If you are driving in Mexico and have an accident, it needs to be handled differently than if you had that same accident in the United States. You cannot just exchange information and be on your way. In Mexico, you are guilty until proven innocent so follow these instructions in the event you have an accident.
What to do:
- Make sure everyone is okay.
- Call the number on your Mexican auto insurance policy. (The first page of your policy should have instructions on what to do if you have an accident. Remember, your insurance from your home country does not cover you in Mexico and you must have an insurance policy that does.)
- The insurance company will send an adjuster immediately who will assess the damage and file any paperwork required while they are on-site.
- If your car is not driveable, the adjuster will also call a tow truck and arrange to have it taken to the nearest repair shop. (Note: towing is sometimes an option on your policy so check the details.)
- If the accident involved serious injuries and someone needs medical attention, tell the online agent when you call as they will send emergency services to the scene of the accident.
- If the police end up being involved, it is possible that you and the other drivers are arrested until it is determined who is at fault. If this happens, call your consulate to let them know what happened.
What not to do:
- Leave the scene – call your Mexican auto insurance company and have them help
- Risk it and not get insurance – this can not only wind up with you in jail, but you will have to pay for damages out of your pocket.
- File the claim once you get back across the border – you must be in Mexico when you file your claim or the insurance company may not honor the claim.