Elder driver hit my car July 2011. Her insurance (Farmer’s) accepted liability but will only agree to pay a small portion of my rental car bill.

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Oct 3, 2011

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Insurance Question from Albuquerque, NM

Asked on 10/03/2011

Elder driver hit my car July 2011. Her insurance (Farmer’s) accepted liability but will only agree to pay a small portion of my rental car bill. Farmer's never gave me an answer other than "reasonable time" when I called (numerous times) to ask how long I could keep the rental car. I had the rental for a little over two weeks and turned it in immediately when I bought my replacement car. Now, they're saying they have a time limit on rental car reimbursement but they never told me this when I called.

Answer given on October 07, 2011

Rental car coverage for a person filing a claim against another insurance company is a part of the settlement. However, the insurance company does have limitations on how long they will pay for the rental car. It seems that the adjuster should have been clearer with you as to the time they would pay and you would not have had an issue.The rule of thumb is to pay for a rental car from the time liability has been accepted up to the date that a settlement check has been issued. A rental car will not normally be provided while someone searches for a replacement car if the settlement payment has been made.If the adjuster was not clear you should try to work out a resolution to the cost of the car. First, make sure there was nothing mentined in the letter which accompanied the check. If nothing was mentioned, talk to the adjuster about this. If you cannot work something out, ask to speak to a supervisor and explain the situation. You may not be able to get full reimbursement but perhaps a reasonable settlement.

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