What Happens if I Crash My Car and It's Leased?
Car accidents are complicated enough, but if you are leasing the car involved, it can make the situation feel that much more difficult. If you have been in an accident in which someone else’s negligence caused your leased vehicle to be damaged, take a breath, consult with an experienced Tampa car accident attorney, and keep reading.
First Things First
When you leased the car in question, you purchased car insurance, and one form of insurance offered is gap coverage, which is intended to cover any gap between what the vehicle is worth when the lease ends (after being damaged in the accident in question, for example) and what the vehicle was calculated upfront to be worth at the conclusion of your lease. If you do have gap coverage, any difference between these two amounts should be covered.
If Your Leased Car Is Totaled
Let’s say that you’ve been in an accident and that your leased car has been totaled. The insurance coverage that you have on the car will cover the car’s worth at that point in time (according to its calculation metrics). The fact is that you do not own the car, and this means that you now owe the leasing company whatever amount is left on your lease. In all likelihood, the amount calculated in response to the car being totaled by the insurance company is not going to cover your bill with the leasing company, and this is where your gap coverage comes in.
If the Other Driver Is at Fault
If you total (or damage) your leased car as a result of another driver’s negligence, you can make a claim under his or her coverage – just like you would if you owned the car.
Otherwise, Your Claim Remains the Same
If you were seriously injured in the accident in question, you’ll pursue compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage for the damages you experience (just like you would in an accident involving a car you own), including (as applicable):
- Medical costs that can range from emergency care to hospitalization, surgery, rehabilitation, physical therapy, and more
- Lost wages that are a result of the hours you lose on the job
- Emotional pain and suffering that relates to the physical and mental pain you endure as a result of the other driver’s negligence
These are in addition to the property damage to the vehicle you are driving, whether you own it or are leasing it.
Seek the Professional Legal Guidance of an Experienced Tampa Car Accident Attorney Today
The Tampa car accident attorneys at Tragos, Sartes & Tragos are well-positioned to help you obtain the compensation that covers your full range of damages, including damage to your leased vehicle. Our dedicated legal team has the experience, legal skill, and drive to help guide your claim toward an optimal outcome, so please don’t wait to contact us online or call us at 813-223-6405 for more information about how we can help you today.