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Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

If your rental car company reported your rental as stolen and you were falsely accused of stealing a rental car, you have legal rights and can recover compensation for stolen rental car claims.  If your rental car was reported as stolen at the time you rented it and you were pulled over or arrested, or you were accused of stealing your rental car during or after the rental, you may be able to recover significant compensation whether you were arrested or not.

Whitney, LLP’s stolen rental car claim lawyers help sue rental car companies and fight back for victims and their families in claims involving a rental car reported as stolen.

Whitney, LLP has recovered significant compensation for our clients in claims involving stolen rental cars and representing victims who were falsely accused of stealing a rental car.  We represent clients throughout Maryland and may be able to refer you to experienced lawyers in other states if your claim occurred outside of Maryland. 

We offer Free Case Evaluations to victims who were falsely accused of stealing a rental car. 

Call Whitney, LLP at 410 583 8000, or use our Quick Contact Form, to discuss your potential case.

When necessary, we refer our clients to experienced Maryland criminal defense attorneys who will make our client a top priority and defend them against criminal charges when our clients are arrested and charged with theft of a rental car. 

Can You Sue a Rental Company if They Report Your Car as Stolen - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Daniel Whitney, Jr. of Whitney, LLP represents clients who are falsely accused of stealing rental cars.

Can You Sue a Rental Company if They Report Your Car as Stolen?

Yes, 100%, you can sue a rental car company if they report your car as stolen and you were falsely accused of stealing a rental car.  This Whitney, LLP blog post provides information to answer the question, “can you sue a rental car company if they report your car as stolen.”

Finding an experienced lawyer to sue a rental car company is a good place to start.  The legal process can be complicated, and having an experienced attorney who knows the law and how to proceed with your case, step by step, can make the difference between recovering maximum compensation and settling a claim for far less than it is worth. 

 There are multiple types of claims that arise out of claims involving stolen rental cars. 

The common thread in stolen rental car claims is that the rental car company either provided a car for a rental car reported as stolen, or, the rental car company claimed that their customer stole the rental car, either during or after the rental, without a legitimate basis for doing so.

You may be able to recover compensation for stolen rental car claims if you were:

  1. Accused of theft;
  2. Had a police interaction;
  3. Pulled over by the police and released;
  4. Detained by police; or
  5. Arrested as the result of rental car company negligence.
Copy of real estate agent dishonest lawsuit 770 x 525 px - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

A rental car company’s negligence is no excuse for placing their customer in a stolen car. Rental car companies that downplay the harm caused to their customers are often repeat offenders and try to act as if it is not a big deal. But it is.

Understanding Negligent Rental Car Companies and Stolen Rental Car Claims 

Providing rental cars that are currently reported as stolen to their customers and falsely accusing customers of stealing rental cars are unfortunate but common practices by negligent rental car companies.  

With huge inventories, constant rentals and returns, time pressure and a difficult time retaining experienced employees, rental car companies often fail to follow proper procedures when it comes to handling rental cars reported as stolen, returned late, or not returned due to no fault of the customer. 

Negligent rental car companies would rather quickly rent their car than take the time to follow procedures and report back to law enforcement once they recover a car previously reported as stolen.  

Similarly, when a rental car is not returned on time, or there is a dispute with a customer over a car being returned or not, negligent rental car companies would rather report the car as stolen than take the time to contact the customer and figure out what is actually happening with the rental car.

Negligent rental car companies do not manage their inventory correctly and do not care about their customers’ wellbeing.   Instead, their priority is renting more cars and using any means necessary to recover their cars, including making police reports based on false, incomplete and inaccurate information.

Fortunately, victims of negligent rental car companies have more rights than they realize, and can fight back and recover significant compensation.  Whitney’s LLP’s stolen rental car lawyers have experience fighting back against these illegal practices and recovering significant compensation. 

Falsely Accused of Rental Car Theft 3 Types of Claims - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Three Types of Stolen Rental Car Claims 

There are three main types of claims involving stolen cars.  If your concern is that “the rental company reported my rental as stolen” it is likely you are dealing with one of the following situations:

Providing the customer with a rental car that is currently reported as stolen.

In this situation, the rental car was previously reported as stolen, but was then recovered and put back into inventory, but the rental company did not report to law enforcement that their rental car was recovered and is no longer stolen.  

In this situation, the customer is provided with a rental car that is currently reported as stolen, and the customer and passengers are pulled over, stopped and detained by police, and sometimes arrested.

Rental car company reports the rental car as stolen while the customer still has the car. 

Here, the rental car is reported stolen after the customer rents the car.  This is usually due to one of two situations.

First, the customer keeps the rental car longer than originally expected, and the rental car company reports it as stolen instead of communicating with the customer.

Second, the rental car company mistakenly reports the rental car as stolen due to mismanaging its inventory.

In either situation, if the customer did not intent to steal the car, and if the rental car company causes criminal charges to be filed without a reasonable basis to do so, the rental car company should not have filed criminal charges and can be held responsible. 

Arrested after returning the rental car

This scenario occurs more often that most people realize.  A rental car customer is arrested either weeks, months or even years after returning the rental car.  This can occur because the rental car did not get returned on time, whether due to the customer not returning it, the car getting in an accident, the car being stolen, or other rental car company negligence.  

In this situation, the customer is arrested, often out of the blue, when pulled over for a traffic violation or during another police encounter, and the police find a warrant out for theft charges.  The customer is then arrested and may be imprisoned for an extended period of time until they are able to contact an attorney and get the situation involved.  This is a nightmare scenario that should never occur, but does occur, due to rental car company negligence.

In any of these situations, Whitney, LLP may be able to undertake representation and provide a lawyer to sue a rental car company and fight back.

amko auto judgment 1024x536 - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Compensation for Stolen Rental Car Claims

Significant compensation for stolen rental car claims can be recovered for victims of false stolen rental car claims.  Being stopped, accused, detained or arrested by the police, all due to a rental car company’s negligence or false claims,  can allow you to recover damages.

Customers who are detained and/or arrested lose their freedom, are unable to communicate with their family, incur the expense of a criminal defense attorney and often miss work and other important events.  

In some cases, their personal cars are towed and impounded, causing towing fees and other transportation related expenses to be incurred that can be recovered as damages due to rental car company negligence.  

Victims of stolen rental car claims have many legal rights and can fight back.  Whitney, LLP’s stolen rental car attorneys know how to hold negligent rental car companies responsible for their actions and recover compensation for stolen rental car claims.

rental car company reported my car as stolen 1 - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Rental Car Company Reported My Rental As Stolen

Stolen rental car claims and consumers being falsely accused of stealing a rental car are a widespread problem that most consumers only find out about once it happens to them.

The following are just a brief list of some of the many article and inquiries about stolen rental car claims and false accusations:

The internet is also full of consumers trying to make sense of a variety of stolen rental car claims and accusations by rental car ccompanies, including:

  • A Reddit topic of “Returned rental car only to have company say it was stolen.”
  • A Quora inquiry and response to: “If a rental company like Hertz decides to call the police to arrest you for renting their vehicle, what can you do to protect yourself from going to jail?”
  • A Quora inquiry and response as to “Can a rental car company call a car in stolen that’s been rented from them?”;
  • A Quora inquiry as to “If you were falsely accused of stealing a rental car, would you sue the car rental company or file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau?” (The Answer is to get a lawyer sue the rental car company – the BBB does not take legal action on the consumer’s behalf.

Based on multiple calls received by Whitney, LLP from victims saying the rental car company reported my rental as stolen, along with the information and news article referenced above, it is clear the car rental industry is failing at protecting their customers from false stolen rental car claims. 

Fortunately, rental car companies’ failures are not the final word.  Consumers victimized by these practices have far more legal rights than they often realize.

criminal defense lawyer for stolen rental car - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Help Finding a Criminal Defense Attorney for Stolen Rental Car Claims

If necessary, Whitney, LLP’s stolen rental car claim lawyers refer our clients an experienced criminal defense attorney to fight back against criminal charges.  We personally know experienced criminal defense attorneys across Maryland who will make our clients’ case a priority to ensure their rights and freedom is promptly protected.  

Being charged with theft of a rental car is a serious matter that must be quickly addressed.  Quickly hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows how to approach the prosecution in advance of trial and provide evidence of in your favor may allow the charges to be dismissed without the need for additional time, expense and aggravation.

The cost of hiring an experienced criminal defense lawyer to defend against false theft charge can be recovered as part of compensation for stolen rental car claims.

lawyer to sue rental car company - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Unwanted Law Enforcement Interaction from Rental Car Reported as Stolen

Even when you have done nothing wrong and have nothing to hide, being pulled over, stopped and questioned by the police is upsetting and can be traumatic.  

If the victim of rental car company negligence is actually arrested, the emotional distress compounds.  There is no question that being accused and arrested for stealing a car, even though the car was rented and paid for, is traumatic.

Unnecessary law enforcement action as the result of rental car company negligence can cause emotional distress allowing the victim to recover compensation, whether or not an arrest occurs. Compensation for stolen rental car claims can be recovered based on unnecessary law enforcement interactions, whether an arrest occurred or not. 

Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Whitney, LLP Helps Family Sue Enterprise for Renting a Stolen Rental Car

In a recent 2024 claim, Whitney, LLP’s stolen rental car attorneys filed a lawsuit against Enterprise after they rented our client and his family an SUV that Enterprise previously reported as stolen.  Although Enterprise recovered the stolen vehicle, they did not follow their own procedures and failed to report the recovery back to law enforcement so the vehicle would be removed from the stolen car database. 

Instead, Enterprise just put the vehicle back into their inventory and rented it out to the next customer.  In this case, our clients, a  family who had flown into BWI from out-of-state, rented the SUV from Enterprise and were looking forward to a road trip including sightseeing in Maryland and through other states.

After renting the SUV, our clients were pulled over while driving on I-95 in Maryland due to a police officer noticing that their license plate was reported as stolen.  After following our clients for about 20 minutes, which our clients realized and became nervous about, they were pulled over.  

After about 45 minutes, the police realized that Enterprise was at fault and that our clients had not stolen the car.  Our clients suffered significant emotional distress from the unnecessary law enforcement encounter resulting from Enterprise’s failures, and brought claims against Enterprise including negligence and violation of Maryland’s Consumer Protection Act. 

Our clients found Whitney, LLP after searching for a “lawyer to sue rental car company” in Maryland.  Shortly after being hired, we filed the lawsuit against Enterprise.

daniel whitney jr daniel whitney sr  - Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car? Legal Rights.

Daniel W. Whitney, Jr. and Daniel W. Whitney, Sr. of Whitney, LLP

Lawyer to Sue Rental Car Company After Falsely Accused of Stealing a Rental Car – Whitney, LLP

If you were a victim of rental car negligence involving stolen rental car claims and were falsely accused, whether you were accused, detained or arrested, you have legal rights and can fight back. Whitney, LLP can help.  

Contact Whitney, LLP to get a lawyer to sue a rental car company, fix the harm that was done, and recover compensation.

Call Whitney, LLP at 410 583 8000, or use our Quick Contact Form, to discuss your potential case.

We offer Free Case Evaluations to victims who were falsely accused of stealing a rental car. 

Whitney, LLP represents clients across Maryland, including in Baltimore, Columbia, Germantown, Silver Spring, Waldorf, Upper Marlboro, Glen Burnie, Ellicott City, Frederick, Dundalk, Rockville and Ocean City.  If you have a stolen rental claim in another state, we may be able to refer you to another lawyer who handles those matters in your state.

Of course, all cases are different, and past results do not guarantee future results.

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