Learn Why Your Current Auto And Medical Plans Are Not Enough
Mexico consistently ranks amongst the top ten destinations for travelers. Its tropical resorts and mountain retreats offer a range of activities from shopping to adventure sports. It also creates the right circumstances for accidents and injuries.
According to the Department of State, the lead U.S. foreign affairs agency, many American visitors assume the standards of security and safety are the same as they are in the U.S. These presumptions have lead not only to serous injuries, but even deaths. Compounded by differences in Mexican law, accidents and medical emergencies can become a costly and bureaucratic nightmare. As a result, the Department of State urges citizens to take responsibility for their safety, and to also ensure that they have the auto and medical insurance needed.
Driving and Mexican Law
Mexico’s law is based on Napoleonic Code where guilt is assumed over innocence. As a result, all drivers must have a Mexican insurance policy from a company authorized to do business in Mexico to cover damages or injuries.
“U.S liability insurance is simply not valid in Mexico,” says Linden Gray, Director of the http://MexicanInsuranceStore.com. “That even includes most of the major U.S. collision and comprehensive coverage plans.”
In addition to the required Mexican auto insurance, you should also consider a plan that covers legal aid and bond fees.
“In Mexico, it is considered a felony to have a traffic accident, says Gray. “While the police are investigating who is at fault, your vehicle may be impounded and you will be detained by Mexican authorities.”
The Department of State further warns U.S. travelers that they can be prevented from leaving the country even if “life-saving medical care” is required.
Emergency Medical Services
Mexico has a free national health care system; however, visitors are not entitled to this service. Tourists can only receive medical treatment and medications from private clinics and hospitals. Gray’s company strongly urges customers to check their medical insurance company to confirm whether their policy applies in Mexico and whether it will cover emergency expenses such as a medical evacuation.
Surprisingly, most Mexican auto insurance plans will only help you find a facility, and may only cover up to four passengers. Many medical assistance plans only cover portions of the cost depending on location, activity or cause of injury. For those with the Social Security Medicare Program, costs for hospital or medical care outside the United States are not covered at all.
“It’s important to fill the gaps and exclusions that your auto and medical insurances have,” says Gray. “In addition to Mexican auto insurance, travelers should add an emergency medical assistance option because most health plans exclude medical evacuation in foreign countries.”
Gray recommends a plan like Assist America which is used by the American Medical Association and the American Red Cross. This type of plan provides services such as emergency medical evacuations, critical care monitoring, and guaranteed hospital admission.
Selecting A Plan
The easiest and quickest way to find Mexican auto insurance is online. When selecting a plan, look for one that offers the following:
• Third Party (Civil) Liability
• Medical Expenses for Driver and Occupants
• Assist America Medical and Travel Assistance
• Physical Damage and Total Theft of Vehicle
• Legal Assistance and Bail Bond
• Roadside Assistance
• Partial Theft and Vandalism
• Guaranteed Hospital Admission
Make sure the plan covers you during your entire stay. Most plans have daily, six month, and annual policies.
In addition, take into consideration the type of activities you plan to enjoy and their locations. Look for medical emergency assistance plans with very few limitations or exclusions such as:
• Maximum Of Number of Passengers (Other Plans Only Cover Up To 4 Passengers)
• Limits less than$100,000 per passenger for Any Medical Assistance Service Including Expensive Air Or Land Evacuation.
• Rural Mexico Territory Exclusion. (Almost all emergency assistance wording says “We will do the best we can in rural Mexico”)
• Exclusions For Pre-Conditions (Except Late Pregnancy)
• Sport Or Adventure Activity Exclusions (Surfing, Cycling, Mountain Biking, Mountain Climbing, Snorkeling, Kayaking Or Diving In Mexico Are All OK with Assist America )
• Civil War Or Terrorism Exclusions