Hertz rental car damage claim by Purco

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Nov 30, 2017
I rented a car from Hertz at the Spokane airport in April 2017. I returned the car and saw no damage to the car when I returned it. I had a brief encounter with the attendant who recorded the car mileage and sent me an e-receipt. The e-receipt did not note any damage. The attendant did not inspect the car in my presence and did not bring to my attention to any damage. Days later I received a phone message from Purco stating that a claim was being set up. I called Hertz to discuss the claim but they refused to discuss the matter and said that the Spokane airport agency (Overland) was an independent entity. The initial claim packet included photocopies of pictures and it was impossible to distinguish any damage. I contacted my insurance agent who after much difficulty reached Michelle Hansen at Purco. Michelle agreed to waive the 5 day loss of use claim and the administrative fee but threatened to file a claim with the credit bureau if I did not pay the $478.50 damage claim. I had a lawyer write them a letter advising them that the claim was disputed and that it would be a violation of the Fair Debt Collections Practice Act and Fair Credit Reporting Act to report it without noting that it was a disputed claim. Following the advice in your website, the lawyer requested a copy of the fleet utilization log, the rental contracts from the five people who rented before and after, the receipt showing the cost of the repair, and clear pictures showing the damage. Purco sent electronic pictures in a pdf. The pictures show a gray car with lots of shadows that could be damaged and a blue car with no shadows that is clearly damaged. The blue car is in a different location than the gray car. Because the pictures are in a pdf file, the metadata is not accessible. Purco refuses to send time-dated pictures or the contracts of the 5 people before or after my rental. Their explanation of the different color cars is that different cameras show different colors. Because they are unwilling to provide the information I requested, I am not convinced that the car I rented was damaged during the time I rented it. Nevertheless, I offered to pay them $300. They have refused to accept my offer and refused to provide any additional information. They have advised me they intend to pursue the claim. (They have also refused to provide a complete copy of the contract, and their copy of my original paperwork has been altered. It shows a bunch of lines and circles though no lines or circles where the alleged damage occurred.)