Insurance Coverage in Nevada
If you are driving a car, truck, or motorcycle in the state of Nevada, you are legally obligated to carry insurance to protect yourself and others in the case of an accident. According to the Department of Motor Vehicles, minimum coverage must include:
- $15,000 of bodily injury coverage per person.
- $30,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident.
- $10,000 of property damage coverage.
Auto insurance companies may refer to this minimum on their policy with the shorthand “15/30/10.” This minimum coverage is called “limited liability” coverage and will financially compensate for damage to another car or any injuries to others that result from an accident that you caused, up to the maximum payout listed above.
Many people choose to purchase insurance over and above the minimum limited liability coverage in order to protect themselves and their car if they cause an accident. In order to be compensated for damage to your car from an injury that you cause, you can purchase “collision coverage.” If you hope to be reimbursed for the cost of injuries that you sustain in a car accident in which you are at fault, you can opt for “personal injury protection.”
Registering Your Insurance
When you register a car for the first time, you must provide the DMV with a copy of your insurance for them to keep on file, and you should carry proof of insurance with you at all times. If you are in an accident (or simply pulled over for speeding or traffic violations), the police will ask you for your proof of insurance. If you move to the state of Nevada, you must register your insurance with the DMV within 30 days.
Driving Without Insurance
Your driver's license and registration can both be suspended if you drive without insurance in the state of Nevada. The reinstatement fee for a vehicle registration is $251 for a first offense. If you cause an accident while uninsured, various penalties may apply, depending on the situation, from driver's license suspension or revocation to a maximum of $1000 in fines.
After a car accident, one of the first steps you can take is to file a claim with either your own or the other driver's' insurance company. You will then most likely be contacted by an insurance adjuster, whose job it is to investigate your accident, evaluate your claim, and determine the amount of money that you should be offered. Insurance adjusters do not work for you; they work for the insurance company. Therefore, their number one priority will be settling the matter as quickly and economically as they can for their employer. Insurance adjusters do not, for the most part, have extensive legal or medical training, and must handle dozens of cases a month.
This does not mean that insurance adjusters will not treat you fairly, but it is important to be aware of their goals and to be careful when speaking to them, as they will be looking for reasons to lower your settlement. Speak to them professionally and respectfully so as to make sure that you maintain a good working relationship, and make sure you include all relevant details that will support your claim so that they can document the event clearly and have a comprehensive picture of the accident. Try to provide them with as much documentation as possible so that they can inarguably justify the final settlement to their company.
Signing a Medical Release
Do not sign medical releases. While it is important to provide documentation, there is some information that should not be turned over. The insurance company of an at-fault driver will almost always ask you to sign a release of your medical records to “verify your injuries.” If signed, this will give an insurance company access to your entire medical history including extremely personal information which has nothing to do with the case. Moreover, they can use your medical history to claim that injuries you sustained stemmed from pre-existing conditions or other accidents. There are other forms of documentation that you can provide to them to prove your injuries and medical expenses.
Legal Consultation on the Nevada Insurance Claims Process
Many people choose to file insurance claims on their own and go through the whole claims process on their own. Sometimes, this can be successful. However, sometimes negotiations can break down between insurance claims adjusters and the claimant.
When this occurs, you may choose to speak with an attorney about filing a personal injury lawsuit, or simply ask them to help you negotiate with the adjuster. To speak with a legal professional about your options, call The Jacks Law Group today at (702) 834-6300 or contact us online.