Who Covers the Damages?
What would you do if you were to hand your keys over to a valet at a restaurant or a hotel only to find out later that they’ve damaged your car? Whether the damage is major or minor is not the point. The point is that someone else caused damage to your vehicle, and it can create a number of headaches.
Who Is Liable?
It is important to remember that the liability laws can vary from state to state. However, in most cases, the liable party is the one who was driving the vehicle at the time. In the case of someone who works as a professional valet though, it is likely to be the employer who is liable for damages. A valet’s employer is often a contractor company. They have contracts with different hotels, malls, restaurants, and other locations. However, if the valet was an employee of the establishment, then that establishment would be the one held liable.
However, getting the valet company to admit that one of their employees caused damage to the vehicle can be very difficult, and it can be a tedious affair to try to get them to pay for the damages.
What Should You Do if a Valet Damages your Vehicle?
Those who use valets, whether they use them all the time or only rarely, need to inspect their vehicle before and after using the service. This enables them to know whether the car suffered from any damage while it was in the care of the valet. If you find damage, it is important to speak with a manager of the valet company that’s onsite. Get the address and number of the company’s offices and talk about filing a claim.
It is important that you keep calm when you are talking to all of the different people from the valet company no matter how angry you might be. Being angry and confrontational will only cause more problems.
In some cases, the valet and manager may not give you the information you need in order to talk with the corporate office. In those cases, you should speak with management of the establishment you visited. For example, if it happened at a hotel, speak with the hotel manager. They will be able to give you the information you need to call and make a claim.
If the damage to the vehicle is serious, then it may be a good idea to speak with the police and file an incident report. This shows that you took action immediately, and it can be a valuable piece of evidence later. Once you gather all of the information you need, you can turn it over to your insurance company. Let them know about the incident, and let them help you handle it. The insurance company has experience in the matter, and they will be able to use their resources to determine who is liable and to make sure they pay for the damages.
You want to make sure that your car is always safe from damage that could be inflicted by a valet. Forgoing the valet is the only surefire way to do this, and that might work in some cases. However, you may visit some locations where using the valet is essential. If you get a bad feeling about the way the valet seems to be handling the vehicles, you can try to find another place to park, or ask to park the vehicle on your own in a separate lot.
For all of your insurance needs and questions, make sure you get in touch with us today. We’re here to help.