What to do if I rented a car and got minor scratches on rear left bumper?

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What to do if I rented a car and got minor scratches on rear left bumper?

I bought the full coverage insurance at the time. However, the rental company said that I did not file a police report for the scratches and sue me in small claim court and want me to pay $1800. They negotiated with me with the less payment of $1000, $1200, $900 and $850 from four diferent calls.

Asked on December 10, 2013 under Accident Law, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Look at the terms of the insurance you bought: are  they (the insurer or rental company--whomever provided the insurance) required to cover you under these circumstances (e.g. no police report)? If so, they'll have to pay for the damage.

If they are not obligated to cover you, your options are defend (if sued; you are only forced to pay if they file and win a lawsuit against you) if you feel that they will not be able to prove that you were responsible for the damage; or work out a settlement. Note that for the amounts you describe, it would not be worth hiring an attorney--a lawyer could easily cost more than $1200 (or even more than $1800); therefore, if you feel that they'd probably win if you were sued, you should probably take the lowest offer you can get them agree to.


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