Rental Car Company and Liability for Negligence
The general rule in Florida is that the owner of the vehicle is liable for the negligence of the driver. For example, if Tom lends his car to John, and John hits Bob, Bob can make a claim against both Tom’s insurance policy and John’s insurance policy. Tom’s insurance policy pays first up to the limits of the policy. John’s policy is there to provide additional coverage if needed. However, the Graves Amendment prevents rental car companies from being sued when their driver is at fault in an accident. Therefore, a person injured by a driver of the rental car would have to hope that the driver carries bodily injury coverage. If not, the injured party may be left without any recourse. This is just another example of why drivers should carry uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. This coverage will protect you in the event that an at-fault driver does not carry insurance.
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