rental car accident - reporting process
February 27, 2018 3:45 PM   Subscribe

I rented a car and there was a collision and both cars are damaged. The sheriff on the scene said I was not at fault but I don't have a written report just a report number. I bought insurance through (Allianz) when I reserved the car. The car is from Hertz. Who do I contact first and what do I do? Alllianz website is asking for the rental claim number so does that mean I call Hertz first? Is there anything I should definitely not say?

I do not have any other insurance. No one was hurt.

I don't want to do something in the wrong order and screw this up
posted by AFABulous to Travel & Transportation (5 answers total)
this happened 2 hours ago on an interstate highway in Wisconsin if that matters
posted by AFABulous at 3:45 PM on February 27, 2018

Did you rent with a credit card? You may have other insurance.
posted by caek at 3:54 PM on February 27, 2018

the Allianz policy says "This coverage is primary." So do I call the credit card?? At what point?
posted by AFABulous at 3:58 PM on February 27, 2018

A "rental claim number". Well, Hertz calls their rental paperwork "Rental Record #" along with a number, and it is *possible* that this is what they want. It is also possible that it is something that Hertz has to provide. Either way, eventually you're going to have to call Hertz and deal with it.

However, now is the time to start documenting everything. Please try to take pictures of the damage to both cars, the area where things happened, anything that could be important. Also take pictures of the undamaged parts of your car. I know it just turned dark here in Wisconsin, sorry.

Hertz is somewhat more easygoing than some of its competitors, but rental companies are generally pretty terrible about racking up fees for damaged cars if you decline their LDW. I don't have any idea how well your alternative insurance will cover things.
posted by jgreco at 4:09 PM on February 27, 2018

You need to call Hertz and tell them - they’ll want a report of the incident from you and may even want you to swap out the car if the damage is very bad. Be honest and factual but do not share unnecessary information. Include the report number from the Sherriff. I’ve never done this in the States but I’ve done it in 2 different provinces (don’t ask), and they’ve never outright asked if it was my fault (once it was, once it was debatable).

Keep a copy of everything from Hertz, including the original contract which will show if you accepted or declined Hertz insurance.

Once you’ve done that, contact Allianz and initiate that claim. They will then send you a package with a list of everything they need (including all those copies you got from Hertz), proof that you bought their insurance, and the number of the police report.

I’ve claimed with Allianz twice, two different rental companies. Once it was under $1,000 in damages and I had to pay and they reimbursed me. The other was considerably more, and they covered it directly. In both cases it was a pain to fill out all the forms and coordinate information, but it wasn’t that hard and things were resolved relatively quickly. I also found the people on the helpline to be really helpful when I was confused or had a question.

Honestly, I worried more than I needed to. For me it wasn’t that big a deal in the end.
posted by scrute at 4:10 PM on February 27, 2018 [3 favorites]

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