Everyone has a different tolerance for risk and should make their own decision, but we can help you be aware of the risks you will assume if you decline the waiver. Please take time to consider the following.
Most auto policies do provide liability coverage for your use of a rented or borrowed car, just as they do when you’re driving your own vehicle – assuming it’s a passenger car, SUV, etc., and not a truck used for business.
Coverage for damage to the rented vehicle is less certain. If you have comprehensive and collision coverage on at least one of your vehicles, that same coverage will apply to a rented vehicle if you are responsible for repairs.
Certain expenses may not be covered by your personal insurance, and because of this risk, some choose to purchase the waiver from the rental company. These expenses include:
Loss of Rental Income. If the car rental company claims they are losing rental income while the car is being repaired, they may hold you responsible for the lost income. The rental company may charge their maximum daily rent amount, which can really add up if the repairs take an extended period of time.
Diminished Value. The rental company may claim that, because of the damage and subsequent repair, the vehicle is worth less when it comes to resale. Your policy may not pay for a loss like that, nor will it pay for other indirect costs, such as towing.
Operation by Unauthorized Drivers. Your policy will not pay for loss caused by someone driving the vehicle if that person is not covered by your rental policy. This includes a valet attendant parking the rented vehicle. (A similar restriction may be in the damage waiver.)
Risk of Impairing the Use of Your Credit Card. It is possible that, if the rental company holds you responsible for any or all of these obligations, the company may immediately place a charge on your credit card pending final resolution of the claim.
We hope this information will relieve some uncertainty and help you enjoy your upcoming vacation or business trip.
If you have additional questions, feel free to contact your local INSPRO Insurance office today.