Monthly Archives: February, 2015

Charleston Place Hotel Confirmed for May 3 – 5 Roundtable

February 24th, 2015 Posted by General Car Rental Industry, Roundtables No Comment yet

We have just confirmed space at the Charleston Place Hotel in Charleston, SC. This gorgeous hotel in Old Charleston, perennially ranked as one of the top hotels in North America by Condé Nast Traveler, is an extraordinary hotel where history and elegance come together.

Our meeting begins with a welcoming reception at 6 PM Sunday, May 3, followed by a short meeting. After a continental breakfast, we meet all day Monday, May 4 and have a group dinner Monday evening. On Tuesday we have breakfast again and a meeting lasting until noon. Spouses and other guests are welcome at the reception and group dinner.

Membership in the Roundtable is limited to owners and general managers of independent or franchised vehicle rental companies that are not in geographic competition with existing members.

Click here for more information on Roundtables.

Contact Jim Tennant to discuss your participation in a Roundtable. 707-287-1311.

Negligent Entrustment

February 20th, 2015 Posted by General Car Rental Industry, Legal Issues No Comment yet

I am considered an expert in car rental related matters and often act as an expert witness in legal cases involving the car rental industry. Accidents involving rental cars are common, but since the passage of the Graves Amendment, the rental company is usually not liable for the actions of its customers. The most common exceptions are product liability and negligent entrustment. Click here for a good explanation of the Graves Amendment. Negligent entrustment occurs when a vehicle is entrusted to an individual that should not have been allowed to have the vehicle.

How do you, as a vehicle rental owner or operator, eliminate or reduce exposure to negligent entrustment lawsuits? By being careful to do two things.

First, have well documented procedures for qualifying renters. The possession of a facially valid driver’s license is obviously one requirement, but no rental company could survive very long if that were all they required of someone trying to rent a vehicle. Possession of a major credit card in the renter’s name that can be authorized for the amount of the rental is a common requirement and many rental companies will only rent to those that have one. Other companies will rent to those with a debit card or even do “cash rentals” to those without even a debit card, but to survive they must have further qualification procedures, such as verification of employment by providing pay stubs, verification of residence by providing utility bills, etc. Whatever the procedures are, they must be reasonable, not discriminatory and designed to avoid entrusting your vehicle to irresponsible, unsafe drivers.

Second, and just as important if not more so, these procedures must be followed every time. All negligent entrustment cases that I have been involved have been situations where a company’s procedures were not followed and the vehicle ended up in the hands of an obviously unqualified driver who caused a terrible accident, resulting in serious injuries and often death.

In summary, have well documented, reasonable qualification procedures, train your staff well and do not tolerate any deviations from your procedures.

If you would like to discuss this topic in more detail, please feel free to contact me.

Jim Tennant

Car Rental Show – How to Survive Your Market’s Bottom Feeder

February 3rd, 2015 Posted by Car Rental Show, General Car Rental Industry No Comment yet

Jim_Tennent_Podium_Left-425Why do they put mirrors at elevators? What does J D Powers have to do with rate management?

At the 2013 Car Rental Show, Michael Meyer of Rate Highway and I did a seminar on rate management that was very well attended and well received. We are teaming up again at this year’s show to do a seminar entitled “How to Survive Your Market’s Bottom Feeder“. You will learn the answers to these questions and many others by attending the seminar at 3 PM on Tuesday, April 13. See you there.

Go to the 2015 Car Rental Show web site.