Is my credit score a factor when obtaining car insurance in New Mexico?
Yes. Only three states prohibit car insurance companies from considering your credit score when determining how much to charge you for coverage. New Mexico isn’t one of them (they’re California, Hawaii, and Massachusetts, by the way). Lots of factors affect your offer, but your credit score plays a role. Higher scores help get a lower premium, and lower scores contribute to a higher premium.
Does New Mexico offer a good-driver discount?
Most car insurance companies licensed in New Mexico offer good-driver discounts. They’re a way to attract desirable customers and incentivize careful driving, and they’re great for consumers, too! Ask your carrier if they offer this and what it takes to earn it. Typically, it’s 3 or 5 years without an accident, and often without a ticket for a moving violation, either.
- Full Pay
- Multiple Car
- Multiple Policy
- Good Student
- Resident Student
- Accident Free
- Vehicle Safety
- Anti-Lock Brake
- Anti-Theft Device
- Home Ownership
- New Car
- Passive Restraint
- Utility Discount
Does New Mexico allow the use of digital insurance cards?
Unfortunately, as of this writing, New Mexico is one of the last few remaining holdouts in this respect. It does not allow you to show proof of coverage with a digital insurance card on your mobile device. For now, you’ll need to make sure your official printed insurance card is in your vehicle at all times.
What happens if my coverage lapses?
New Mexico uses an automated system called the Insurance Identification Database that cross-checks vehicles registered with the MVD with insurance company records. That means you don’t have to be pulled over and asked for proof of coverage to get caught driving without insurance. If your coverage lapses or is canceled, or you just don’t buy it, your vehicle registration will be suspended. To have it reinstated, you must show proof that you obtained coverage and pay a reinstatement fee ($30 as of this writing). Failure to produce proof of coverage or to turn in your license plate within the allotted time may result in further consequences, including criminal penalties.
What are New Mexico's blood alcohol concentration (BAC) percentage limits under the state's driving under the influence (DUI) laws?
It’s against the law to operate a motor vehicle in New Mexico at the following BAC percentages:
.08%+ at 21 years old or older
.04%+ for commercial vehicle drivers
.02%+ at under 21 years old
In New Mexico, you can be convicted of driving while intoxicated (DWI) even if your blood-alcohol content level is below these levels. All it takes is for your ability to drive to be even slightly impaired by drugs or alcohol.
What are the chemical test refusal penalties in New Mexico?
As is now the norm across most of the U.S., New Mexico has an implied consent law regarding blood, urine, and breath tests to ascertain impairment. That means you’re considered to have consented to chemical tests simply by having acquired a driver’s license. Refusing the test results in immediate revocation of your driving privileges for 1 year.
What are the consequences of being convicted of a DUI?
A variety of considerations affect DWI penalties, the biggest being how many prior offenses are on your record. In New Mexico, DWI convictions remain on your record for 55 years. Having a particularly high BAC, causing an accident, causing injuries or death, having an open alcohol container or drugs in your vehicle, and driving with a minor are some examples of aggravating factors that may increase penalties.
A first-time DWI offender’s driver’s license is revoked for up to 1 year (this increases by one year for each subsequent offense, until the fourth, at which point driving privileges are lost permanently). They also face significant fines and fees, compulsory completion of a drug and alcohol treatment course, mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device at their own expense, and possible jail time.
Does New Mexico offer driver improvement courses to reduce my insurance premium?
New Mexico doesn’t have official rules or regulations about this, but it’s common practice for carriers to reward voluntary completion of a defensive driving course with a discount. Check with your provider and make sure to find a State-approved class through your local MVD or your county.
Is there any way I can reduce the cost of my New Mexico car insurance?
Sure! People often think of auto insurance as a fixed cost, but there are plenty of ways to get your payments down. For starters, pursue any of the relevant discounts and incentives we cover on this page. Be careful with your driving record and credit score, too, as part of a long-term strategy. You can also pay for a full coverage term upfront to get a better deal than with monthly installments, and choose a higher deductible for a lower premium. But most importantly, when it’s time for a new policy, comparison shop for the best possible quote.