No one ever decides to be in a car accident. Yet they happen all the time. Car insurance is designed to financially aid the driver when it comes to an accident. But many choose not to buy coverage above the minimally required.
Full coverage insurance is not required in Nevada. Instead, drivers must carry minimum amounts of liability insurance. Proof of insurance is required to register any vehicle.
What Insurance is Needed in Nevada?
Federal law requires drivers throughout the country to carry auto insurance. The main reason is to protect others in case of an accident. Almost every state has laws concerning its independent requirements for coverage. It also has designated penalties for those who choose to drive without.
According to Nevada’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), all drivers must carry minimum liability coverage including:
- Bodily injury per person – $25,000
- Bodily injury per accident – $50,000
- Property damage per accident – $20,000
There is no grace period in Nevada. If your insurance has lapsed for a day and you are without coverage, your vehicle could be towed, and your registration may be suspended. You will pay a minimum of $251 to reinstate your license as well as towing and impound fees.
What Is Full Coverage in Nevada?
While Nevada does not require collision or comprehensive insurance coverage, it enhances the state’s minimum coverage requirements. There is no overall definition of full coverage, but typically it protects you financially for accident and non-accident-related damages, no matter who, or what is at fault. Elements of full coverage insurance include:
- Liability – Covers injuries and damage to others because of the insurer’s error
- Collision – Covers damages to the insured’s vehicle
- Comprehensive – Covers damages other than through an accident such as theft or vandalism
- Uninsured or Underinsured – Allows for coverage of additional expenses above what the at-fault party’s insurance, or lack thereof, covers
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP) – Offers coverage to the insured after an accident regardless of fault for lost wages and other indirect expenses
- MedPay – Offers coverage for injuries to the insured regardless of fault
It is Illegal to Drive Without Auto Insurance in Nevada
Simply put, it is illegal to drive without minimum insurance. The cost of an accident can demolish your finances. The legal ramifications can also be costly.
The average cost of accident claims in the U.S., according to Compare, includes more than $15,000 for bodily injury and $3,600 in property damages. The cost of a lawsuit against you as an at-fault driver can be far more,
If you are the at-fault driver in a car accident in which the other vehicle is totaled and the driver and/or passengers have suffered serious injuries, you can expect a long legal battle. You will need a qualified car accident attorney who may be able to lessen the damages against you, but the financial consequences can still be severe.
The Legal Repercussions of Driving Without Insurance
In Nevada, in a first offense of driving with a coverage lapse of up to 30 days, you may not receive a fine. You will, however, lose your license until you can show proof of coverage to the DMV.
The offense remains on your file for a minimum of three years. If your insurance lapse is longer than 30 days, fines may run between $250 to $1,000. The severity of punishment intensifies with each offense.
While being pulled over and not having insurance or being involved in an accident are the most readily understood ways of being caught without insurance, there is another. Nevada has an electronic database that flags uninsured motorists with a driver’s license for not having insurance.
Ways to Avoid a Traffic Accident
Being involved in an accident can drive up your insurance premiums. While you cannot control other drivers, you can drive defensively and follow behaviors that will lessen the possibility of a car accident.
Distracted driving, or negligence, is a key finding in car accident lawsuits. In Nevada, it is illegal to drive while talking on a handheld phone, or texting. You should also refrain from trying to discipline the children, paying attention to your dog, or eating while you drive.
A speed limit is designated as the highest safe rate of speed for that area. Speeding not only is one of the main reasons for traffic accidents, it is also a factor in close to one-third of fatal vehicle accidents nationwide. Even if you avoid an accident, speeding tickets will drive up your insurance costs, by a lot.
Avoid Driving Late at Night
Sure, the roads are less congested, but the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reveals the deadliest time to be on the road is between midnight and 3 a.m.
Don’t Drink and Drive
This may sound obvious, but driving under the influence is not only illegal but is also one of the top contributing factors to an accident. The costs can not only be deadly, but financially unobtainable.
A Car Accident Injury Attorney Can Help You Build Your Case
While a car accident injury attorney will not help you shop car insurance, an experienced one can help you navigate the legalities of a car accident whether you are the at-fault driver or a victim.
Dealing with insurance companies following an accident can be confusing. The insurance adjuster works for that insurance company. While one may sound compassionate, it is their job to get you to settle for as little money as possible.
Call Pacific West Injury Law for Help Today
If you have been involved in a car accident and suffered injuries along with damages to your car in Las Vegas or Henderson, notify your insurance company. But leave the dealings to an experienced legal team.
Pacific West Injury Law has the experience and the fortitude to go the extra mile for you. We offer a free consultation regarding your car accident. Contact us today!