There have been increasing reports of rental car companies trying to charge drivers for damage that already existed on the cars.

Travel columnist Christopher Elliot reported renting a car from Enterprise in Long Island, New York. When he picked up the car he pointed out some existing nicks and scratches to the company’s representative. He was assured not to worry.

After driving the car only a short distance and having it only a couple of days, he was charged for those very scratches.  The company did not tell him about this charge. Three weeks after the rental he was mailed a bill for $320 dollars.

There have been increasing reports of rental car companies trying to raise funds in dishonest ways such as this. While, some reports may merely be the bias perspective of a renter having to pay an extra charge, there has undoubtedly been some wrongful acts by the car companies.

An important hint for avoiding this particular scam is you should never take a car that is already visually damaged. If the representative tells you not to worry, you should worry. Make sure there are no marks on the car that you could later be blamed for.