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What about LIABILITY insurance on rental cars?

What about LIABILITY insurance on rental cars?

Old Oct 4th, 2002, 03:28 AM
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What about LIABILITY insurance on rental cars?

The insurance which you purchase with a rental car only covers damage to that car. You're not covered for any damage you might cause to other vehicles or property (should you be the responsible party in an accident.)I discovered that my auto insurance in the States covers liability in rental vehicles only in the US, Canada, and US territories. I've been checking around, and have not been able to find any insurance which would cover liability in rental cars outside the USA. So we've been driving VERY carefully. Does anyone know of an insurance company which provides liability insurance to USA citizens driving rental cars outside the USA?
Old Oct 4th, 2002, 04:16 AM
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Well if you have been driving rental cars without some sort of liability insurance you are just plain crazy. What a dumb thing to do. You either buy the insurance from the rental company at their high prices, or you get yourself a credit card that provides this coverage and use that to rent the car. Now, note that even if the credit card provides coverage, it MAY NOT PROVIDE IT in all countries. In those your only choice is to buy insurance from the car rental company. You really should become better educated on the ENORMOUS FINANCIAL RISK you are exposing yourself to if you drive a rental car without insurance. You might also want to rethink if you are getting coverage in Canada from your local insurance, as most insurers in the USA do not cover you any time you leave the borders of the US.
Old Oct 4th, 2002, 06:00 AM
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Since this a Europe forum, you are talking about rental cars in Europe. Under EU law, all rental cars must include third party liability cover in their basic charge, which is usually for unlimited amount. What is optional and most elect to buy is the CDW, which covers damage to the rental car. Some US credit cards cover this automatically.
Situation is different in the US, where the liability cover under state law can be very low, often only $25,000, but it doesn't usually matter as most American auto insurance extends to rental cars as well. This creates a problem for European renters, whose own insurance won't extend to US rental cars. Most wisely opt to buy a top-up cover increasing the ceiling to $1M or more, either from rental companies or more cheaply through brokers before departure.
Old Oct 4th, 2002, 07:14 AM
bob Brown
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My understanding is that the rental contract includes coverage if you smack someone else. Unless you take the Collision Damage Waiver, you are responsible for damage you do to the rental car. Some if not all credit cards claim to provide coverage.
I have taken some form of insurance to cover me if I damaged the car in a couple of instances. Once, in Switzerland, I took the CDW. good thing
because we were up in the hills and a herd of cows surrounded us and started licking the paint. While they did so, they clanged those big bells all over the hood and fenders leaving scars and scratches. I was powerless because there were so many of them.
When I turned the car in, the agent looked at the contract, looked at the scratches, and said "Have a nice day."
The incident was not without humour however. One cow stuck her head in the window to see what was what. Nothing like a dripping cow muzzle up against your face. I had forgotten just how big a cow's head is, but being nose to nose so to speak reminded me. Fortunately this one was very friendly; she just wanted to say hello.
Old Oct 6th, 2002, 03:19 AM
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ohmy, Alec and bob: Sorry you're all wrong. You're CDQ DOES NOT COVER other vehicles. You all need to read your rental contracts, CDW DOES NOT COVER DAMAGE OR LOSS TO ANYTHING OUTSIDE THE RENTED VEHICLE. Your credit card coverage does not cover anything outside the rented vehicle. Nor do these cover any damage or loss to your personal property, nor do they cover any personal injury to your or your passengers. (Though Travel Guard will sell coverage for personal injury in a rented vehicle) So, guess what, you guys, unless your personal auto insurance coveres your third party liability while you're driving in a rented auto in another country, YOU'RE NOT COVERED. That's why I asked the question in the first place. Does anyone know of an insurance company selling insurance in the USA which does cover third party liability in vehicles rented outside the USA?
Old Oct 6th, 2002, 03:36 AM
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Despite your SCREAMING to the contrary, ohmy, Alec and Bob are ABSOLUTELY RIGHT!

It is quite simply illegal for a rental company to provide cars in Europe without full 3rd party liability insurance coverage - you can't get a license plate for a car without full liability insurance in any European country that I know of. This insurance is linked to the CAR, not the driver. So, no worries there!!!

It is then up to you to decide whether you want coverage for possible damage to the car you are renting: you can choose to waive collision damage (CDW) and/or theft (TP) risks for an additional fee.

So, relax - you're covered! But still drive carefully...

Old Oct 6th, 2002, 03:43 AM
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To second Andre, et al,
From the Avis UK site
When you book an Avis rental car in the UK, the price you are quoted includes, by law, the basic insurance needed should you be involved in an accident. This includes Legal Liability, Third Party and Public Liability insurance. In addition, most rental rates will also include Theft Protection* and Collision Damage Waiver*. You can check what insurances are included in your rental price at the time of booking or when you reach the rental location
Old Oct 6th, 2002, 08:01 AM
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I recall that the basic charge (England - 1999) included some liability insurance, but they also offered a higher limit. SInce I considered the basic insurance a little low, I took the extended coverage. A bit pricy, but not terrible.
Old Oct 6th, 2002, 11:26 AM
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Martha, apparently we have asked the same questions because what you stated is EXACTLY what I have been told in my calls and queries.

I called my insurance company, they said my personal liability policy covers any rentals in the US, but not any other places.

I asked my CC company/companies these same specific questions and was told that I should decline the CDW - that it would be covered by my credit card, but if I was the CAUSE of a wreck, I was not covered my my credit card.

Of you people who've written responses here, are any of you with Car Rental companies? or do you have contracts or something you could forward offering confirmation of your explanations?

This seems to be one of those situations that gets a different answer from everyone you ask.
Old Oct 6th, 2002, 11:47 AM
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If you cannot confirm through your provider (be it credit card, regular insurance, special policy) that you will be covered for liability while driving a car in a foreign country, then by all means DO NOT decline the pertinent insurance when offered by the rental car agency in that country (which would be applicable to the laws of that country/governing body). Quite simple, actually.
Old Oct 6th, 2002, 12:23 PM
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I rented a car in France recently. My credit card company told me ahead of time that they covered the car itself, so I declined the CDW. My credit card does *NOT* cover any sort of personal liability insurance - only protection of the car itself against theft or accident.

Europcar, from whom I rented, said their basic rental rate included "public liability" insurance to protect other people and their property in case I was the cause of an accident (so it would pay for their damages but not the damages to my own car). The only thing *not* covered by either this public liability or by my credit card was *ME*. If I caused an accident and got hurt, neither of these two covered my medical costs. But I have my own medical insurance which covers me for these sort of things, so I figured I had all bases covered. I was very careful to ask detailed questions at the rental agency before I drove away in their car...

Old Oct 6th, 2002, 01:43 PM
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One other thing to consider if you wave the rental company's CDW and use credit card CDW.

Many of the CCs CDW coverage may:
1. Require that you make payment for car damages on the spot w/reimbursement coming "n" number of weeks/months later.
2. Will attempt to collect from your US auto insurer. This sets off bells and whistles at the US company.

Point is, make VERY sure you know the whats, hows and whens if you elect to use your CC CDW.
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