, there is no law against renting whatever car you want and can afford while yours is being repaired.

If another driver is at fault and responsible for causing the accident, they may pay for your rental out of their own pocket. If such an offer is made, make sure to put the agreement in writing so that it is clear how much they are providing for your rental expenses and what, if anything, you must give up in return.

However, you will most likely seek reimbursement for your rental expenses from the at-fault driver’s insurance. In Alabama, the driver who causes an accident that leads to financial harm is responsible for reimbursing you for this harm. Instead of the driver paying for these costs out of pocket, their insurance generally handles it.

What Kind of Rental Car Will I Receive?

Unfortunately, you may not get the rental you might want following an accident if you rely on the other driver’s insurance policy. Most policies that cover a rental car’s cost will cap the benefit you can receive in a given day and limit the total amount of compensation for rental car expenses that can be paid out per claim.

For example, suppose that the other driver in your case ran a red light and crashed into your car. This driver’s insurance company may pay for your rental car but with limitations. The driver’s policy may only pay you $40 per day, up to a maximum of $500. Once you exceed this limit, you will need to find another source to pay for your rental car. 

Will My Insurance Company Pay for a Rental Car?

You might wonder whether your auto insurance carrier will reimburse you for your rental car expenses after an accident. Your carrier may offer this benefit, but it is rarely a standard term of your insurance agreement. 

Instead, you must typically purchase a separate rider or roadside assistance plan before your insurer will pay any of your rental costs. As with any other insurance company, the benefits your insurer would pay for rental costs are likely to be limited. Your specific policy with your insurer would determine these limits.

Alternatives to Renting a Car

There are other options available if you need transportation after an accident but prefer not to rent a car. For example, you can:

  • Borrow a vehicle from your family
  • Carpool with a friend
  • Use public transportation
  • Use the repair shop’s loaner vehicle

Each of these options has benefits and drawbacks. For instance, if your family has multiple vehicles, you could share a vehicle with another family member rather than renting one. This option is less expensive, but it can be hectic to ensure each person has access to a vehicle when they need it. 

Similarly, carpooling can be an alternative to renting a car. However, friends who provide you with a ride may expect some compensation for their gas and time. More than this, when you carpool, you are at the mercy of your friend’s schedule. If your friend is not available to drive you, you might need to alter your plans.

Public transportation is also an option for you in this situation, but only if your community has reliable options that can take you where you need to go. Not only this, but public transportation can become expensive, especially if you need to switch between several means of public transportation to reach your destinations.

Some repair shops may have a loaner vehicle they can offer you while your car is being repaired. If they do, they may allow you to use the loaner at no cost. You would only be responsible for keeping fuel in the vehicle. One downside to this option is that you do not know the quality of the vehicle you are getting. 

Become a Car Rental Provider with AlaWreck Network

If you are committed to quality service and own a rental car business, AlaWreck would like to connect with you. Become a trusted car rental service provider for injury victims needing a temporary car. Learn more by completing our short form.

How AlaWreck Can Help After a Car Accident in Alabama

At AlaWreck, we understand that it’s not always easy to know what steps to take after a car accident. That is why we offer accident reports, medical consultations, and car accident resources to our clients — all free of charge. We can even connect you with discounts on car repair services. 

Take advantage of our comprehensive services by contacting AlaWreck today.

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