CanI dispute a rental car company’sestimate of accidentdamage to the car?

UPDATED: Jul 25, 2011

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CanI dispute a rental car company’sestimate of accidentdamage to the car?

I was in a car accident where the other person’s insurance paid for a rental car for me. While I had the car there was hit and run damage done to it while parked. The rental company is saying that there is $4,000 in damage. Looking at the estimate they have 42 hours for body damage, 20 hours for painting, 7 hours for frame and 2 hours for mechanical. They are also charging me for 11 days that the car is unused. All the damage that was done was a small tear in bumper and trunk was slightly misaligned. If they take me to court can I request more estimates being that theirs is ridiculously high.

Asked on July 25, 2011 New Jersey


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can request that the damages vehicle be sent to an auto repair company of your choice for another estimate in order to see if the first estimate is in the ball park for the damages that the vehicle recovered.

Potentially your own insurance policy may cover the damages sustained from the hit and run episode while the rented car was parked. You should contact your own isurance carrier about the damages that happened and make a claim. You should request at least two additional estimates well before any court appearance on the accident and have those estimates in hand before any court appearance.

Also read the rental agreement that you have for the damaged car carefully. It sets forth the rights and obligations of you and the leasing company concerning any problems with the car. The agreement's language may have provisions within it that could assist you with the claim and repair.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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