Understanding Nevada’s uninsured motorist laws: Protecting yourself on the road
Last Updated on September 26,2023
According to the Insurance Research Council (IRC), uninsured motorists in Nevada were 10.6%, which is relatively close to the national average of 12.6%. The Nevada Office of Traffic Safety survey shows that the number of car crash fatalities in Nevada increased by 0.3% between 2020 and 2021.
While not all these accidents involve uninsured motorists, drivers without insurance are more likely to be involved in accidents due to their lack of coverage and potentially risky driving behavior.
Uninsured Motorist Law in Nevada
Uninsured motorist coverage (UM) is a type of auto insurance providing protection to drivers if involved in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver. If the at-fault driver cannot pay the damages, UM coverage can compensate for medical expenses, lost wages, and other related costs.
In Nevada, uninsured motorist coverage is required by law. The minimum coverage limits for UM are $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident for bodily injury, and $20,000 per accident for property damage.
Nevada offers two types of uninsured motorist coverage to ensure everyone in the vehicle is protected in case of an accident:
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UMBI) Coverage: The coverage pays for medical expenses and lost wages when injured in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver. UMBI also covers damages for pain and suffering, which are not covered by liability insurance.
Medical Payments (Medpay) coverage: It will cover the costs of treating injuries sustained by the driver and passengers, regardless of who is at fault. The coverage also includes treatment for injuries from being hit by a motor vehicle while walking as a pedestrian.
Carrying uninsured motorist coverage can provide several benefits to drivers in Nevada. For example, it can protect against hit-and-run accidents, which are unfortunately common in the state.
In one case In Henderson, a pickup truck reportedly veered off the road and struck a man on the sidewalk, resulting in his death.
Unfortunately, the pickup truck driver fled the scene. However, police arrested a suspect believed to be the driver and have charged him with multiple offenses related to the hit-and-run incident.
How to File an Uninsured Motorist Claim in Nevada
The process for filing an uninsured motorist claim in Nevada is similar to filing other types of insurance claims. Here are the steps to follow:
1. Notify the Insurance Company
Immediately contact the insurance company after the accident to report the incident and begin the claims process.
Ensure to provide all the necessary information, including the date and location of the accident, the other driver’s information (if available), and any witness statements.
2. Provide Documentation
The insurance company will likely require documentation of the accident and injuries, including police reports, medical bills, and other relevant information. Gather and provide this documentation promptly to avoid delays in the claims process.
3. Cooperate With the Investigation
The insurance company will investigate the accident to determine fault and the extent of damages. Fully cooperate with the investigations and provide additional information as requested.
4. Negotiate a Settlement
Once the investigation is complete, the insurance company will make a settlement offer. Consider hiring an attorney to help negotiate fairer compensation, as the insurance company’s primary goal is minimizing its financial liabilities.
In September 2022, the Litigation Center of the American Medical Association and State Medical Societies, the Medical Society of New Jersey (MSNJ), and the Washington State Medical Association (WSMA) filed a lawsuit against Cigna.
The suit claimed Cigna failed to pay medical claims according to physicians’ contracts with MultiPlan Corp. Instead, Cigna used an individualized payment methodology, resulting in lower payments for non participating physicians and other health professionals. The move left patients vulnerable to balance billing for physician and health service fees.
Protecting Yourself On the Road in Nevada
Staying safe on the road is crucial to avoiding accidents with uninsured motorists. Here are some practical tips for staying safe while driving:
Drive defensively: Defensive driving involves anticipating and reacting to potential hazards before they happen. Maintain a safe following distance, use turn signals, and avoid aggressive driving behaviors.
Keep the insurance coverage up-to-date: Ensure the car insurance policy is current. It will provide financial protection in case of an accident.
Carry uninsured motorist coverage: Uninsured motorist coverage financially protects drivers involved in an accident with an uninsured driver.
Stay alert: Always pay attention to the surroundings while driving. Keep an eye out for potential hazards on the road, like swerving drivers or those driving erratically.
The danger of accidents is they can happen anywhere, even when doing the right thing on the road. In Montville Township, Ohio, a truck driver avoided a collision with a school bus.
A potential tragedy was averted on the highway thanks to the quick response of a semi-truck driver and other motorists. This case showcases the importance of being alert and responsible driving.
Common Questions About Uninsured Motorist Laws in Nevada
Uninsured motorists are a common problem on Nevada’s roads and highways, and accidents involving these drivers can leave victims facing significant financial and emotional burdens. For example, in a tragic incident in July 2019, a 12-year-old girl, Sana Patel, lost her life after being thrown out of her family’s car during a crash caused by a careless uninsured driver.
The driver, Hannah Jones, was behind the wheel of Safeer Iqbal’s Vauxhall Corsa when she lost control, causing Patel’s Nissan Qashqai to spin and overturn on the M61 near Chorley. Hannah and her boyfriend fled the scene on foot, trying to take a taxi back to West Yorkshire but were later arrested.
Here are some common questions that arise about uninsured motorist laws in Nevada.
1. What happens if someone is in an accident with an uninsured motorist in Nevada?
If someone is involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist in Nevada, they can file a claim with their insurance company for uninsured motorist coverage. The coverage helps to cover damages and medical expenses if the at-fault driver lacks insurance or does not have enough insurance to cover the full extent of the damages.
2. What if the at-fault driver doesn’t have insurance to cover damages in Nevada?
If the at-fault driver does not have enough insurance to cover the damages in Nevada, the victim can file a claim with their insurance company for underinsured motorist coverage. The coverage helps to cover the difference between what the at-fault driver’s insurance covers and the total cost of the damages.
3. Is it necessary to hire a lawyer if someone is involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist in Nevada?
It’s beneficial to work with a lawyer in accidents involving uninsured motorists. A Las Vegas car accident lawyer can help navigate the claims process, negotiate with insurance companies to ensure fair compensation, and represent the victim in court if necessary.
In addition, a lawyer can help determine if other sources of compensation are available, such as personal injury protection (PIP) or medical payment (MedPay) coverage, that can help cover medical expenses and other damages.
Accidents involving uninsured motorists can be particularly challenging to navigate in Las Vegas. With the city’s bustling traffic and high tourist influx, it’s essential to understand the intricacies of uninsured motorist accidents in Las Vegas and how to protect your rights.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident in Las Vegas, you may be entitled to a car accident claim settlement in Las Vegas. Our team of legal experts will work tirelessly to negotiate on your behalf to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact us or call 702-680-1111 today to learn more.