Whether you’re traveling for vacation or for work, need a car while yours is in the shop, or need a unique vehicle type for a project, client visit, or something else, renting a car can be a big help. While rental cars are convenient, understanding the legal process in the event of an accident in a rental car can be confusing. At the office of Tetzel Law, LLC our auto accident attorney in Massachusetts is here to help. Reach out to our team by phone or online to learn more. 

Liability for a Rental Car Accident

When a rental car accident occurs, the biggest question that most people have is: Who will pay for this? Liability—or legal responsibility—for a rental car accident depends on fault in most cases. 

Just like in accidents involving vehicles that are owned by the driver, a full investigation will need to be conducted to determine fault for the accident. Common causes of car accidents include driving while distracted or impaired, speeding, failing to look, and performing illegal maneuvers. The driver who is at fault for the accident will usually be responsible for paying for damages.


Another confusing thing about rental car accidents is understanding insurance. All drivers/car owners in Massachusetts are required to carry liability insurance. Rental car companies in Massachusetts provide this coverage. In addition to liability coverage through the insurance company, if you have your own vehicle insurance, additional coverage types—such as Personal Injury Protection coverage, comprehensive coverage, and collision coverage may extend to the rental vehicle. As such, whether you cause the accident or are injured in the accident, there should be plenty of insurance coverage between your insurance, the rental car insurance, and the insurance of the other party. 

What to Do After a Crash

If you are involved in a car accident involving a rental car, you’ll need to take many of the same steps you would take if the accident involved your own personal vehicle: exchange information with the other driver, call the police, notify your insurance company, and seek medical care. In addition to these, don’t forget to call the car rental company immediately after the accident to report it. If you fail to report the accident, you could jeopardize your chances of receiving compensation and could face other penalties. 

Call Tetzel Law, LLC Today for More Information 

Driving a rental car carries responsibilities, and you are responsible for returning the rental car in the same condition it was in at the time you borrowed it. If you are involved in a crash, you will need to work with multiple insurance companies to determine who’s liable for damages. In addition to the rental car company and an insurance representative, you should also work with a skilled car accident attorney. Our Massachusetts car accident attorney is here to protect your rights and ensure that you get compensated. To learn more, call us today at (617) 742-1700 or send us a message to request a free consultation.