What to Do If You Get in a Car Accident with No Insurance
A major part of being a responsible driver is to carry a minimum amount of car insurance – in fact, Nevada state law requires you to do so. However, you may not have insurance for a number of reasons, from finances to a lack of time. If you are in a car accident and do not have insurance, here are some steps you can take with the help of a Las Vegas car accident attorney to protect yourself and your assets.
Nevada Car Insurance Requirements
Nevada follows a traditional fault-based car accident system, which means that the person responsible for causing an accident must pay for the other party’s injuries and damages – including medical bills, car repairs, and lost wages.
Usually, this compensation comes from the driver’s insurance policy. As a result, Nevada requires all drivers to carry the following minimum amounts of car insurance.
- $20,000 in total property damage coverage per accident
- $50,000 in total bodily injury or death liability per accident
- $25,000 in bodily injury or death liability per person involved in an accident
If you suffer injuries in a car accident caused by another person, you have three basic options for collecting compensation. You can file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company, you can file a claim with your own insurance company, or you can file a personal injury lawsuit in Nevada civil court.
If you do not have your own car insurance, collecting compensation after an accident can become very difficult – even if you were not at fault.
Nevada’s No Pay, No Play Laws
In April 2016, Nevada legislators passed No Pay, No Play laws that make it very difficult for drivers without insurance to collect compensation after an accident. If you suffered injuries in an accident and do not have insurance, you are violating Nevada state law by not carrying the minimum amount of coverage.
Because you are in violation of Nevada state law, the court or insurance companies will not award you the full compensation you need to recover from your injuries. Regardless of how much money you need to recover, the courts will only award you a limited amount – leading to an additional hardship.
In addition, you can face other administrative policies for not carrying car insurance in Nevada.
- Registration suspensions
- Reinstatement fees totaling at least $251
- Additional fees and fines depending on the length of your lack of coverage and the number of previous offenses on your record
However, there are some circumstances where you could receive full compensation for your injuries, even if you do not have insurance. If you suffered injuries in a hit-and-run, you can collect full compensation. If the other driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of your accident, you can also pursue maximum damages.
What to Do After a Car Accident in Nevada
If you are in an accident and do not have car insurance in Nevada, do not panic. You can still claim some compensation for your injuries, but it is important that you take the following steps to protect your interests and to help your future claim.
- Do not leave the scene, even if you do not have insurance. Hit-and-run charges are much more serious than driving without insurance.
- Seek medical attention and bring law enforcement to the scene. These reports will be crucial pieces of evidence.
- Be honest about your lack of insurance. Exchange your name, phone number, address, and vehicle information with the other driver.
- Take pictures of the scene and ask any witnesses in the area for their contact information.
- Contact a car accident attorney in Las Vegas to discuss your options for compensation.
It is important to have car insurance in the state of Nevada, especially when you are in an accident. However, you still have options for collecting compensation if someone else’s negligence or recklessness. If you are in an accident and do not have insurance, contact a Nevada car accident attorney to discuss what your next steps should be.