Hertz charged a reader full price for a car rental even though he redeemed points. A man spent 5 years in prison because Hertz wouldn’t produce the receipt that proved his innocence. But perhaps the most systematic problem at Hertz is sending customers to prison for stealing cars that they actually returned.
From reviewing cases reported on in media, and the cases I’ve heard about from readers, it appears that there’s an issue when customers change vehicles or extend rentals but the changes don’t get reflected properly in Hertz’s systems.
One customer was held in jail for 40 days over a rental that occurred eight years earlier Another reported renting a car that Hertz had already reported stolen. It clearly wasn’t stolen because they had it in their possession and rented it.
Now an attorney representing people who rented from Hertz and wound up in jail for it is objecting to Hertz’s bankruptcy exit, saying they should have to solve these systemic issues prior to emerging from court supervision.
“What we have seen is that all of these police reports are unverified, all of them have false information including back dating rental extensions and falsifying payment information.”
Hertz has a scheduled hearing this week as part of the bankruptcy case, but Malofiy’s objections include that Hertz allegedly deletes relevant records to cover false police reports and never pursues or withdraws prosecution, leaving plaintiffs in limbo.
“Hertz has broken standard operating procedures, they have broken computer systems and they also don’t want to spend the time to verify police reports,” he added. “People are going to jail wrongfully and it’s so bad that the head doesn’t really know what the tail is doing . But it costs too much to fix their problems so what Hertz is doing – they’re basically cutting costs to increase profits at the expense of human life.”
The rental car company for its part says none of this is true.
Hertz strongly disputes the claims and continues to vigorously defend against them. Overall the claims in the lawsuits that have been previously brought by this group of attorneys have involved baseless accusations and wild exaggerations. The vast majority of the allegations involve renters whose temporary detainment or arrests resulted from their failure to return rented vehicles for weeks or months past their due date, in violation of the rental agreement and despite our repeated attempts to communicate with them about the status of the vehicle.”
Alerting the authorities is always a last resort but sometimes necessary after all options have been exhausted to retrieve a vehicle from a customer who has refused to return it. Alerting the authorities typically only happens at the end of an extensive, multi-week process that includes phone calls, texts, emails, and certified letters asking the customer to return the vehicle.
Despite Hertz’s protestations, this position wasn’t found credible in a 2017 jury trial.
Hertz was once the rental company for business travelers. In this extended montage from Up in the Air when George Clooney is grounded in Omaha he wants to buy a Chrysler Sebring from Hertz. The part they didn’t show was Clooney getting arrested when Hertz failed to file paperwork on the sale.