Damage waiver and rental vehicles are usually considered as connected terms. While renting a vehicle company usually offers non-compulsory damage coverage which is known as loss damage waiver or collision damage waiver. Damage waiver covers the rental of the vehicle. At times it is even combined with the insurance and some other coverage.
Most of the people who rent cars during their vacations should always have knowledge about damage waiver and its legal ramifications. Renting a car is the most convenient way to enjoy your vacations as having a car means you don’t need to walk or struggle for the public transport and also its fare is comparatively lesser than the taxi services. But when you plan for renting a car make sure that you have a genuine insurance against damage or theft because in case car gets damaged because of you then you may be in trouble and may need to pay a lump sum amount.
If you met with an accident, the car rental companies usually cover costs to a third party. If you drive a car without liability coverage you will be accused by law. Usually the car rental companies’ vehicles have liability but there are few companies who extra charge for it. If you consider a case of Maryland, here for bodily injury the liability coverage usually starts from $20,000 and for property damage it is around $15,000.
While renting a car there are different types of damage waiver forms which are optional and includes extra charges over the actual rent. Here is a list of different property damage waiver forms:
- Loss Damage Waiver (LDW)—it is also known by the name collision damage waiver (CDW). It is basically for the damage occurred to a vehicle during an accident. Some counties have a policy that when you purchase a loss damage waiver then all the costs are paid after an “excess” charge. You can even make the amount zero with the purchase of “Super” insurance. But the LDW/CDW coverage is not insurance like a damage insurance policy.
- Supplemental Liability Insurance (SLI)—it is a damage waiver that is usually sold in USA and covers bodily injury or property damage caused to a person in case of an accident and not to a renter or driver.
- Personal Accident Insurance (PAI) – this type waiver is for the coverage of the cost of medication or accidental death for both the renter and passengers in case of an accident.
- Personal Effects Coverage (PEC) – it includes the cost of damage of the personal belongings of the renter when a car is given on a rent.
Damage Waiver – A closer look
Let us put some light on the risks involved with the damage waiver:
In case, customer is not paying for the damage waiver to the rental company and a rented car gets stolen or met with an accident or undergoes any kind of destruction then the rental company gets full repair cost including the administrative charges either from the customer or from the insurance company.
During rental period if a rented car is responsible for injuring a person or causes any damage to property, the customer is required to pay for all the damages. In most of the states of US expect California or Texas the rental companies include only those liability insurance that are defined by law while others include some more liability insurances.
Generally the rental company’s damage waiver form includes the damages caused by the accident as well as cost of towing a damaged vehicle. Other things like theft, vandalism, loss of use and liability are also included in these waivers. The point to be noted is that the waivers usually include many limits or the excess on the total amount mentioned in them.
You can get all such information about the damage waiver, etc on the websites of various rental companies under the headings like Policies, FAQ, Coverage, or More.
You can get the damage waiver from the car rental company while renting a car in almost all countries but in UK you can get it from car hire excess insurer or travel insurers.
Your damage waivers include the basic definition of insurance transferring some risk from the renter of a car to the rental company. As per the rental companies this waiver is not insurance rather it is just a clause giving right to company to get the many for the damages caused to their vehicle.