Many states have different laws on this subject. In my state (Nevada) The insurer of the at fault party provides a rental car to the victim of there insured’s negligence. Here, the car is provided because it is the insurers obligation to it’s insured to pay the damages caused by there negligent insured not because the law requires that a car be provided to the victim. Not surprisingly the insurers try to point blame at every one other then there insured and even when the accept fault do so on a percentage basis to reduce what is paid out to the victim. This creates a horrible tension for victims on a tight budget take an amount less then the damages they are entitled to for the loss of there car or wait until the litigation is concluded. It is a very evil choice forced on the innocent. I don’t know the specific law of your state and can only give you these general observations which are not a substitute for a Tennessee Lawyers counsel on your situation, however I would be surprised if things worked much differently in Tennessee than they do here.
First, unless you personally have rental car insurance the other sides policy is not required to pay for a rental car for you. They are required to reimburse you for the rental car when the case concludes. This is unfair and puts pressure on people to settle for unreasonably low amounts but is allowed under hte law in TN.
You are no longer entitled to a rental car once the insurance company gives you the money for your car, if your car is totaled. Now I have always believed you should have the check in hand before you turn in the rental. After all the insurance company can hand deliver the check, FedEx the check, or put it in the mail where it may, or may not get lost. Since they choose how you get pay, I argue they choose how long you get to keep the rental car.
Althogh I am not very familuar with TN law, I do believe it will be left to the launguage in the insurance policies of not only your coverage but also the at fault party. I would look at your policy first and then havce your insurance company look into the coverages of the other at fault diver.
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