Frequently Asked Questions for consumers with vehicles on rent or lease during the COVID-19 pandemic
Frequently Asked Questions Rental
Q: I have booked to rent a vehicle from one of your members. Will I still be able to rent the vehicle during the Covid-19 pandemic?
A: You should contact the rental company directly in the first instance. While Vehicle Rental remains on the government list of exceptions to business closures, members are being advised to only rent where the purpose of the rental is essential to keep customers and their staff safe.
A: Where any vehicles are returned, you should practice social distancing and our members will facilitate a contactless drop off to accommodate this.
A: You should get in contact with the rental company and discuss options it could be that they are able to come and collect the vehicle or come to arrangement with the rental company on returning the vehicle. Make sure you come to an arrangement about paying for the vehicle during this time.
A: You should discuss this with the rental company directly. While the cancellation policy agreed to in your booking terms and conditions will still apply, BVRLA members may have alternative policies in place including the potential to postpone the booking to a future date.
Frequently Asked Questions Leasing
Q: My agreement on my leased vehicle has come to an end and I am due to return the vehicle. Will they still collect my vehicle?
A: It is best to discuss this directly with your finance company. Your finance company may ask that you keep the vehicle until it is safe for collection agents to collect the vehicle again, once travel restrictions are lifted by the government.
Q: The leasing company have advised they are coming to collect/deliver my vehicle, how will this be done safely?
A: The leasing company should be in touch prior to the collection or delivery to advise you of the process, this may include:
- What you should do with the keys or documentation (ideally these should be placed in an envelope)
- Alternatives to signing anything, this may include recording your verbal consent to the vehicle being removed and or acknowledging any damage
- Advice on sanitising surfaces in the vehicle
Q: If I am asked to keep hold of my vehicle until it is safe for the vehicle to be collected, will I continue to be charged?
A: Your finance company will be able to clarify how the extension to the agreement will work. It is best to take pictures of the condition of the vehicle and the mileage of the vehicle once the agreement has ended and to cease use of the vehicle unless agreed otherwise with your finance company.
Q: I am in financial difficult due to income shock as a result of Covid-19. Can my finance company support me with my monthly payments?
A: You should contact your finance company directly and at the earliest opportunity if you are experiencing or anticipating difficulty in paying your monthly payments as per your agreement.
The FCA has introduced a package of measures for consumers having difficulties paying their motor finance, including personal contract hire products.
If customers are experiencing temporary financial difficulties due to coronavirus, the FCA expects firms to:
- offer a 3-month payment freeze or another alternative which is in the best interests of the customer
- not take steps to end the agreement or repossess the vehicle
We would advise going to the finance companies website in the first instance to see what their procedures are as many of them are operating with a reduction in call centre staff and therefore may take long to answer calls.
If you are facing financial difficulty because of Covid-19, contact your insurer to discuss the best way forward.
Q: I’ve extended my lease for a short time as my new vehicle can’t be delivered do I have to buy another 12 months of insurance?
Insurance policies are normally for a duration of 12 months. If you have extended your lease and need temporary cover, speak to your insurer to see if they can offer a short-term product or look for an insurance provider who can provide temporary cover.
Q: I was due to take delivery of a new leased vehicle at the end of March/April and my financial situation has changed due to COVID-19. Can I cancel the vehicle?
A: You should get in touch with the funder or broker who you placed the vehicle order with as soon as possible to discuss your options. It will depend on where you are in the contract process as to whether you can cancel or defer your new vehicle lease until your financial situation improves. Email communication is probably best at this time as some brokers and funders are operating with reduced staff levels.