Mexico has specific laws for auto insurance just like most countries and violating those laws can get you in trouble with the law. Before ever stepping foot in Mexico, be sure to review and understand Mexico’s laws. This is especially important if you plan on driving into Mexico. Mexico has strict rules on auto insurance for U.S. vehicles coming into the state. To drive legally in Mexico, you must carry:
- 50,000 pesos in property damage
- 100,000 pesos in personal injury expenses
If you’re caught driving without insurance, you could face a fine between 2,000 and 4,000 pesos. If you cause a bad accident while not having insurance, however, you could be arrested until you’re able to provide proof of responsibility, which shows that you have the means to pay for the damages you caused.
Reasons you may be arrested in Mexico include (but are not limited to):
Mexico has its own strict legal processes for those arrested. Simply being an American citizen will not prevent you or excuse you from being arrested. If you’re arrested in the U.S., the U.S. Embassy must be notified immediately by Mexican authorities. Make sure to cooperate with Mexican officials.
- Violating traffic laws
- Driving without insurance
- Possessing a firearm
- Trafficking illegal drugs into Mexico
Basic Mexico Laws
It is illegal to bring firearms into Mexico. Arrests for federal offenses can be made at the local, state or federal levels. If arrested, you will be entitled to a proper legal defense and a translator, as all criminal proceedings in Mexico are in Spanish. You don’t have to give any incriminating answers or testimonies if accused, though you will have to give non-incriminating personal information such as your name, age and citizenship.
Mexico traffic laws include:
There are certain areas in Mexico where auto insurance may not be required, but it’s still required that you carry proof of financial responsibility. You may not be carrying around enough money to pay for expensive damages after a wreck, so it’s best that you simply purchase Mexican auto insurance to make your trip quick, easy and safe.
- You must drive on the right side of the road
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is illegal over 0.8 percent
- Using a cell phone or other mobile device while driving is illegal
- The average cost of riding on a toll road is $10 USD every 100 kilometers
- A sign with a crossed “E” means that parking is not allowed
- All drivers must carry liability insurance
- Foreign car insurance is not accepted
- Foreign vehicles need a temporary importation permit (TIP) to cross the border
Why is Mexico Auto Insurance Required in Mexico?
Mexico requires all drivers to carry a certain amount of liability auto insurance in order to pay for any damages they might cause. Bodily injury liability covers medical expenses while property damage liability helps pay for physical damage you my cause to someone else.
Keep in mind that your U.S. auto insurance won’t cover you in Mexico. Some insurance companies do provide Mexico insurance riders, but this coverage is limited and far from comprehensive. Be sure to purchase Mexico auto insurance before traveling to Mexico. Only liability insurance is typically required, but you may also want to consider purchasing comprehensive, collision and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage for your vehicle. If an accident occurs, liability insurance won’t pay for the damages to you or your personal vehicle.
A trip to Mexico should be a fun, relaxing time. Make sure you have everything you need before your trip so you can enjoy all Mexico has to offer without worry.