Car accidents or bumps can happen at any time and a lease car is no different. We've created this guide for you so that you can feel prepared for any surprise accidents that may happen in the future; avoiding any lease car damage charges that may creep up.
Firstly, don’t panic and keep calm. No one wants to get into an accident with their newly leased car, whether it involves another car or a stationary object. However, it does happen to the best of us. We created this guide so that you can feel a little more prepared if your lease car ever gets damaged.
When it comes to what you should be doing immediately after it happens, check out our news story about what to do after a car accident. Now, you’re left with a damaged lease car, what happens next?
After the incident, you’ll be left with a car that has some damage. You will need to get it repaired as quickly as possible. To begin with, make sure to read through your finance contract to identify any criteria that you will need to stick to like using a main dealer for the repairs or if you can use a dealer of your choice.
We always recommend using a main dealer with genuine parts so that you can feel assured your car is getting the best parts and the best service.
Your next call should be towards your insurance company, informing them of the accident. You don’t have to submit a claim with them though if you decide to pay for the repairs yourself (as you may want to keep your no-claims bonus intact) but you still need to tell them you have been in an accident regardless.
You should then get in touch with your leasing funder and inform them of what has happened. They may be able to assist you in getting you back on the road if necessary.
You will be penalised for any damage that does not fall under the BVRLA’s Fair Wear and Tear guidelines at the end of the lease. Majority of the time it is more cost-effective to get the car repaired straight away and pay for it to be fixed yourself.
If your lease car is damaged and it wasn’t your fault, you are still responsible for its condition. You may be able to claim on their insurance (either under your insurance policy or directly from the other party involved) but this still must be sorted before the leased vehicle is returned.
If the vehicle is damaged to the point of it being written off by the insurance provider, there will be a difference remaining between what your insurance company will pay out for the vehicle and what you still owe on the car to the finance company. If this is the case, you will have to take accountability for this shortfall and pay it back.
Most finance companies follow the BVRLA Fair Wear and Tear guidelines when it comes to the return of a lease vehicle. These guidelines identify what is considered reasonable damage for day-to-day use over the length of the contract. If your car is returned and falls outside of these guidelines, you will be expected to pay for the damages and repair of the vehicle.
We recommend taking pictures of the car before you return it so that you have evidence of the car's condition in case you feel that you will be charged more than what is fair for any damage costs.
If you have any questions about lease car damages and lease car damage charges, you can get in contact with the team, and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have. You can give us a call at 0345 350 3776, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or send us a message on our live chat service.