Avis damage claim

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Oct 16, 2017
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#1
Hello there,

I have read through several of the threads in the forums regarding rental car companies and damage claims. I rented a car from Avis in Fairbanks, Alaska and am disputing their claim I damaged the vehicle. Unfortunately, I did not take pictures before or after, I did not think there would be any issues because it was a short rental. The claim packet they sent me includes the vehicle check-in report, which is time-stamped over 2 and half hours after I returned the vehicle, it notes the damages I did not cause. It also included a final bill from the repair shop that shows the "mileage in" at the exact same mileage as when I returned the car. I found this weird because the repair shop is about 8 miles from the airport parking lot where I returned the car.

Anyhow, I prepared a letter to dispute this claim and wanted some advice as to if I am included too much information when requesting additional documentation and pictures etc. Any addional advice is appreciated as well.



Dear Avis Asset Loss Recovery Department,


I received your claim for damage to the rental vehicle and I deny that I damaged your property.


When returning the vehicle to the Avis Fairbanks Airport parking lot, there was not an attendant in the lot so I went the front counter inside the airport terminal and stood in line. The rental agent working at the count (who was the same agent that was at the counter when I picked up the vehicle less than 24 hours earlier) asked if I had noted the mileage on the return ticket, which I did, he then said I could leave the keys with him and he would email me a receipt so I did not have to wait in line anymore. Being as it was a short rental (less than 24 hours and only 28 miles driven) and I had not caused any damage to the vehicle, I left the keys at the counter with him and thought nothing more of it. This was shortly before 10 am on 8/20/17 and at 10:11 am, I received the email containing my receipt.


I was not present during the vehicle check-in report, which I noticed did not happen until more than two and half hours later at 12:50 pm on 8/20/17.


I am requesting time/date stamped pictures of the alleged damages, time/date stamped pictures of the odometer showing the mileage when the damage was noted. I am also requesting the rental forms (vehicle check out/damage sheets and vehicle check-in reports) for the five rentals preceding mine and all rentals subsequent. Additionally, I am requesting the fleet utilization logs on this vehicle and copies of all documents from the repair company (Interior Auto Body) showing the vehicles actual mileage in and mileage out.


Regards,
 
Feb 9, 2016
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#3
Dear Avis Asset Loss Recovery Department,


I received your claim for damage to the rental vehicle. I did not, and I deny, that I caused damage to your rental vehicle. The damage noted after my return was present when I rented the vehicle.


When returning the vehicle to the Avis Fairbanks Airport parking lot, at 10 am on 8/20/17, there was no attendant in the lot. Therefore, I entered the building to complete my return at the front counter. The agent at the counter was the same person whom had rented me the vehicle. We exchanged pleasantries, I informed her/him that I had noted the mileage on the return (28 total miles driven) and handed over the keys. I was informed that I would be receiving a receipt via email. at 10:11 am I received my receipt.

I was not present during the vehicle check-in report, which I noticed did not happen until more than two and half hours later at 12:50 pm on 8/20/17. (I don't know that this is relevant) Since I was not present for this inspection, and since no damage occurred during my 24 hour rental period, I am requesting the following documentation:

time/date stamped pictures of the alleged damages
time/date stamped pictures of the odometer showing the mileage when the damage was noted.
rental forms (vehicle check out/damage sheets and vehicle check-in reports) for the five rentals preceding mine and all rentals subsequent.
fleet utilization logs on this vehicle
copies of all documents from the repair company (Interior Auto Body) showing the vehicles actual mileage in and mileage out.

As mentioned, no damage occurred during my rental period. My purpose in requesting and reviewing these documents is to determine when this damage did occur. so that you can assign damage, and damage repair costs, to the appropriate individual.


Thak you for your prompt attention to this matter



Regards
 
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Likes: Ailoilo
Feb 9, 2016
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#4
No, you should not inform your insurance company. Fight the battle directly with the car company first and see where you get too.
 
Oct 16, 2017
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#5
Update: The damages they claim are to both front rims and damage to the passenger side front bumper. They sent pictures that are dated/timed 3 hours after I dropped it off. Now the "scruffs" on the rims "could" have been caused by me but I really do not remember hitting a curb or anything. The picture of the front passenger bumper does not show anything, then there is a picture of the underside of the front bumper showing OLD scuff marks. Aren't most undersides of front bumpers scuffed like that? Also, according to the repair shop bill copy they originally sent with the claim, doesn't show they repaired the rims, only the bumper. They didn't send me anything else, just the pictures. They said they don’t provide fleet utilization logs and it’s not in accordance with Alaska State Law that they need to. Should I ask for the rental records preceding and after mine again? I attached the bumper pictures they sent me so I can get your opinions. bumper.jpg bumper 2.jpg
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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12,256
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New York
www.promalvacations.com
#6
Yes. They may give you a story that they do t have to provide those either but State you need to see them to prove the rentals before yours didn't have the damage shown. If they do- the damage was existing when you picked up the car and you aren't responsible for them.

My wife and I picked up a rental car today. After she videotaped the whole car, we drive out and there is an engine light on. We pull the car over to take out the manual to see what the light meant- it needed service by the dealer. She drove right back to Hertz and turned the car back in to exchange for another. Luckily I had made friends with the guy that accepts the returns because we were both in the Navy. Guy bent over backwards to help. We traded the car and I had to patiently sit while she bideo'd the second car again.

Never rent a car without taking either video or pictures of the full car when you pick it up and when you bring it back. It's the only proof you have that the car was picked up and returned in the same condition.
 
Feb 9, 2016
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#7
First of all I would respond and tell them

"thank you for the pictures but I cant verify that this is THE vehicle I rented. I am going to need pictures o the damages with the plate number in them"

Shoot, I would reply back and simply say "thank you for the pictures but this is not the vehicle I rented" and then sit back and wait for them to pictorially prove it to you.

There is NO LICENSE PLATE in the picture... you even see the OUTLINE of the license plate...which means they COULD HAVE included the plate number, but chose not to.

As well, those front bumper scuffs have RUST!!! and I don't see date/time stamps on those pics. Let's assume the pics were taken after your rental....there wouldn't be rust.

Ridiculous.

Also, be sure to image search those pictures to make sure they have not been used before, anywhere, for any reason. If you can find them online, you know the claim is bogus.
https://www.google.com/imghp?gws_rd=ssl
 
Oct 16, 2017
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#8
They sent more pictures than just those 2, including ones with the license plate but never the plate and the damage together. The date/time isn't stamped on them but when you look at the picture properties, it shows the date and time.
 
Feb 9, 2016
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#10
Was the damage located near the license plate? If not I am not sure how they would be able to provide a picture showing both.
They sent more pictures than just those 2, including ones with the license plate but never the plate and the damage together. The date/time isn't stamped on them but when you look at the picture properties, it shows the date and time.
the damage was on the underside of the bumper, right under the license plate. surely they could have sent you a picture with partial plate in it that also showed the damage.

in any case, there would not be rust on the scrapes if they were fresh.

Were the pictures of the license plate JUST the picture of the plate? when Budget tried to get me for the same type of damage, they sure did send pictures of the license plate.... but the picture was JUST the plate, perfectly centered to take up the entire picture.
 
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Oct 16, 2017
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#12
I hadn't a chance to compile my reply to Avis after receiving the pictures and then today I received an email from them saying "Your claim was reviewed by the claim board and has been determined as collectable." So I send them this...

Hello there, You still have not proven that these damages were not there prior to my rental period. The alleged damage on the passenger side front bumper, if that is even damage, as you cannot tell from the picture (I inserted the 1st picture of the bumper above), is NOT larger than a silver dollar. The damage on the underside of the front bumper clearly has rust on it (I inserted the 2nd picture above), meaning it has been there for a while and I would not have even been able to see this unless I laid on the ground, is that what you are expecting of your customers, to lay on the ground? Also, this picture could have included the license plate, how do I even know this picture is the vehicle I rented?

They replied "The board has made its determination and we cannot change that. The decision would not be made if they did not have the legal documentation to support the claim and the internal documentation to confirm it. I’m not sure why you say it is not larger than a silver dollar, the damage extends across the bumper more than a foot long, a silver dollar is 1½ inches."

I started to draft me reply... You have not proven it to me, you have only shown me a picture of old damage on the underside of a bumper. The silver dollar comment refers to the first picture below, where you see no damage from a normal viewing level. Like I said, had i laid on the ground, i would have seen the old damage, if the picture is even from the car I rented. You also haven't the vehicle was even repaired, the "final bill" provided only shows estimates. As for the "loss of use" charge, can you prove the vehicle would have been rented during the time it was supposedly being repaired?

The pictures I am referring to are in post #5 of this thread. Thanks!
 
Feb 9, 2016
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#13
You can argue details with them or you can just keep asking for documentation, the documentation we suggest.

I encourage you to stick to simply asking for proof - the proof they say they have because "the decision would not be made if they did not have the legal documentation to support the claim in the internal documentation to confirm it"

Essentially this claim is going to come down to them being able to prove it was you. They just told you that they could prove it. "Fine. Show me that documentation you speak of" " and while you are at it, send me the following documentation so I can review the history of this vehicle"

Them all for all the documents we suggest.

What you have to do is prepare for them to take you to small claims court. Usually these claims get dropped way before them but you have to be persistent in asking them, in writing, to prove you did it. You need everything in wind to be able to show that you remained engaged and willing to solve this, and you need to show a pattern of you saying "I'm happy to entertain this situation, I didn't cause the damage, but I'm willing to be open to all possibilities, let's see if we can figure out when it occurred, send me "this paperwork" and anything else you have that points the damage at me"

If you say that over and over, and they refuse to assist you, or give you the documentation they claim to have that proves it is you, then they have failed to prove their case, and you are technically off the hook.

Essentially these cases come down to, I did not damage the vehicle, prove it. And then the burden of proof is on them.
 
Nov 20, 2015
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#14
In the photos, I see the scrape marks on the underside of the white plastic bumper cover. I see white, black, chrome, and clear plastic, but no significant metal anywhere. I'd leave out the argument about the rust.

I just looked, and all 4 of my family's cars have scrapes on the underside of the bumper covers. Like you, I consider this normal wear and tear. Keep fighting.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,024
12,256
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#15
Have you moved up to the executives? You should stop arguing with these people if you haven't started reaching out to the executives one by one. Once it goes that high, that is usually when we see them back off and waive the damages.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,024
12,256
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#17
No. You forward your last email you received from the car company to the first executive.

Tell him or her that you are frustrated because the locator has not provided you with all the information you requested- which is to see the previous copies of return reports from the last 5 people that rented that car to prove the damage wasn't noted to a previous renter to prove you didn't do it.

Ask them to intervene and drop the claim.