Enterprise Car Rental - Enterprise Rent-a-Car Damage Scam

Aug 18, 2011
review #256298

Apparently, I am only one of many who have been targeted by this scam, and something needs to be done about it. Here are the details:

On June 14, 2011, I had an appointment for my car to be serviced at Metro Volkswagen in Irving, Texas. They had promised a loaner vehicle, but due to a shortage of cars because of recent hailstorms, they arranged instead a rental vehicle from Enterprise Rent-a-Car.

At the Enterprise office (3910 W. Airport Freeway, Irving, Texas), the Enterprise counter agent, Joe, told me the only vehicle they had available for me was a pickup truck. They brought the truck around and Joe apologized for not having anything better but they were also short on inventory because of the recent hail activity in the area. In fact, this particular truck was from Houston, he said, and had quite a few hail dings, too.

We inspected the vehicle together and I noticed several hail dings all over the truck; Joe said"”at least twice"”that they weren't concerned about any dents that were smaller than the end of your thumb, and not to worry about the hail dings. He had been writing on a clipboard all this time, so I assumed he was noting the prior damage (but now looking at the contract, I suppose I assumed wrong as nothing is noted).

Around 5:00 p.m., I called Metro Volkswagen to check the status of my own vehicle and was told they would have to keep it overnight as they had not had a chance to look at it yet. Metro VW was sure I would be okay with that since they had arranged for me to have a vehicle to drive while mine was in the shop.

Since I was going out of town the next day with plans to be gone a week, I suggested that it was wasteful for me to keep a rental car parked in my garage for a week (since Metro VW was paying the bill), and asked if I could drive it to the airport the next morning and turn it in. My service writer agreed with the plan.

I dutifully turned the truck in at the DFW Airport early in the morning on June 15th. The woman who checked in the truck remarked on the hail ding on the hood; I said the guy who rented me the truck the day before said not to worry about that. She did a quick walk-around, and handed me back the contract, having made no notations of any damages.

When I returned from vacation, there was a letter from Enterprise which stated "our Damage Recovery Unit has received notification of damage or loss to the vehicle you rented." I called the phone number listed on the morning of June 23rd and spoke to Jenna. I asked what sort of damage was done, and she told me the front bumper was loose.

I told Jenna that I had only driven the truck approximately 100 miles in the 22 hours it was in my care, and that for the most part, it was parked in my garage. There was no way I had damaged the front bumper of the truck, I told her, and she said she would refer it to the Damage Recovery Unit for investigation.

I contacted my insurance company to alert them to this potential bogus claim by Enterprise Rent-a-Car, and asked them to contact me if Enterprise tried to file a claim against my policy.

On Friday, August 12th, I received a second letter from Enterprise stating that "Our review indicates that you are responsible for the damages to our vehicle. Enclosed please find documentation to support our claim." Included with the letter was an invoice in the amount of $1,012.28 for damages, administrative fees, loss of use and diminishment of value. They sent a form requesting either my insurance information or my credit card information for payment.

Also included with the letter was a copy of the estimate which I have carefully reviewed. I found it curious that on June 23rd, Jenna had told me the front bumper was loose, but the estimate is for replacing the hood and repairing the grille.

I also noticed another serious discrepancy . . . the VIN on my contract for the truck I drove is KMHCN4AC0BU615718 but the VIN listed on the estimate for the damaged truck is 1D7CE3GK2AS179421.

Contemplating what my next step should be, I went to the Internet and Googled "Enterprise rental car damage scam." I was not surprised to find pages and pages of complaints from people from all over the United States with stories similar to mine.

In fact, my husband has been victimized by this same scam in the past. In 2004 or thereabouts, another driver hit his company vehicle so their insurance company was responsible for paying for a rental vehicle for him while his SUV was being repaired. He requires a vehicle the size of a SUV for his work but the other driver's insurance company (Progressive) reneged on paying the cost for an SUV and only paid Enterprise Rent-a-Car for the cost of a smaller vehicle. Enterprise was persistent in billing us for the difference (which we never paid), and has subsequently has placed my husband's name on a "Do Not Rent" list.

As I stated in my opening paragraph, this scandalous practice by Enterprise Rent-a-Car is a shakedown of innocent people that comes very close, in my opinion, to insurance fraud. I'm sure Enterprise collects on several of these bogus claims because it is less expensive and certainly less time consuming to simply pay (or turn it over to the insurance company and let them pay) and move on. In the business, it's called a "nuisance claim." But it's fraudulent practices like this that drive up the cost of insurance for all of us and I think it is our duty as consumers to take a stand and do what we can to stop questionable practices such as this.

I am willing to become part of a class action suit and/or do whatever is needed to fix this problem.

I have no intention of paying for damages ($1,012) that I did not cause. I have sent a copy of the above letter to the Texas State Attorney General, the Texas Department of Insurance Consumer Protection Division, the Federal Trade Commission, the Better Business Bureaus in Fort Worth and Dallas, my insurance company (AMICA), my three major credit card companies (Capital One, CitiCard and American Express), the consumer advocates at all four major network television stations in my metro area (CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox) plus the two major newspapers (Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star-Telegram) and the service manager at Metro Volkswagen since they were responsible for paying for the rental car.

This fraudulent activity on the part of businesses has GOT to stop. PLEASE contact me if there is some chance I can help end this practice. We as consumers must learn to stand up on our hind legs and FIGHT BACK. In the infamous words of Howard Beale ("Network") . . . "I'm as mad as *** and I'm not going to take this anymore!"

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Brandon

May 15 Pine Plains, New York

My mother rented a car from enterprise at the JFK airport in NYC and returned the vehicle to the Poughkeepsie, NY Enterprise. When my mother dropped the car off at the Poughkeepsie Enterprise, three employees proceeded to scan the car from end to end. These employees then tried to scam my mother by claiming that there was damage to the car and she will be held liable. At that time, the employees were stating that there was a "half dollar" sized dent on the lower part of the drivers side back passenger door (which in reality looked like the contour of the door with no clear damage). They then told my mother that a damage claim would be sent in the mail. My mother then proceeded to take pictures of the vehicle from all angles. Days later, an Enterprise representative called my mother and began to discuss the claim. This Poughkeepsie Enterprise was claiming that there was now a "basketball sized dent in the car" and that my mother had "refused to sign a damage claim"(Remember they said that they'd send it in the mail?) My mother then told the representative that this is a lie and sent them the pictures to prove it. This outstanding representative that works in the JFK rental place then stated that he saw no damage and the claim will be dropped. Had it not been for my mother taking pictures of the car, she would have been held responsible for the so called "damages" to the car costing her hundreds of dollars. LET ME REMIND YOU THAT THIS IS A TOTALLY FALSE CLAIM AND WE CAUGHT... Show more

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Ellen

May 15 Arlington, Texas

Good for you, Brandon. I agree it is very important to take pictures of the vehicle when you pick it up as well as when you return it. Thanks to you and your mother for standing up for yourselves and not allowing Enterprise to bully you into paying for imaginary damage.

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Jessica B

Feb 25 Washington, District Of Columbia

I agree and enterprise had put me in a similar situation like this I payed because I didn't want this to go on my credit but the whole time I was saying it was a set up never know that they done this to other people

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Jules

Dec 20, 2013

Time for a class action lawsuit against all of the major car rental companies for passing the bills for acts of God on to their consumers, period. I am not responsible for hail damage that happens less than 10 miles from your own damned uncovered parking lot for sure! They've only been getting away with it since 2006. Time to beat them back for this before they get even bolder, because trust me, they will.

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Bigape

Jul 30, 2013 Wirral, England

I was stung by Enterprise in the UK at Birkenhead, Merseyside. The SUV was provided as a hire car whilst my SUV was being repaired they got me to pay for the additional insurance and surprise surprise found a chip on the windscreen below the wipers. You would have had to know about before to have found it and the rep went straight to it when I returned the vehicle. I can't believe insurance companies still use this 'company', my advice to anyone looking to hire a car DO NOT USE ENTERPRISE

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alpha

Jul 17, 2013 Miami, Florida

The same thins happened to us...agent said the same thing about smaller then a thumb scratches...then billed us for $300.00...willing to join in class action law suit

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frustration

Jul 24, 2013 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Can anyone help me out?

I am going to copy and paste what I told the enterprise

I am a 24years old, a student studying in philadelphia.

I rented a car from enterprise back in december 2012 with my canadian driver license. On the day of rental, they asked me whether I have a personal car insurance. I told them I don't and I would need a FULL coverage for my car from enterprise because I will be driving a car to washington D.C(for a seminar that I need to attend). He suggested me to get a full damage waiver and also suggestsed me to purchase the gas from enterprise because then I won't need to worry about filling up the gas after the trip. He also gave me a free upgrade to a compact car. This was my first time renting a car from enterprise and I wasn't familiar with many procedures. So I figured it would be a best bet to follow whichever recommendations suggested by the enterprise agent.

So after all the taxes and everything, I ended up paying $158 dollars. I don't know from enterprises aspect but from my part, one fifty eight dollars was a big commitment especially for a day rental.

Here is my story. The day when I returned the car, I found out some scratches on the right side of the car. I reported the scratches and the enterprise guy said I will be covered since I bought their full insurance. He asked me a few questions about the scratches and I told him I probably got them in washington d.c
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Enterprise Blows

Apr 24, 2013

On March 23 - 26,I rented a car out of Galveston, Tx that had previous damage. It was all noted in the contract during our walkaround. The car was given to me with the fuel light on so my fuel was waived.
I returned the car to Houston Intercontinental to an agent, who completed the rental by giving me my receipt from my credit card. About 3 days later I get a call from Enterprise saying I have damage on the vehicle and what happened.

So I told them it was previous damage. I had to fax them a copy of the contract, since they didn't take their copy.
I followup with them to find out the status, they tell me that everything is OK and case is closed since it's clearly not my fault.

Two weeks later I get a call from Enterprise Damage recovery unit. They ask to get my address because they don't have any information about me. I tell them my whole story again and tell them it was all previous damage. I tell them whom I spoke to and that he told me everything was fine and had a copy of the contract. They will investigate she says. I told them to look up previous vehicle history.

I called again a week after to get an update. They are still investigating. I won't let them scam me into paying for damage I didn't do and it's listed in the contract. I don't see how they can do this. I plan to report these guys to the BBB and the Texas State Attorney General.

This is the last time I rent from Enterprise.
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ellentimberlake

Apr 24, 2013 Fort Worth, Texas

Good job documenting every time you have a conversation with Enterprise. And good idea about sending the details to the Texas State Attorney General. One case alone will not prompt an investigation but a string of similar occurrences will get their attention and maybe something will eventually be done about the unfair practices of the Enterprise DRU.

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ScammedByEnterprise

Jan 23, 2013 Valencia, California

Yup, similar thing happended to me also. Never will rent with them again. Enterprise did drop the claim only after many days pleading with them and giving them the real T.

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magiccortez

Jan 28, 2013 Dallas, Texas

On Jan 7 2013 I rented a car from Enterprise at DFW. The rep from Enterprise really didnt look over the car. I, however made note of certain marks and scrathes on the car and commented the same to the Enterprise employee. After driving from Dallas to Florida then back to Dallas, the car was returned to Enterprise in the same condition as it was when I picked it up. January 25th- I received a notice from Enterprise that there was damage to the car- scratches on rear bumper. Pictures don't lie...I took pictures before I left and when I returned.
(If People Want take a stand i am right with you 3016163851)

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magiccortez

Jan 28, 2013 Dallas, Texas

On Jan 7 2013 I rented a car from Enterprise at DFW. The rep from Enterprise really didnt look over the car. I, however made note of certain marks and scrathes on the car and commented the same to the Enterprise employee. After driving from Dallas to Florida then back to Dallas, the car was returned to Enterprise in the same condition as it was when I picked it up. January 25th- I received a notice from Enterprise that there was damage to the car- scratches on rear bumper. Pictures don't lie...I took pictures before I left and when I returned.

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drbenhamu

Jan 22, 2013

Still happening
Insurance fraud, especially the hail damage scheme
North New Jersey
Count me in.

1 0 Reply
Bernadette

Jan 14, 2013 Fort Worth, Texas

Below is the lettert I sent to enterprise car rental, they have since informed me that I did indeed not only damage the vehicle and have it repaired "poorly" but that I also have now demanged the bumper.. They sent me a random pic of a bumper laying on the ground unattached to the vehicle saying I had also demanged that too which is NOT the bumper that was on the car.. They are saying I owe over 1400.00 in damage it is so clearly a scam!! But what do you do?

To Whom it may concern:

I write this correspondence with concern regarding the integrity, honesty and business ethics I encountered with your company. On November 30, 2012 at approximately 0740, I took my 2005 Mustang to Caliber Collision located at 7300 Rosewood Avenue, Fort Worth, TX. 76116 for repairs sustained from a collision that occurred on November 27, 2012. After dropping my vehicle off I rented from your company a 2013 silver Hyundai Sonata, TX License DX2W231. This vehicle was dirty when I picked it up and I did not notice any damage to the vehicle at that time. I drove this vehicle until the morning of December 19, 2012.

When Caliber Collision completed the repairs to my car I returned the Hyundai to your company located at Caliber Collision. However prior to returning this vehicle i had it washed and the gas tank filled. Your agent went out to inspect this vehicle and immediately went to the left front bumper as if she knew or had prior knowledge of the vehicle
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Richard Isolde

Jan 12, 2013 Clark, New Jersey

I am an attorney and I am a victim of this scam in New Jersey. If you have been ripped off, contact me at rjisolde@gmail.com

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Medha A

Jan 02, 2013 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

I am ready to be part of class action lawsuit as well because I was ripped off by Enterprise similarly 4 months ago, under the pretex of some "barely visible" dent on the rooftop! And same way they charged me $100 administrative fee.

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Melissa Rainey

Nov 21, 2012

I got a crack in my windshield, paid what the counter woman told me to and now I got a letter in the mail with a different total and a $50 administrative fee!!! For what, doing your job! The difference in my bill was $28 and the admin fee is almost double what I owe. I hope their is a class action lawsuit

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Julie in NY -- FURIOUS with En

Nov 20, 2012

This just happened to me!
I have rented from Enterprise many times in NY, DC and a couple other places without mishap. I rented a car in Chicago for a week. The first car they tried to give me had been side swiped. I asked for another car. They got another car ready for me--all very friendly and polite. They also set it up for me to return the car to another location in Chicago closer to my final destination. We walked around the car. I pointed out a modest scratch on the front bumper and was told -- as I always am when doing this walk around -- that scuffs and scratches on bumpers do not matter and in any case the scratch was smaller than their damage reporting requires. I asked the guy, the branch manager in fact, to make a note of it anyway--as I always do. Usually they do without comment but THIS guy said "if I do that, I will get written up." So I relented. When I returned the car to the other location the employee who signed the car back in said there was an 8 inch scratch on the front bumper. !!! AND, he said, damage on REAR bumpers does not count! I told him what the other branch guy (manager) had said. He looked in his computer and said this scratch was not on the "condition of car" (or something) report. (BECAUSE THE OTHER GUY DID NOT NOTE IT when I asked him to!) Smells funny, eh?
I called the original branch manager (will supply names, depending on how this comes out) who said "the guy who checked us in is new and should not have done any of that."
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Conscious Consumer

Nov 10, 2012

You guys a ridiculous. It's your responsibility as as an adult and a consumer to thoroughly read any legally binding contract before signing. If you agreed to take the vehicle w/no damage being marked on the contract and damage is found upon return then own up to it. No one is saying you did it, but your contract clearly states that you are responsible for any change or condition of the vehicle once possession changes hands and that you are still under contract until the vehicle is checked in by an Enterprise employee. If you take a truck that you didn't want because it's the last one on the lot, point out damage and don't insist on documenting it on the contract, etc it's your own fault. There are over a million vehicles in the Enterprise fleet and if a vehicle is not available at one branch it can be sought out at another. The big problem here is that nobody ever reads the contract therefore they don't know what they are or aren't agreeing to or what violates any coverage you may have purchased. When you rent a car you are borrowing something that is not your, agree to its condition at the time of receipt, and are expected to return it the same way it was given to you. It's nobody fault f your too busy to fulfill your obligations or responsibilities as a consumer and don't demand the representative that's assisting you to fulfill the obligations and commitments as a vendor or employee. The problem with most consumers is they feel that they are always right and want what... Show more

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