Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Nevada: Do You Need It?

Uninsured motorist coverage must be offered by Nevada insurers, but drivers are not legally required to purchase it as part of minimum insurance requirements.
Written by Cameron Thiessen
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
background
Uninsured motorist coverage
isn’t legally mandatory in
Nevada
—but with 14% of Nevada drivers uninsured, it’s a very good idea to have it.
Nevada’s car insurance requirements include
bodily injury liability
and
property damage liability
coverage. The amounts required are fairly average, following a 25/50/20 format. That’s $25,000 of bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 per accident, and $20,000 of property damage liability per accident.
Jerry
, the
car insurance
super app, is your source for deciding whether or not you need uninsured motorist coverage in Nevada. Plus we’ll tell you all about how you can use the Jerry app to find the cheapest prices on your Nevada car insurance costs—without passing up on the coverage you need!
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Do you need uninsured motorist coverage in Nevada?

Uninsured motorist coverage is not legally required in Nevada—but does that mean you don’t need it? 
According to the
Insurance Information Institute (III)
, 10.4% of drivers in Nevada were estimated to be uninsured in 2019, ranking it 32nd in the country. Mississippi ranks first with an estimated 29.4% of drivers driving uninsured.
If you get hit by a driver in Nevada, there is about a one in ten chance that that driver will be uninsured. But drivers that purchase just the minimum
liability insurance
required might also be underinsured, depending on the damage they do when they hit you.
This is where uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) insurance kicks in. It only costs about $50-$75 annually in Nevada, and it makes sure that you get the payout you need after a crash, even if the other driver’s liability insurance can’t cover the costs of your medical expenses.

How uninsured motorist insurance works in Nevada

Let’s take a closer look at how this works.
Nevada’s car insurance law
requirements are $25,000 of bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 per accident, and $20,000 of property damage liability per accident. However, while this is the legal requirement, having insurance that only meets the minimum limits is risky, and many drivers have this minimal coverage while others forgo car insurance altogether. Uninsured motorist coverage provides payment for medical-related expenses resulting from an accident where the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured—meaning their limits are too low to cover the entirety of your loss

What’s available

So what kind of uninsured motorist coverage should you buy in Nevada? 
The UM/UIM insurance available in Nevada falls into two categories:
  • Uninsured motorist coverage (UM): Covers costs for you and your passengers if the at-fault driver does not have insurance
  • Underinsured Motorist (UIM): Covers costs for you and your passengers if the at-fault driver has insufficient coverage
There are many states with much lower liability minimum requirements and much higher rates of uninsured drivers. But since uninsured motorist coverage is so affordable in Nevada, it’s a very good idea to add it to your car insurance policy.
It may not be required for you to purchase UM, but it is required for every insurance company in Nevada to offer it, thanks to
Nevada Revised Statute 687B.145(2)
. Drivers have the option to decline this coverage in writing at any time. MORE:
Nevada car accident laws

What it covers

The main purpose of UM/UIM in Nevada is to make sure that the medical expenses suffered by you and/or your passengers are covered after an accident, even if the at-fault driver’s insurance can’t cover them. Here are some things UM/UIM will pay for:
  • Reasonable and necessary medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Future lost earning capacity
As you can see, UM/UIM does not pay for vehicle repairs. However, your insurance company will issue payment under your
collision coverage
if your car is damaged in an accident, whether the other driver has coverage or not—you are responsible for paying the deductible.

How to make a claim 

Always exchange information with the other drivers involved as possible
after an accident
occurs.
You’ll want to collect the following:
  • Driver’s license information
  • Insurance information
  • Photos of the scene
  • Eyewitness information
At this point, you probably won’t know if the other driver has an active insurance policy, but it's your insurance provider's job to find out and handle the situation.
Once you are in a safe location and have the information you collected handy, file a claim with your insurance provider.
Claim agents are used to walking people through the claims process, so you’ll likely have helpful guidance. They’ll have you explain how the collision happened, ask you to provide a few pieces of documentation (information you collected at the time of the accident), and then they will explain what coverages you have on your policy.
If the claim adjuster finds that the at-fault driver is uninsured or has insufficient insurance, they will automatically start issuing payments under the applicable coverages.
If you or one of your passengers was injured and needed immediate medical attention, give the healthcare provider your car insurance information instead of your health insurance information. The hospital will contact your insurance carrier and the adjuster will set up direct payments toward your medical bills on your behalf if UM/UIM comes into play. Nevada has another optional coverage that you may see listed on your policy called
medical payments coverage (MedPay)
. If you selected this coverage, initial payments towards your medical expenses would come from this coverage first, regardless of who was at fault for the accident.
Once this coverage is exhausted, UM/UIM will automatically kick in up to your policy limits. If you have any outstanding medical expenses that exceed the limits on your car insurance policy, then your health insurance may provide some additional coverage. MORE:
Here’s what happens if you’re in a car accident without insurance

Why it’s a good idea to buy uninsured motorist insurance in Nevada

The main reason you wouldn’t add uninsured motorist insurance to your car insurance policy is because of the extra cost, as opposed to just meeting required state minimums. Naturally, you’re trying to keep your insurance costs as low as possible, but there are plenty of good reasons to purchase UM, even if it means adding some extra dollars to your monthly payments.

Nevada’s minimum insurance requirements might not be adequate

Nevada’s minimum liability insurance requirements are on par with most other U.S. states, but your expenses could still exceed those liability limits after a severe crash. With medical costs steadily on the rise across the country, the current average cost of inpatient hospitalization resulting from a car accident is about $57,000. You can always sue for damages rather than going through uninsured motorist insurance, but personal injury lawyers can get expensive fast. The average hourly rate for a personal injury attorney in Nevada is $350—far more than the annual cost of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage! 
Insurance experts recommend carrying higher bodily injury limits of $100,000 per person and $300,000 per occurrence with $100,000 in property damage—these limits will protect you best in most situations. Getting UM/UIM coverage to match these higher limits means you are protecting yourself and your family as much as you are others, and it will give you peace of mind when you need it the most.

Nevada has a high rate of hit and runs resulting in severe injuries

UM/UIM might also kick in if you’re involved in
a hit-and-run accident
While fatal crashes are on the decline in Nevada over recent years, pedestrian crashes still make up about 24% of all fatal crashes in Nevada. Clark County contributes to the majority of fatal-crash and hit-and-run numbers, thanks to the added dangers of
Las Vegas
traffic.
Hit-and-runs are a problem around the country, too. A hit-and-run crash occurs about once every minute somewhere in the U.S. If you’re hit by a driver who runs off without being able to get their license and insurance info, you will be unable to file a claim under their liability insurance, leaving you uncovered.
Carrying insurance like UM/UIM or Medpay can insure that you’re able to recover damages even after being involved in a Nevada hit-and-run accident.

Up to one in ten Nevada drivers is uninsured

Nevada may not be nearly as bad as states like
Florida
or
Mississippi
when it comes to the number of uninsured drivers on the roads, but one in ten is still a worrisome number. Not only is this higher than the national average, but you can also expect it to be worse in cities like Las Vegas. 
Even if you drive out of state, the national average for uninsured drivers is 6%, meaning there’s always at least a 1 in 20 chance throughout the country that a driver who hits you will be uninsured/underinsured.

How to save on uninsured motorist coverage in Nevada

You shouldn’t be deterred away from uninsured motorist coverage just because of the price, especially when you have Jerry in your corner! UM/UIM only costs about $50-$75 for a year, and Jerry can save you far more than that thanks to its proven automatic comparison shopping method!
Jerry
is a
trustworthy insurance comparison app
partnering with 55+ insurance companies around the country, and we’re designed to find you cheap car insurance no matter what you drive! In just 45 seconds, Jerry can gather quotes for your insurance policy in real-time from all of these different companies. Then, Jerry gives you a short list of all of the best deals available to you, so you can find the cheapest car insurance every time!
And you’re likely to save much more than enough to cover the cost of your uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance. The average Jerry user saves over $800 annually on their car insurance premium!
“When I started shopping for insurance for my new car, the estimates I received were around $150.
Jerry
found me full-coverage insurance for $102. This is NOT a joke!” —Auden D.
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