New Jersey Car Insurance Rules & Laws: Motorist Protection Is A Must
The state of New Jersey is located in the northeastern Atlantic region of the United States with some of its territory extending up to the middle part of the same region. It has a population of nearly 9 million people according to a recent research conducted by the U.S. Census as of the late 2010. This high number of people necessarily indicates a huge number of car and vehicle owners in the said state. This huge volume of vehicles is the main reason for several amendments with regard to the car insurance requirements, rules and laws currently governing New Jersey. Thus, these requirements, laws and rules differ from other states.
There is no excuse for not having at least the minimum car insurance coverage in New Jersey or anywhere else in the United States. If you are ever caught without evidence of car insurance coverage whether you figure in an accident or not, you will be slapped with the corresponding penalties. These penalties are worse if you cause an accident and are found to be deficient in your liability protection. The fines imposed in New Jersey for vehicle owners without proof of auto insurance coverage is quite steeper than those of other states. There is a fine of up to about $1000 for those who cannot produce proof of auto insurance – this is just for the first offense. Other penalties could include suspension or revocation of license, community service, and jail time. The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) would be able to give you a listing of all the requirements to drive a vehicle in the state as well as the corresponding penalties that would be imposed if these requirements are not complied with.
Although auto insurance premium rates are higher in New Jersey, there really is not much you can do about it but to scout around for the lowest rates that you can get. The average premium rate in the state is about $1000 more than the national average auto insurance premium rate. The minimum coverages required in New Jersey are lower than those required in other state. The mandatory basic coverage is a 15/30/5 cover. Only a minimum of $15,000 is required as coverage for bodily injury or death of another person. Up to two persons could be covered by this minimum amount or up to a maximum of $3000. On the other hand, property damage liability minimum coverage is held at $5000. Aside from the basic coverage, there is also a mandatory personal injury protection coverage required for New Jersey motorists. A minimum of $15,000 in personal injury protection coverage is set to help cover reasonable and necessary expenses relating to medical treatment for the driver and his passengers in case of a vehicular accident. An uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage is likewise required in the amount of at least $15,000 per person up to a maximum of $30,000 per accident for expenses towards treatment of bodily injury resulting from an accident caused by a driver who is uninsured or is underinsured. As New Jersey invokes a Choice No-Fault system, any driver has the option to either take the no-fault system options or take his accident claim in court in case of injuries sustained in vehicular accidents. You can find out what these options are when you consult with the New Jersey MVC. Finding the right coverage for you would be easy enough with the large number of car insurers that you can choose from.
There are several New Jersey Car Insurance requirements being observed today and these are:
• A New Jersey Insurance Identification Card issued only in New Jersey.
• The credit standing should be a good basis of being able to pay $2,000 up to $3,000 of insurance premium every year.
• Proof of New Jersey Residence or any similar document.
• Proof of Ownership of the car insured.
The New Jersey state adheres to the so called "Choice No-Fault" system. This is in fact a combination of the no-fault system and the torts system. Car owners and drivers alike can choose between disregarding the no-fault system and going after the one who caused the injury, an action done in a torts based system. This is true with regard to automobile related injuries, accidents and damages arising from such automobiles.
New Jersey also mandates that every vehicle within its jurisdiction is insured. Thus, uninsured vehicles and cars that are involved in accidents and damages to properties may cause inconvenience for the car owner. Examples of such inconveniences include fines, license suspensions, surcharges for the unpaid insurance policies and even community services. If you are a resident of NJ then it is recommended that you insure any and all of your cars as soon as possible.
Insurance companies based in New Jersey usually give the NJIIC or New Jersey Insurance Identification Card. Such ID is given per car or automobile insured indicating the insurance policy number. It must be presented at all times during accidents, inspections, checkpoints, violations and the like. Inability to present such card when asked for by persons in authority will surely result in fines. Thus, make sure to keep such ID handy, preferably on the car itself in order to avoid any hassle or inconvenience in the future.
New Jersey Department of Insurance
- 20 West State Street, Trenton, NJ 08625
- Phone: (609) 292-7272
New Jersey Department of Transportation
- 1035 Parkway Avenue, Trenton, NJ 08618
- Phone: (609) 292-6500