Accidents happen all the time, and they don’t wait for you to be on your own vehicle before they happen. You just never know when you may get into an accident, and it could be while you’re out on that cool bike you just rented. So what happens if this is the case? What does the involvement of a rental motorcycle mean for my claim?
Liability for Rental Motorcycle Accidents
A rental vehicle rarely complicates the process following an accident. Typically, the accident is treated the same, and the process is usually the same. As in any accident, it all depends on the facts of what happened. The fact are investigated, and the driver at fault for the accident is then responsible for the damages.
If you were riding a rental and you were liable for the accident, your insurance company will pay for the damages. If you purchased additional liability coverage insurance from the rental company, this coverage can compensate victims for damages, as well. However, this is not the same as the rental company accepting liability for the accident. This only happens in rare cases where the rental company was negligent and played some part in contributing to the accident.
When can someone file a claim against a rental company after an accident?
It is rare for a rental company to be liable for an accident, unless their negligence played some part in the accident. If a negligent action on the rental company’s part directly or indirectly contributed to the accident, then they are partly or fully liable for the accident.
The rental company of a motorcycle or any vehicle can be liable for an accident if they:
Rented to someone with a suspended license- rental companies are required to check the license of whoever is renting, and to make sure the signature on the rental agreement matches that on the license. If they rent a vehicle to someone with a suspended or nonexistent license and that person is found liable for an accident in that vehicle, the rental company can be partly liable.
Rent out a motorcycle or a vehicle with a known defect- if the rental company is aware of a defect in their vehicle and they still choose to rent out that vehicle, then they are liable for an accident caused by that defect.
Fail to properly maintain the motorcycle or vehicle- a rental vehicle company has a duty to inspect their vehicles and properly maintain them. The vehicles available for rent should be safe to take out on the road by riders or drivers. Lack of proper maintenance can cause the rental company to face a product liability claim
In all of the above examples, the rental company has acted negligently, and contributed in some way to the accident if it happens. That is why in such cases, the rental company may be held liable to some extent. Consult with a motorcycle accident attorney to ensure that you have proper representation for your claim.