Terry Goddard Announces Settlement with Payless Car Rental over Windshield Charges

(Phoenix, Ariz. – June 9, 2009) Attorney General Terry Goddard today announced a $139,000 settlement with PCR Venture of Phoenix, LLC, which conducts business as Payless Car Rental.  

The State’s investigation revealed that Payless charged at least 80 customers for windshield damage for which they were not responsible.  Renters took possession of vehicles, unaware that the windshields had one or more pre-existing chips.  When the renters returned the vehicles, Payless held them responsible for the damage and attempted to collect the cost of replacing the windshield from them.  

In some instances, Payless had already collected the cost of windshield replacement from the customers who were in possession of the cars when the damage occurred.  The State also found that in some instances Payless falsified repair invoices to collect payments from renters.  In addition to charging consumers for windshield replacements, Payless also charged some renters for loss of use of the vehicle, claiming that the car could not be rented when it was being repaired.  Although it took a relatively short period of time to replace a windshield, Payless charged some consumers for one or two days of loss of use.   

According to the settlement, Payless agrees to reimburse all consumers who were charged for windshield damage for which they were not responsible and to pay a civil penalty to the State of $100,000. In addition, Payless agreed to refrain from engaging in these practices as well as any other misrepresentations or deceptive acts in the future. 

Assistant Attorney General Nancy Anger handled this case.  Copies of the settlement are available on the Attorney General’s Web site, www.azag.gov

If you believe you have been a victim of fraud, please contact the Attorney General’s Office in Phoenix, at 602.542.5763, in Tucson at 520.628.6504 or outside the Phoenix and Tucson metro areas at 1.800.352.8431.  To file a complaint in person, the Attorney General’s Office has satellite offices throughout Arizona with volunteers available to help.  Locations and hours are posted on the Attorney General’s Web site.  An online complaint form is also available on the Web site.