You rented a car from a professional renter and you ran into difficulties? The car category did not match your request, you broke down or the vehicle failed, the rental company refuses to return all or part of the deposit? What are your recourse and how to file a claim.
2 cases: claim before or during the rental
A dispute at the moment of taking control of the vehicle:
If you notice that the car does not correspond to your request (category, model, etc) or that it presents degradations which are not mentioned on the inventory of fixtures, ask that these points be corrected even before taking possession of your vehicle or feel free to file a claim for compensation. A lessor is subject to legal obligations, he must:
- to provide you with a vehicle in good working order
- give you a rental contract in which appears the status sheet of the vehicle and the various observations such as scratches, malfunctions …
Note: the clauses stating that the tenant takes the vehicle “in good working order and bodywork” or in “perfect state of maintenance” are abusive, simply because you will not have time to check at the time of taking charge of the car.
Litigation during the rental of your vehicle: In case of breakdown or accident during the rental period:
Contact your rental company or the assistance company indicated in your contract immediately. They will give you directions. Attention, if you go to a garage yourself or use a convenience store not indicated by your rental, the costs could be your responsibility.
Carefully complete the report: the reimbursement of repair costs (within the limit of the deductible) will be borne by the person responsible for the accident.
Note: You have a legal period of 5 days to inform the rental agency in case of accident and a delay of 48 hours in case of theft.
Case of an immobilized vehicle: the renter will have to compensate you for expenses related to your immobilization such as the expenses of lodging for example: provided that the renter or his company of assistance has given you his preliminary agreement.
In case of damage or scratches on the vehicle
– If no third party is identified: you will be considered liable for damages. You will then be required to pay the repair costs up to the amount of the deductible.
Note: the agency must provide you with quotes for repairs. If you think that the bill is abusive, you have the possibility to call an expert.
How to file a claim with the car rental company
Car rental claim
Good To know: You will not be able to put in place a procedure of complaint to recover all or part of your deposit that after restitution of the vehicle near the company of hiring.
The claim form
Gather all the documents you will need: your rental contract, the statement in the event of an accident, your bank statements in the event of a charge to you. Then ask for a claim form from the rental company.
The protest procedure is then started. Depending on its outcome, the rental company will reimburse you within a period of up to 8 weeks.
If the classic claim procedure does not succeed.
You can then set up:
the amicable conciliation of the dispute: you will address to your renter an express request by mail of refund of the deposit.
Amicable and judicial procedures: if this first step is not successful, you can then send a letter of formal notice by registered mail with acknowledgment of receipt to settle the dispute amicably.