Automotive

Do credit cards cover car rental liabilities?

  • Last Updated:
  • May 21st, 2017 11:47 pm
[OP]
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Jul 20, 2010
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Vancouver

Do credit cards cover car rental liabilities?

Seems like most cards just offer collision and theft protection, but don't mention liability (e.g. injuring another person, animal, property)

I used my AMEX Gold card to rent the car, but not sure where to find the insurance certificate (and I threw out the original ones that came with the card)
9 replies
Deal Addict
Dec 29, 2011
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Liability is covered by the car rental agency. Unless you're under 25, in which case the agency requires that you provide your own (which is impossible unless you already own a vehicle, making the rental moot).
[OP]
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Jul 20, 2010
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mofesto wrote:
May 18th, 2017 9:23 pm
Liability is covered by the car rental agency. Unless you're under 25, in which case the agency requires that you provide your own (which is impossible unless you already own a vehicle, making the rental moot).
So when I declined the insurance coverage (so that my credit card's coverage can take its place), it doesn't apply to liability is that right?
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Dec 29, 2011
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Nope, ie. Enterprise's insurance would pay for damage you do to another vehicle/person. When you decline the coverage, you only decline the collision/comprehensive/loss of use (which is covered by Mastercard).

Note: only applies to sedans and non-luxury vehicles (I think the vehicle limit is $65,000). Mastercard CDW cannot be used for trucks, moving vans, etc.
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May 24, 2008
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Liability coverage depends on where you rent the vehicle. For example, in California mandatory liability coverage which the rental agency has to include with the rental is laughably low. Credit card does not cover liability, so you're left with the option of paying for rental agency liability coverage or getting your own through a third party or through your own car insurance.

In other jurisdictions, liability coverage is higher, so do your research before you rent.
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May 10, 2005
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As you can see by the variety of answers, you had best ask your credit card company. They will link you to their underwriter and answer all your questions correctly.
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Nov 21, 2015
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mofesto wrote:
May 18th, 2017 9:23 pm
Liability is covered by the car rental agency. Unless you're under 25, in which case the agency requires that you provide your own (which is impossible unless you already own a vehicle, making the rental moot).
mofesto wrote:
May 18th, 2017 9:32 pm
Nope, ie. Enterprise's insurance would pay for damage you do to another vehicle/person. When you decline the coverage, you only decline the collision/comprehensive/loss of use (which is covered by Mastercard).

Note: only applies to sedans and non-luxury vehicles (I think the vehicle limit is $65,000). Mastercard CDW cannot be used for trucks, moving vans, etc.
Are you saying Liability insurance is included in the car rental price ? I always thought liability is covered through your own insurance or you have to pay extra to the rental car agency for it.
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Jun 19, 2001
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carmageddon wrote:
May 20th, 2017 11:39 pm
Are you saying Liability insurance is included in the car rental price ? I always thought liability is covered through your own insurance or you have to pay extra to the rental car agency for it.
Depends on where you are, In ON as your location shows, if you have an ON auto policy, that is your liability insurance for an ON rental car. if you do not have an ON polciy, the car rental cos policy is your liability insurance. In either car there is no paying extra for liability. it does nto work that way in other parts of the world
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Aug 2, 2001
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carmageddon wrote:
May 20th, 2017 11:39 pm
Are you saying Liability insurance is included in the car rental price ? I always thought liability is covered through your own insurance or you have to pay extra to the rental car agency for it.
Car rental agencies are no different than you or I; whatever the minimum level of liability that is required by their province/state is provided. I think in Canada it is a minimum of $200,000 in every province so they would provide at least that. In the US it is much, much different.

Because third party liability is a requirement of all provinces in Canada it is provided.


My advice is to always ask the entity providing the insurance. The downside is that the car rental agency may openly lie to you (whether intentionally or just ignorance) about the coverage they provide because it is not in their interest to have you rely on it. This would cover whether they are primary or secondary - as in, just like Uber's insurance which is secondary to your primary policy (only kicks in when the primary policy is not enough or is declined) perhaps the same is true for the car rental agency insurance.
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Nov 11, 2008
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Ontario is 200k, which is not much if you think about it...

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