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How Does an Accident Affect a Car Lease?

Posted in Car Accidents on November 17, 2021

If you drive a vehicle that you own, you may understand the basics of what will happen when you file an insurance claim after a car accident. If you were leasing the vehicle that was damaged, however, this can change the claims process. While some actions and processes remain the same, others are different for car accidents involving leased vehicles. Learn what happens after an accident in a leased car to correctly navigate this situation.

Do You Stop Paying the Lease?

No, you do not stop paying your lease after an accident in a leased vehicle. The car accident will not affect the lease. You will still be responsible for paying the value of the vehicle after a collision. If the vehicle needs repairs, you will get this done using the insurance of the at-fault party. Then, you will continue to drive the vehicle and pay for the lease as arranged. If the vehicle was totaled, the company will replace your leased vehicle and you will continue paying under a new leasing agreement.

 

Car Leases After an Accident

Who Pays for Repairs?

The answer to this question depends on the circumstances of your collision. The state uses a tort-based car insurance law to determine who pays for a car accident, whether the vehicle is owned or leased. This law states that the person or party at fault for causing the crash is financially responsible for related bills, damage and repairs.

If you cause a car accident in a car that you lease, you are responsible for covering repairs with your own car insurance policy. Most companies require more than the minimum amount of insurance to lease a vehicle. This insurance will pay for vehicle repairs even if you caused the crash. If you total a leased car in an accident, you may need gap insurance to pay the leasing company for the full value of the vehicle.

If another driver causes a car accident and damages or totals your leased vehicle, that driver’s car insurance is responsible for paying for repairs or the pre-crash value of the vehicle. If the other driver’s car insurance does not completely cover the necessary repairs, your own insurance may be used to supplement the benefits available. You may also be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible party to cover your losses.

What to Do After an Accident in Leased Car

Knowing what to do after a car accident can be even more confusing if you drive a leased vehicle. The insurance claims and recovery process will look different than after a car accident involving two owned vehicles. It is important, however, to take the correct steps and actions to recover both physically and financially. If you can, take the following steps if you are involved in a car accident while driving a leased vehicle in Dallas, Texas:

  1. Pull over close to the scene of the crash and call the police.
  2. If anyone is injured or might be hurt, request emergency medical personnel.
  3. Exchange information with the other driver. Do not admit fault.
  4. Take photographs and gather any other evidence that is available at the scene.
  5. Go to a hospital in Dallas immediately for professional medical care.
  6. Understand your leasing contract and your responsibilities after a collision.
  7. Call your own car insurance company and leasing company to report the accident within the first two days of the crash.
  8. Call the other driver’s insurance company to report the car accident.
  9. Follow your leasing company’s instructions for where to bring your damaged vehicle.
  10. Consult with a car accident attorney for advice before accepting an insurance settlement.

Determining fault, gathering evidence, filing an insurance claim and negotiating for a fair settlement are difficult tasks that can be even more complicated when a car accident involves a leased vehicle. At The Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert, P.C., our car accident lawyers can help you with the claims process after this type of collision. We can explain your legal rights and take over the claims process on your behalf. We will fight for maximum financial compensation after a leased car crash while you focus on healing from your injuries or losses.