Should car rental companies be liable for accidents caused by their drivers?

According to the Graves Amendment, passed five years ago, the answer is no. Before this law was passed, for more than 90 years, rental companies were held accountable for renting cars to reckless drivers. After the enactment of the bill, a driver can injure someone, return to their home state or country, and stick taxpayers with the bill.   But some argue the law is unconstitutional, not to mention flawed. It’s an especially critical issue in states like New York or Florida, with high rates of tourism.

Since its enactment, victims’ rights attorney Ira Leesfield has been attempting to litigate the Graves Amendment, challenging its constitutionality, and yesterday morning in a Senate Subcommittee meeting asked Congress to repeal the bill. View the video of the hearing here, and skip forward an hour and forty minutes to listen to Leesfield’s testimony. You can also read his testimony here.