Vehicle rental businesses are being hit from both sides, with criminals stealing their vehicles and then Victoria Police seemingly failing to assist in a meaningful way. Enough is enough. If your rental business is copping a double blow, take a quick survey and help us lobby to turn things around for the better.
What's the issue?
Members of the Victorian Vehicle Rental Industry Group (VVRIG) have approached VACC seeking clarity on how Victoria Police records instances of non-returned or stolen rental vehicles. This occurs where a customer has not returned a rental vehicle by a designated date and all attempts to contact the customer have failed or the customer refuses to cooperate.
VACC is seeking to support its Car Rental Industry members who are dealing with varying degrees of assistance from Victoria Police. Victoria Police often treats this issue as a civil matter. This can be frustrating. We must find a fair and practical solution.
How you can help.
To lobby effectively, VACC needs hard evidence on the magnitude of this issue from its members that operate a vehicle rental, courtesy car, loan vehicle or leasing business. The electronic survey attached below will help compile this necessary evidence.
VACC previously used a similar information-gathering process to compile evidence-based portfolios that enabled the retail fuel industry to avoid a similar catastrophic government policy. VACC will lobby to reduce the 28-day waiting period to a more reasonable timeframe of seven days.
What is the Victoria Police position on stolen rental vehicles?
Formal advice received from the Victoria Police Policy and Legislation Division is that Victoria Police only takes a report when:
- fraud or deception is used when hiring or leasing a vehicle
- 28 days have passed since the expiry of the lease or hire contract between the respective parties.
What's worrying about the Victoria Police policy?
It concerns rental industry members that a 28-day period will allow for rental vehicles to disappear completely, be damaged indiscriminately, be utilised in criminal activities, and reduce the earnings of many rental companies. Most rental industry participants either self-insure or have large insurance excesses, and many insurance companies do not offer insurance for stolen vehicles. VACC will lobby to reduce the 28-day waiting period to a more reasonable timeframe of seven days.
You can help to overturn this policy by taking this survey (it takes around five minutes).