Challenging Your Boat Rental Insurance After An Accident

If you have an accident in a rental boat, you may want to challenge the boat rental insurance to recover costs of personal injury or property damage.

This can be a complicated process, and it may to years to completely settle the claims and have the arrangements made. However, you can help the process along if you follow some specific guidelines.

Step One – Gather Documentation

At the time of the accident, it is difficult to keep in mind all of the pieces of paper and documents that you should have.

However, this documentation becomes vitally important to the process of challenging your boat rental insurance company, so you definitely want to spend time taking care of it.

You need to have copies of your rental agreement with the boat rental company. They should have given you a copy when you signed the agreement, so hopefully you have it on hand.

If you don’t have the rental agreement for any reason, go directly to the clerk at the desk and get a copy, complete with your signature.

You should also collect any indemnity forms that you signed. Many rental and tour guide companies require all their tenants to sign documents indemnifying the company from any loss or injury to the clients. However, these documents can be, and often are, challenged in court.

Keep any medical documents, especially those that indicate the extent of any injuries to you or damage to the rental vehicles.

If the rental company has a checklist that they go over with renters before they allow a renter to take a watercraft out from shore.

Step Two – Contact the Company

Contact the company in writing as well as in person and indicate the problems that you have had and make your request.

Keep a copy of any letter you send, and make handwritten notes of any conversations you have with the rental company.

Follow the company appeals process. If the matter isn’t settled quickly, you’ll need to show that you acted in good faith and attempted to follow their established procedures.

Sometimes issues can be settled if there are small amounts of money or small compensations involved. In those cases, it’s good to go directly to the company.

If the issue is not immediately resolved to your satisfaction, you may want to protect yourself with step three.

Step Three – Find a Lawyer

If damages are severe and the rental company seems uncooperative, it is a great idea to retain an attorney.

Get a person who is expert in handling rental companies and rental agreements. Don’t choose an attorney simply because you know them or they are close by. Get someone expert in personal injury and working with rental companies.

Make copies of all documentation and give the copies to the attorney. Retain the originals in a separate, personal file to guard against loss or damage.

Step Four – Complete Formal Challenge

Sometimes just having an attorney motivates a rental company to settle the problem. If not, an honest, good attorney will help move the process along and protect you from errors


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