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What are state minimums for car insurance in New Jersey?

Things to remember...

  • New Jersey’s minimum auto insurance requirements include components for liability, personal injury, and uninsured motorists
  • Drivers in New Jersey can choose between a basic insurance plan and a standard auto insurance plan
  • Fines, imprisonment, and other hefty consequences are possible if drivers are caught driving without the minimum amount of car insurance in place in New Jersey

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Drivers in New Jersey are required to have a minimum amount of car insurance at all times, and driving without car insurance can be expensive and risky. However, you may be wondering why the state requires its drivers to buy car insurance.

New Jersey is one of the few states that requires drivers to purchase liability, personal injury, and uninsured motorist coverages, and there is a solid reason for each of these requirements.

For example, New Jersey requires liability coverage so that drivers have the means to take financial responsibility for damages they cause to other people while they are driving.

Keep in mind that any damages that you incur personally or that other people incur because of your actions are ultimately your responsibility to pay for.

If you do not have the right type of coverage or high enough coverage limits, you may have to pay out-of-pocket.

Because some accidents may cost tens of thousands of dollars or more, it is not feasible for many of the drivers in this state to pay for all of the expenses associated with an accident out of their own pocket.

Compare car insurance quotes to find the best coverage for the best rate. Enter your ZIP code into our free rate tool above to get started.

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How to Read Car Insurance Requirements

New Jersey drivers should review and update their car insurance coverage every six months. However, before you take this critical step, you need to learn more about the types of coverage available and how they differ from each other.

These are some of the required and optional auto insurance types that you may find when you request a quote for new coverage in New Jersey:

  • Bodily Injury Liability – New Jersey drivers are required to buy a minimum amount of bodily injury liability insurance. This type of coverage pays for the medical expenses others incur if you cause an injury accident.
  • Personal Injury Protection (PIP)/Medical Payments – New Jersey drivers are also required to buy personal injury protection coverage. This insurance component pays for your own medical expenses if you are injured in an accident.
  • Property Damage Liability – Property damage insurance is also a New Jersey requirement, and this coverage pays for any repairs or replacements for personal property or vehicles belonging to other people that you damage.
  • Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist – New Jersey drivers must also purchase insurance for uninsured or underinsured motorists. This pays for your own expenses if you are hit by an uninsured or underinsured motorist or if you are involved in a hit and run accident.
  • Collision – Collision insurance is optional for many drivers, but some auto lenders require it. This coverage pays for your vehicle repairs or for a full replacement if it is damaged in a collision.
  • Comprehensive – This is also an optional type of coverage, but it may be required by some auto lenders. This coverage pays for your vehicle repairs or for a full replacement if the car is damaged in a collision with an animal, in a fire, by theft, through criminal activity, and more.

If you have never shopped for New Jersey auto insurance quotes, it is important to understand how the coverage may be quoted to you.

Typically, a dollar amount will be assigned to each coverage type that you purchase, and this dollar amount is the maximum amount of benefits the insurance company will pay out on a claim.

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Minimum Coverage for New Jersey

New Jersey drivers are required to purchase more auto insurance than many other drivers in different states, but there may be some benefit associated with this.

After all, coverage requirements in some states are so low or minimal that drivers often purchase more than the minimum requirements to enjoy the full benefit that auto insurance can provide.

New Jersey drivers must purchase minimum coverage of:

  • $5,000 for property damage liability
  • $15,000 for personal injury protection
  • $25,000 for very serious injuries

The above requirements are for a basic insurance policy, but New Jersey drivers may also choose to purchase a standard insurance policy. Standard insurance in New Jersey features:

  • $5,000 for property damage liability
  • $15,000 per person or $30,000 per incident for bodily injury liability
  • $15,000 for personal injury protection
  • $250,000 for very serious injuries

Keep in mind that these basic and standard insurance options are for personal-use vehicles. In the event that you have a stored classic car, a commercial vehicle, or another type of vehicle, other insurance requirements may apply.

Penalties for Not Being Properly Insured

The most common way New Jersey law enforcement officials will determine if you are in compliance with the auto insurance requirement is when they pull you over for another matter and review your coverage.

If you are caught driving without the proper amount and type of coverage per state law, you may lose your license or registration, be fined, and face other significant penalties.

Minimum Requirement vs. Recommended Coverage

It makes sense for some drivers to purchase the minimum amount of coverage and to save money on their premium.

However, because you are responsible for any expenses that are not covered by your auto insurance policy, you may consider buying more than the minimum required coverage.

For example, even if comprehensive insurance is not required, you may still buy it so that you have the financial means to pay for your own vehicle’s repair bills.

Buying New Jersey Car Insurance

Buying New Jersey car insurance is not a matter to take lightly. The premium will affect your regular budget, and the coverage will affect your expenses if you need to file a claim.

At a minimum, you need to purchase the state’s legally required coverage types and limits.

Requesting a quote online is a wonderful way to save time and effort as you prepare to buy new coverage.

Ideally, drivers will shop for new auto insurance quotes in New Jersey every six months. Be sure to find auto providers that have a wonderful reputation for having hassle-free claims, friendly service, and great rates.

When you focus your attention on finding great companies to request quotes from first, you can most easily find great prices on the coverage you need from a reputable provider. Enter your ZIP code below to get quotes now!


  1. http://www.iii.org/article/what-covered-basic-auto-insurance-policy
  2. https://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-uninsured-motorists
  3. http://www.360financialliteracy.org/Topics/Insurance/Cars-Auto-Insurance/State-by-State-Minimum-Coverage-Requirements
  4. http://www.nj.gov/dobi/division_consumers/insurance/basicpolicy.shtml
  5. http://www.iii.org/article/eight-auto-insurance-myths

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