How is a Mexican car insurance policy different from a U.S. or Canadian car insurance policy?
Each country governs uniquely, and the laws that are on the books may differ significantly from what you are accustomed to at home. The use of English Common Law as the foundation for both the U.S. and Canada presumes innocence, requiring that guilt be proven in a situation. However, that assumption is quite the opposite in Mexico where Napoleonic Code presumes guilt. Proving your innocence can be costly and frustrating. Additionally, you are expected to have a proper Mexican car insurance policy as a foreign driver in the country. A simple oversight in this detail can create huge legal and financial problems if you are involved in an accident.
Proof of your Mexican car insurance policy is your proof of ability to pay, an important factor in removing the burden of guilt if you are detained in connection with a
vehicular accident. The authorities will investigate and determine guilt, but your possession of proper insurance documentation and appropriate coverage will be a key factor in the outcome.
Important considerations when you research and purchase a Mexican car insurance policy:
- Lack of insurance coverage can lead to your financial responsibility for damages
- You may be responsible for an injured party’s livelihood if there is a fatality (Federal 502 Law) or serious injury
- If you can’t pay for the damages, you can be held until your obligations are satisfied
- Your vehicle can be held until you satisfy your debt
- It may be expensive to find legal representation if you are faced with these issues and have no legal insurance coverage.
- Insufficient Mexican car insurance policy liability limits can be a problem if damages are significant
- Language barriers can make the entire situation more frustrating and stressful
Selecting Proper Insurance Coverage to Avoid Serious Issues
Your auto insurance for driving your vehicle at home is not enough for Mexican authorities. Policies must be underwritten by providers that are recognized by the Mexican government. While some policies for U.S. and Canada cars include some coverage within strictly limited border zones, these don’t address damages to other cars or individuals. At the minimum, you need a liability-only policy to cover your obligations if you are responsible for an accident. Full coverage is necessary if you want damages to your own vehicle to be covered. Indemnity limits are of huge importance because Mexican law requires that in the event of a fatality at the hands of a third party, the dependents will be compensated at the equivalent of 5,000 days of wages for that state. This differs greatly from state to state, making it important to consult with a knowledgeable agent or site in selecting your coverage package.