If I was T-boned by another driver and my car was totaled but their insurer doesn’t want to provide a rental, can they do that legally or do they have to honor my claim?

He received the ticket from the accident.

Asked on October 12, 2015 under Accident Law, South Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Unless you sue them and win, anything the other person's insurer pays you is voluntary on their part. Remember it's the other driver's insurer their duty is to their insured, not to you. They, of course, want to pay as little as possible, so they will not offer everything you want. 
That includes, for example, that while they could pay your rental if they chose, they don't have to offer to pay it--they can refuse to pay for your rental and hope you'll take a settlement offer, for example, that does not include the rental cost.
If they don't offer you as much as you think is fair or appropriate, the only way to get what you think is right--such as your rental costs--would be to sue the other driver you sue the at-fault driver, not the insurer in court and win if you win, you'll get all the compensation you can prove was directly required by that is, directly caused by the accident. Of course, lawsuits are not certain--you could lose and get nothing. And they take time  and money though often not too much money if  you act as your own attorney, or "pro se" therefore, you are often better off taking a lesser settlement voluntarily offered rather than suing for more money.


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