In the July 2017 legislative session, the Nevada Legislature passed Senate Bill 308 (SB 308) which raised the minimum limits of liability for operating a vehicle in Nevada. The minimum limits for automobile insurance had not changed since the 1980’s. Prior to July 1, 2018, the minimum limits every vehicle on the road was required to carry was $15,000/$30,000/$10,000. Interpreted, this means each vehicle had to maintain liability limits for bodily injury to cover any individual to whom you caused injury in a car accident up to $15,000.00. Additionally, it had to cover all individuals injured in the amount of $30,000.00. Property damage caused by a vehicle had to be covered up to $10,000.00.
Why Has Car Insurance Increased For Henderson, Nevada Residents?
While the insurance limits did not change during those decades, the cost of medical care following a car accident, along with the expenses associated with vehicle repair and replacement have increased dramatically. In many accidents where a person was taken to the hospital by an ambulance from the scene the medical billings alone would total close to $15,000.00. This meant there was no coverage for any additional or follow up treatment and nothing to compensate for pain and suffering. Based upon the increased value of vehicles on the road many individuals had their cars totaled by the insurance company but would not receive enough to pay off the outstanding loan on their vehicle. Individuals who did not maintain “gap” insurance (insurance which covers the difference between the value of the car and the amount owed on the car), they were left making payments on a car which they no longer had. The low limits caused significant problems for innocent victims of automobile accidents both in getting compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering and repairing/replacing their vehicles.
With the passage of SB 308 the limits have increased to $25,000/$50,000/$20,000. While this may not be enough to cover an individual injured by the negligence of another, it is a vast improvement from the prior limits. These limits are sufficient in many cases, but can be insufficient in many severe auto accidents. As a result, you should absolutely seek out uninsured or underinsured coverage as well as considering medical payments coverage. There are many drivers who ignore the law and do not carry any insurance or who will opt to maintain the new minimum coverages which can be woefully insufficient. For example, if a negligent driver causes a serious accident or an accident involving multiple vehicles (which is incredibly common), the limits can be exhausted within a few days leaving you without proper medical care and potentially without a vehicle. You should consult with an attorney or an insurance professional to determine how best to protect your assets and yourself as you enter the roadways in Nevada. This change in the law is a great time to evaluate your coverages and make sure you are adequately insured.
In the end, SB 308 is a slight improvement over the prior minimum liability limits. However, the most important reason to obtain insurance is to protect you and those you care about. Don’t insure everyone in the world except yourself and your family. Make sure you purchase UM/UIM coverage and look into medical payments coverage. This is especially true if you do not have health insurance to cover the bills after an accident.
Have You Been In A Henderson Car Accident And Need Legal Help?
If you have any questions about insurance and how it can affect you following a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call us directly at 866.299.0558 to schedule your free consultation today.