Las Vegas Automobile Accident Attorney Discusses Auto Insurance Laws
The state of Nevada requires automobile liability insurance policies to cover $15,000 for bodily injury or death of a single person in any one accident, $30,000 for bodily injury or death of two or more persons in a single accident, and $10,000 for injury to or the destruction of property of others in any one accident. Coverage for property damage only covers the cost of damage you or your car causes during an accident, it does not cover any damage to your vehicle or property. Nevada does not require drivers to hold insurance that covers damages to their own car, though it is possible and wise to purchase such insurance, called “comprehensive” or “collision” insurance. Insurance must be validated by an insurance company that is authorized to do business in the state of Nevada. As insurance can get tricky, it’s best to seek out advice from a Las Vegas automobile accident attorney for your specific situation.
In order to register a vehicle, a Nevada Evidence of Insurance card must be presented. This card must be presented at a variety of registrations, including the first time you register, all renewals, and any reinstatement or license plate changes. This card also must be carried in the vehicle at all times and presented when requested by a law enforcement officer.
When a driver purchases new insurance or renews their policy, the policy number or insurance company name may change. This must be reported to the DMV as soon as possible and may be completed online.
The following information must be provided by the driver or his or her agent:
- The insurance company’s name (exactly as it appears on the card)
- The policy number (exactly as it appears on the card)
- The effective date
- The termination or expiration date
Even a single day of insurance coverage lapse will result in a possible suspension of registration and a reinstatement fee of $251.
Nevada does not require drivers to hold insurance against collisions with underinsured or uninsured drivers, though it is very helpful in those cases.
Nevada is a “Fault” State
Unlike many other states, Nevada is a “fault” state, meaning the individual who caused the car accident is solely financially liable to cover the costs associated with physical injuries, vehicle damages, and other losses due to the collision. This means that the insurance policy held by the individual who is considered “at fault” is the only policy that is relevant. If you don’t have insurance but you weren’t the person who caused the accident, you are very lucky! Penalties for not holding insurance when you are in a car accident that is considered someone else’s fault are surprisingly minimal – there should be no significant impact on your case. In “no fault” states, each driver must file a claim with his or her insurance company. Typically, each insurer will have to pay some portion of the damages., regardless of who was to blame. It is important you seek the legal advice from a Las Vegas automobile accident attorney to discuss your situation in specifics.
In “fault” states such as Nevada, there are few restrictions on how drivers and passengers may seek compensation from the responsible party. The most common options are:
- To file a claim under your own insurance coverage – You may file claims to your health or automobile insurance provider
- To file a claim with the other driver’s car insurance company – This is often called a “third party car insurance claim”
- To file a personal injury lawsuit seeking compensation from the responsible driver
What to Do After an Accident
As soon as possible, start gathering evidence and information about the accident. If you aren’t seriously hurt at the time of the collision, take pictures and gather information regarding witnesses. Gather contact information from everyone that was involved in the accident, drivers and passengers. Record all license plate numbers of affected vehicles, and be sure to collect the driver’s license number and policy details of the individuals that may be responsible for the collision. Be sure to seek legal advice from an experienced Las Vegas automobile accident attorney regarding next steps, such as seeking legal recourse for any injuries or damages.
When the at-fault driver has no insurance or poor insurance, it can significantly complicate your compensation. Most car accident cases are settled out of court, but if the at-fault driver cannot settle, you have to file legal action against them in a civil court. If the driver has a policy with a limit that is less than the cost of treatment or repairs, you will not be able to receive the appropriate amount of money from their insurance company and will need to take the at-fault driver to court to receive this money. Cheap insurance companies will pressure you to accept offers that are lower than what you deserve and will force you to go to court if you don’t settle. Court can take a long time with no guarantee that you will receive the money you deserve. Having an experienced Las Vegas automobile accident attorney on your side can make a big difference in the process of getting the appropriate compensation.
Call a Las Vegas Automobile Accident Attorney If You’ve Been in a Vehicle Accident
With over 15 years of experience providing exceptional legal representation throughout Las Vegas, you can trust our lawyers at Harris & Harris have the skills and expertise to handle your case with the best services.