The answer is quick and easy, as three states are involved. Renters need to know that when hiring a rental car in California (CA), Florida (FL) or Ohio (OH), they must take out State Liability Insurance in these states. They can do this at the RA acceptance stage, making sure they tick the appropriate box for the relevant cover. If in doubt, follow this link to the knowledgeable team at Bonzah.com.
State Minimum Liability, which is part of the Automobile Financial Responsibility Laws, apply to rental cars as well as standard owned cars in the USA. Liability Insurance is a minefield zone even for seasoned frequent travelers often seen in the rental car chaos at busy airports. Rental car companies do not provide the assistance they should, and certainly will not volunteer information. This is simply because they would prefer to sell their own rental car insurance products at inflated prices.
On the other hand, most renters would rather err on the side of caution than face a crippling debt because they did not fully understand or accept the liability options offered.
Most renters hope to get through the RA formalities as quick as they can. They don’t fancy long queues and they fear the legal jargon contained in the RA. It all comes down to ignorance, and fear caused by a failure to communicate openly on the rental company’s side.
Financial limits are clear in terms of the responsibility rules applying to State Minimum Liability level - click here for more information. The problem lies in understanding and complying with these laws effectively. As mentioned, rental companies are not pre-disposed to revealing what you – as the renter - need to know when arranging insurances at the rental car kiosk.
Renters have the Graves Amendment to thank for liability insurance in the rental car context. The amendment confirms that rental companies are only responsible to accept state minimum liability limits. These rates vary widely between states and act as secondary insurance. Moreover, they only kick in once your primary insurances are exhausted, assuming you have such primary insurance in place.
Exceptions to ‘The Rule’
Some states opted out of the Graves Amendment, and introduced their own rules. This is the main highlight of this blog article, having already identified the relevant states at the beginning. California, Florida and Ohio place the onus on the renter to accept the liability insurance cover for their rental vehicle, rather than imposing it on the rental giants.
Even before the amendment passed into state law, rental car companies were in the habit of drafting contract language that released them from vicarious liability. Not surprisingly, they offered temporary rental insurance for renters lacking coverage. Coverage, available either through the RA, or your broker took care of liability for any damages or injuries caused by a rental car that point directly back to you.
Hertz Reminder as to Why Bonzah.com Exists!
Promise us you won’t fall for the rental car companies’ collision damage waiver insurance options (CDW). These border on extortion that Hertz can charge $32 per day for damage coverage, whereas you can purchase coverage on Bonzah.com from just $7,99 per day. Buy before you arrive at the rental counter, and just decline the “optional” coverage offered to you at the pickup desk. It really is that simple.
We earnestly advise renters not to fall for the rental car companies’ damage insurance options (CDW). It seems iniquitous that Hertz can charge $32 per day for damage coverage, whereas you can purchase something similar on Bonzah.com from just $7,99 per day. Buy before you arrive at the rental counter, remembering to decline the “optional” coverage offered to you at the pickup desk.
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