Earlier this week, Hertz was in court before a judge in the ongoing bankruptcy case. Dozens of former customers told the court Hertz had reported vehicles stolen after clients rented the cars under normal conditions. Hertz responded to the accusations in court and said such situations were “very rare,” but more than 150 customers have come forward.
Car rental company Hertz is accused of having customers arrested and jailed
According to CBS News, Hertz “insists virtually all of the claims are “meritless” and says they should not be allowed to proceed for various technical reasons.” James Tolen was one of the customers that experienced such an inconvenience. Tolen says he was stopped back in 2020 after Hertz reported the vehicle stolen. He was working on a project at the time was traveling home in a rented truck.
Tolen said his girlfriend, Krystal Carter, was also in the car. Around 10 PM, the police pulled Tolen over and told him to get out of the vehicle via the loudspeaker. The officer told him to lift his shirt and walk backward. “As I turn around, I see both officers train the guns on me,” Tolen told CBS’S, Anna Werner. He said he was terrified and thought he might not make it home after the interaction.
There are 156 similar claims from Hertz customers
The officers handcuffed Tolen and informed him that Hertz had reported the car stolen. The receipt and rental agreement were in the glove box at the time, which corroborated his story. After the officers reviewed the document and confirmed he did not steal the car, the officer called Hertz to instruct the company to get a better system to track such information. The truck Tolen and his girlfriend happened to be driving in was reported stolen more than three months before the incident.
This story is only two of 156 other Hertz customers around the country who have similar claims. Hertz is still going through bankruptcy court, which has all of these pending claims on hold. A spokesperson declined to talk to CBS News, stating that the company “cares deeply about our customers.”
Hertz also fired back at the customers, noting that most of the cars reported stolen were “many weeks or even months overdue.” The statement went on to say there was no communication from the renters, and in the case that the vehicles were reported stolen, the situations are “very rare.”
That isn’t the only type of story, either
John Ayoub is another Hertz customer with a similar story. He says he rented a truck from Hertz back in 2019 and rented it under the terms of a long-term rental. The company instructed him to call each week to extend the rental, which he did. “I would call. I would extend. They would charge it. I would see it. And they would say, ‘You’re good to go till next Monday,'” Ayoub told CBS News. Four days after Hertz charged Ayoub $2,300, the company filed a theft report. His bank account confirmed the payment, but Hertz didn’t remove the police report.
Five days later, Ayoub was arrested for felony theft in front of his house. Again, he showed the court the paperwork that confirmed he rented and paid for the car. The court dropped the case after reviewing the documents. Hertz says that the attorneys representing the claimants have a history of filing “baseless claims” that “misrepresents the facts.” The attorneys responded to that by saying Hertz is trying to hide a corporate disaster.
Recently, the rental car company has been in the news for a new deal with Tom Brady, Tesla, and Uber. Is any press really good press these days? The bankruptcy case is ongoing.