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Insure Yourself & Rest Easy

by Erin May

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It is highly recommended that you purchase vehicle, travel/health and home insurance when vacationing and living in Mexico.  

The insurance services and companies you insure with are the most important decisions you will make while vacationing and living in Mexico.

Choosing a financially strong & stable insurance company is wisest, even though they may cost you more. [hr]

What to look for in an Accredited Insurance Company 

  • Ensure the Insurance company underwriting your policy is financially sound. 

  • Ensure the broker you work with is licensed and that there is transparency of the policies they offer.  Go online and check them out or inquire on their customer service structure should you require to make a claim.  Also, it is important to go through the fine print of your policy thoroughly and discuss any questions you have with your broker.

Vehicle Insurance

 Driving a vehicle that is improperly insured can cost you a lot of money and at worst case scenario, land you in Mexican jail should you become involved in an accident, whether it is your fault or not.  Canadian or U.S. auto insurance, however comprehensive, will not be accepted in Mexico and have no legal or force within the country.  Additionally, your home auto insurance company will not settle any claim resulting in a situation over the border.   

Mexican Law mandates that only insurance companies licensed in Mexico can provide the type of auto insurance coverage that is recognized and accepted in Mexico’s legal system.  This same law also stipulates that liability insurance must be purchased from a licensed Mexican company, so your auto insurance policy necessarily needs to be issued by one of Mexico’s insurance companies, or through a broker in the U.S./Canada working in conjunction with a Mexican insurance company. 

Although all insurance policies are sold through Brokers, the actual insurance company underwriting your policy is more important than the Broker who sells you the policy.  The insurance company is who you can fully rely on to handle any claims you incur in Mexico.

It is important to know which insurance companies are underwriting the policies being sold to you through your Broker. 

When purchasing auto insurance be sure to check that your policy covers personal liability as well as legal counsel and ‘bail bond’.  You will be detained in Mexico should you become involved in a serious accident where the police are involved.  Your insurance must include these factors to assist you in this situation. 

Make sure your broker and insurance company provides local support services such as English-speaking agents should you require assistance.  In Mexico, this is typically handled by an Insurance Assessor.

Read more about good vehicle insurance companies to check out in our ‘How To’ article How to Drive to Mexico – Post Departure Checklist

Travel & Health Insurance 

Check to see if your insurance carrier will pay for medical care in Mexico. Otherwise, you can purchase extended medical coverage. Short-term policies exist for trips between 4-14 days. Frequent travelers or longer-term visitors should consider policies for 1, 3 and 5 years.  Travel insurance is insurance that is intended to cover medical expenses, financial default of travel suppliers, and other losses incurred while traveling, either within one’s own country, or internationally. Temporary travel insurance can usually be arranged at the time of the booking of a trip to cover exactly the duration of that trip, or a “multi-trip” policy can cover an unlimited number of trips within a set time frame. 

You may also want to consider private health insurance in Mexico as there are many companies who deal in private health insurance.  is another thing you may want to consider upon arriving in Mexico. There are many companies dealing in private health insurance. 

Contents Insurance 

Today there are hundreds of thousands of Americans and Canadians owning property in Mexico.  Buying home insurance covers your property and its contents against water and fire damage as well as damages resulting from earthquakes, lightning, storms, explosions, burglary and theft.  Home insurance costs depends on the amount it would cost to replace your home and the additional contents you have insured alongside it. 

Making a Claim in Mexico

The policy documentation should be clear on the steps to take in the event of an accident or incident.   

Should an accident or incident occur, do not wait until you return to your home country to make a claim.  Most policies require you to make a claim while you are in Mexico and won’t process your claim if you wait until your return to Canada or the U.S.

In the event of a serious vehicle accident, the first thing you want to do is contact the insurance company’s help line.  They will be able to dispatch your Insurance Assessor to the scene of the accident and make arrangements for lawyers and/or other services to assist.

Part of the claim procedure involving your vehicle may involve you producing a police report as well as other relevant documentation related to the accident, such as information on repairs made to get your vehicle on the road again. 

If you receive medical assistance while in Mexico, it’s important to attach all your original medical, hospital or dental receipts with your travel insurance claim.

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