Excessive Loss of Use Charges from Avis

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Dec 5, 2017
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Excessive Loss of use charges. The rental car was in an accident (act of god--hit raccoons on the freeway) and we called our insurance that night to file a claim. Avis picked up the car on the 6th. We're well aware that we need to pay for the damage to the car and are more than willing to do so. However, my husband's credit card was charged $1882.00 for the time the car was out for repairs and the loss of use fees were charging us for a 26 day rental. I find it hard to believe that it took Avis 26 days to repair the car. I am more than happy to pay loss of use for the actual repair time, but I feel that this is highly excessive. Can you help?
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
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Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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www.promalvacations.com
Did your own personal insurance pay for the damages? They should fight these costs - they are often nuisance fees and the car rental company needs to prove that the car could have been rented out during the time it was being repaired.

At this point, use our company contacts and write to Avis asked them for proof and a breakdown of the fees. You want to ask for proof the car would have been rented out during this time period.

We have a post on how to fight these - but you need to deal direct with Avis.

https://forum.elliott.org/threads/how-to-deal-with-a-car-rental-damage-claim.9703/
 
Dec 5, 2017
6
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Did your own personal insurance pay for the damages? They should fight these costs - they are often nuisance fees and the car rental company needs to prove that the car could have been rented out during the time it was being repaired.

At this point, use our company contacts and write to Avis asked them for proof and a breakdown of the fees. You want to ask for proof the car would have been rented out during this time period.

We have a post on how to fight these - but you need to deal direct with Avis.

https://forum.elliott.org/threads/how-to-deal-with-a-car-rental-damage-claim.9703/

Our own personal insurance is going to pay the damages as soon as Avis gets a hold of them, but they said they do not cover loss of use. Avis seems reluctant to even contact our insurance as the insurance agent has reached out to them repeatedly but Avis has not gotten back to them. I will begin the process of contacting the company contacts. In the meantime should I still ask my insurance company to fight the fees as well?
 
Dec 23, 2018
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One thing I have always found puzzling and unfair about loss of use charges:
They always want to recover the revenue associated with loss of use
But they don't credit the reduced expenses when the car is not in use (wear and tear, mileage based depreciation, etc.)
 
Dec 5, 2017
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One thing I have always found puzzling and unfair about loss of use charges:
They always want to recover the revenue associated with loss of use
But they don't credit the reduced expenses when the car is not in use (wear and tear, mileage based depreciation, etc.)

It just seems unfair to me that they take their own sweet time getting their car back in service and then charge us for the time THEY spent. It just seems arbitrary. I mean, I understand there are a lot of moving parts and no one person is to blame, but certainly they deal with this all the time and there is no way they are losing that much money from the cars that are not in use. They have THOUSANDS of cars.
 
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smd

Mar 14, 2018
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The problem is that the rental company has to prove they would have been able to rent the car out all that time. And they usually can’t.
I don't think one can make this blanket statement about loss of use.

The laws vary on a state-by--state basis. For example, in Colorado the courts have explicitly ruled that car rental companies do not need to demonstrate the car would have been rented.

This article has a discussion/more details: https://www.claimsjournal.com/news/national/2019/02/07/289134.htm
 

smd

Mar 14, 2018
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...they deal with this all the time and there is no way they are losing that much money from the cars that are not in use. They have THOUSANDS of cars.
Yes, but they need to purchase additional cars to ensure they have availability even when some cars aren't rentable. So the question is if this expense should be covered by everyone or just the renters who damage cars.
 
Dec 5, 2017
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I don't think one can make this blanket statement about loss of use.

The laws vary on a state-by--state basis. For example, in Colorado the courts have explicitly ruled that car rental companies do not need to demonstrate the car would have been rented.

This article has a discussion/more details: https://www.claimsjournal.com/news/national/2019/02/07/289134.htm

Thank you for this. I'm in CA and it looks like they have to provide proof that the car would have been rented, so that may work in my favor, and the accident took place in Texas, which also requires that it be proven with reasonable certainty, but has precedents for judgements for the companies. .Hopefully this will work out for the better. I would even possibly be fine with a reduction of fees, but 1882 is just excessive.
 
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Jan 11, 2019
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A man hit my husband while he was driving home from work. The man took responsibility thank goodness and offered to get us a rental to use while our car is being repaired. We still don't have a rental, they have been out of cars for over a week now. So if they don't have enough cars to rent because of a few being damaged, then yes, they are losing money. Probably not as much as they're charging but it also depends on how long it takes to repair the car. Our car is taking 2 weeks to be repaired and it really doesn't look that damaged but apparently it's $4600 worth. So you never know, Unless you get estimates yourself, which I did. I would fight it as much as possible, and they'll probably come down some. The advice given on this site usually works pretty well.
 

kenish

Sep 1, 2015
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1,816
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KSNA
Excessive Loss of use charges. The rental car was in an accident (act of god--hit raccoons on the freeway) and we called our insurance that night to file a claim. Avis picked up the car on the 6th. We're well aware that we need to pay for the damage to the car and are more than willing to do so. However, my husband's credit card was charged $1882.00 for the time the car was out for repairs and the loss of use fees were charging us for a 26 day rental. I find it hard to believe that it took Avis 26 days to repair the car. I am more than happy to pay loss of use for the actual repair time, but I feel that this is highly excessive. Can you help?
I'm sorry about the issues you're having. You alerted me to confirm my auto insurance policy covers Loss of Use.

Although it's good to audit and question Avis' charges, it will be difficult to contest and win if they've adhered to the terms of the rental contract you signed. "Excessive" and "unfair" are unfortunately opinions while the contract is legally binding fact.

FYI, it's quite possible the car was truly out of service the entire time. A friend was rear-ended in her Honda and she did not get it back for almost 2 months. Her car was on the Takata airbag recall and she was already on the waitlist to get it fixed. The dealer could not legally release her car until a new airbag could be installed, even though the accident damage was fixed in a few days.

Interesting but not directly relevant to your case- People who are in accidents in Juneau, Skagway, etc. receive large but legit LoU charges. The car has to be transported to Seattle or Anchorage for repairs which adds 2-3 weeks to the time out of service.

Last comment, either you OR your insurance company should communicate with Avis (preferably your insurance company). Your insurance premiums help pay for their legal experience and expertise and it will confuse matters if you're communicating with Avis in parallel to your insurance. FYI, I believe TX law applies in your case (the rental contract should say).

Keep us updated.