For those of you driving around in the Land of Enchantment, do you know what having New Mexico car insurance really entails? Every state has its own set of rules. Therefore, it’s important that you understand New Mexico’s rules and regulations before hitting the road. Read on to learn some of the basics of auto insurance in New Mexico and then see if maybe you can find cheaper NM car insurance rates when you are finished.
Basic Auto Coverage for New Mexico Drivers
When it comes to New Mexico car insurance, you must have liability for your automobile. This is the only basic requirement of New Mexico drivers. With this said, you should understand the breakdown of the minimum you are required to pay concerning your basic liability coverage.
The state of New Mexico requires the following minimums of its drivers:
$20,000 per person for death or injury of one person
$50,000 per accident for death or injury of two or more people
$10,000 per accident for property damage
When looking at a New Mexico car insurance policy, you will most likely see the above numbers listed as 20/50/10. These numbers really are important to understand. The first number is the maximum of what your insurance company will pay out per person injured in an auto accident. The second number is what is paid out for medical costs. The last number is the amount that will be paid for property damage. Property can range from another person’s house, vehicle, building, light pole, and more.
Take note that if the $50,000 doesn’t cover the total medical costs of the injured party or parties, you could in fact be sued for more money. This is why it’s always a good idea to consider upgrading your New Mexico auto insurance coverage.
New Mexico Car Insurance Upgrade Options
In a nutshell, if you can afford more NM auto insurance coverage, you should get it. Although it’s not necessary, it can be quite beneficial should the repercussions of an accident exceed your basic liability.
Some supplemental insurance you can get to upgrade your basic policy are:
Comprehensive – insures damage caused by non-accident circumstances such as theft, weather damage and vandalism.
Uninsured and/or Underinsured – provides coverage to you when the other driver lacks insurance or pays less for their insurance than you do.
Collision – protects your vehicle when damaged by an object or another vehicle.
New Mexico Car Insurance Alternative
Yes, there is an alternative to having insurance coverage through a New Mexico car insurance provider, but it can be a little harder on your wallet. According to New Mexico rules, an individual can drive the roads as long as they can prove financial responsibility. What this means is that you don’t have to have insurance, but you do have to have $60,000 set aside as a cash deposit or surety bond.
With this said, it means that you really don’t have much flexibility should your accident contain extensive damage. The $60,000 might not be enough to protect your assets.
For those of you repeat offenders out there, this is your only other option if you wish to drive. Having a record of habitual recklessness will result in a New Mexico car insurance company declining your request for coverage. To sum it up, do your best to keep your driving record in the best shape possible.
New Mexico IIDB and Penalties
The New Mexico Insurance Identification Database (IIDB) monitors the insurance status of registered drivers. How does it work? When you obtain New Mexico auto insurance coverage, your provider will update the database. If you fail to make payments or do anything else to cause a lapse in your policy, your provider will update the database with that information as well.
If the database runs across an uninsured driver, a request to fix the problem will be sent out via mail. If you keep your car insured, there’s really no reason to receive contact from the IIDB.
If you get pulled over by an officer while driving and fail to have insurance, you can probably expect a citation. If by chance your insurance card was hard to find, then you can take it into court to waive the ticket. However, if you were uninsured at the time you were pulled over, you may be charged with a misdemeanor, lose your car’s registration or have to pay a fine up to $300.
Finding Cheap New Mexico Auto Insurance Rates
As stated earlier, you should always get as much auto coverage as possible. It’s smart, it’s practical and it could save you from a lot of financial headaches in the future. Shop around and compare multiple insurers to find the cheapest New Mexico car insurance rates.