Can I sue a rent-a-car company for renting out a car to an 88 year old man who failed to stop at a stop sign?

This accident left serious damages to my car and some minor injuries.

Asked on February 5, 2016 under Accident Law, Florida

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Prior to filing a lawsuit, it may be possible to settle the case with the car rental company.  The property damage claim (cost of repairs to your car) is separate from your personal injury claim.
Notify the car rental company in writing that you will be filing a personal injury claim.  When you complete your medical treatment and are released by the doctor or are declared by the doctor to be permanent and stationary, which means having reached a point in your medical treatment where no further improvement is anticipated, obtain your medical bills, medical reports and documentation of wage loss.  Your personal injury claim filed with the auto rental company's insurance carrier should include those items.
Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.
If the case is settled with the rental car company's insurance  carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.
If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the rental car company and the at-fault driver.
If the case is NOT settled, your lawsuit for negligence must be filed with the court prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.
In addition to the above claim against the rental car agency, you may also have similar claims against the driver's auto insurance company for property damage and personal injury.  The same discussion would be applicable.   


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