YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY IS REQUIRED TO OFFER YOU COVERAGE FOR YOUR MEDICAL BILLS and DAMAGES?

Three Things your insurance company is required to do:

  1. Offer you UIM/UM benefits equal to your liability coverage;
  2. Offer you  medical payments coverage in the amount of $1,000.00;
  3. Obtain your written rejections if you do not purchase these coverages.

Auto insurance is complex and has many layers.  There are a lot of different coverages that make up what people think of as their auto insurance. This blog will focus on what is known under Nevada Law as the “higher offer rule.” This statute requires auto insurance companies to offer all Nevada insureds underinsured motorist coverage in the same limits and amounts as your comprehensive collision coverage that you purchase.  In addition, it mandates that insurance companies to offer $1,000.00 in medical payments coverage to cover medical bills, continue reading here for a professional guidance.

In July of 2018, the legislature increased the minimum motor vehicle liability coverage for Nevada to $25,000 in bodily injury per person and $50,000.00 per accident and $20,000 in property damage per accident. This is commonly cited as 25/50/20 from the previous limit’s requirements of 15/39/10. It is highly recommended by TheOneLawyer.com to purchase limits greater than that if you are able to afford higher limits as these are very low.  Liability insurance and protects you and your assets if you are liable for causing an accident to pay the other drivers and passengers. However, you also have the option of purchasing UIM coverage which covers your own injuries in the event that the adverse driver has no insurance or does not have enough insurance to pay your damages. https://www.investopedia.com/terms/u/uninsured-motorist-coverage-um.asp

The law is very clear and specific regarding this issue in the state of Nevada.  The legislature passed the following law to allow consumers to understand their options when it comes to purchasing auto insurance in Nevada: 

NRS 687B.145  Provisions in policies of casualty insurance: Proration of recovery or benefits; uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage; coverage for medical expenses; insurer not entitled to subrogation upon payment made because of underinsured vehicle coverage.

. . . 

2.  Except as otherwise provided in subsection 5, insurance companies transacting motor vehicle insurance in this State must offer, on a form approved by the Commissioner, uninsured and underinsured vehicle coverage in an amount equal to the limits of coverage for bodily injury sold to an insured under a policy of insurance covering the use of a passenger car. The insurer is not required to reoffer the coverage to the insured in any replacement, reinstatement, substitute or amended policy, but the insured may purchase the coverage by requesting it in writing from the insurer. Each renewal must include a copy of the form offering such coverage. Uninsured and underinsured vehicle coverage must include a provision which enables the insured to recover up to the limits of the insured’s own coverage any amount of damages for bodily injury from the insured’s insurer which the insured is legally entitled to recover from the owner or operator of the other vehicle to the extent that those damages exceed the limits of the coverage for bodily injury carried by that owner or operator. If an insured suffers actual damages subject to the limitation of liability provided pursuant to NRS 41.035, underinsured vehicle coverage must include a provision which enables the insured to recover up to the limits of the insured’s own coverage any amount of damages for bodily injury from the insured’s insurer for the actual damages suffered by the insured that exceed that limitation of liability.

3.  An insurance company transacting motor vehicle insurance in this State must offer an insured under a policy covering the use of a passenger car, the option of purchasing coverage in an amount of at least $1,000 for the payment of reasonable and necessary medical expenses resulting from a crash. The offer must be made on a form approved by the Commissioner. The insurer is not required to reoffer the coverage to the insured in any replacement, reinstatement, substitute or amended policy, but the insured may purchase the coverage by requesting it in writing from the insurer. Each renewal must include a copy of the form offering such coverage.

       . . . 

This law forces auto insurer companies to give their insured’s notice, on an approved form, that they can purchase medical payments coverage and underinsured motorist coverage. It is important to note that insurance companies are required to offer you $1000.00 in medical payments coverage, but you can purchase much higher limits than that to cover your medical bills.  At the personal injury Law Offices of TheOneLawyer.com, we urge our clients to purchase a minimum of $5,000.00 in medical payments coverage to protect them and pay co-pays and out of network bills.  If you do not have health insurance, you should purchase much higher limits. 

The law requires that the insurance company offer UIM/UM coverage to an insured person in the amount equal to the limits of their liability bodily injury coverage.  This means that if you purchase liability limits in the amount of 100/300, the insurance company must offer you UIM/UM coverage in the amount of 100/300.  The insurance company has the legal duty to prove that they made this offer at the time insurance was purchased and to keep in their possession the applicable forms. The insurance company is also required to use language “understandable to the layman” in these forms meaning that the forms used cannot contain technical terminology that may be difficult to interpret. 

Most insurance companies in Nevada use the same form because the form needs to be approved by the Nevada Department of insurance.  After the policy is purchased, although the insurance company is not required to re-offer the coverage at the time of renewal, “Each renewal must include a copy of the form offering these coverages.”.   At the personal injury accident law offices of TheOneLawyer.com, we urge you to review your insurance policies yearly.  It is important to review your insurance policies regularly to make sure that the coverage that you have is the best needed for your family and needs can change from year to year. If you have any questions regarding any insurance policies or coverages, please feel free to call the personal injury Offices of TheOneLawyer.com. We have been practicing personal injury law and have worked directly for a major insurance company in the past.  Call the personal injury Offices of TheOneLawyer.com to answer any questions that you have regarding your auto insurance policies and coverages.

If you have a question regarding UIM/UM coverage and/or any questions regarding any personal injury, whether from a car accident or a slip and fall or any combination of injuries, please do not hesitate to call TheOneLawyer.com. At TheOneLawyer.com, we are here to serve our community and provide legal services in the Henderson and Las Vegas area. We are a boutique law firm providing experienced and personal representation to injured clients.  At the Law Offices of Laura Payne-Hunt, TheOneLawyer.com we provide professional and personal service to each and every one of our clients on various legal matters and have over 15 years of experience in reviewing insurance policies and in Nevada insurance law.   If you have a question regarding any type of personal injury or paying your medical bills from an accident, please do not hesitate to call the offices of TheOneLawyer.com and speak directly to attorney Laura Marie Payne-Hunt, Esq. a Henderson Injury Attorney for over 15 years.  Laura is recognized as one of Nevada’s Top 100 Lawyers.  She has the experience and knowledge to obtain the maximum settlement you deserve.  Please call our office if you or a loved one is injured.  We can make sure that you receive the care you need and deserve and advise on how to preserve evidence.  

At our office, we are experienced in helping injured victims get the compensation they are entitled to.  Insurance companies never have the best interest of the injured person at the top of their priorities.  They want to pay as little on every claim as possible.  Having worked for an insurance company as an attorney for 9 years before opening my boutique law firm specializing in helping injured people, I have reviewed thousands of auto accident claims and policy provisions.   

At the Henderson and Las Vegas Accident injury law offices of TheOneLaweyer.com, Laura Marie Payne-Hunt and her staff are here to help you and your family in the event that accidents and tragedies occur.  For any of your legal needs, do not hesitate to contact our Henderson and Las Vegas Accident injury offices.  TheOneLawyer.com is a boutique, family-owned law firm that specializes in helping injured people and the community of Las Vegas and Henderson Nevada with legal issues involving auto accidents, wrongful deaths, slip and falls, truck accidents, injuries to children, bicycle accidents, dog bites, product liability claims, and all types of injury claims.  Please do not hesitate to call us anytime you have a legal question or you or a loved one has sustained an injury at 702-450-(HUNT) 4868 and text 24/7 at 702-600-0032.