The state of New Jersey has laws on the books that are designed to keep people safe while on the road. Some of these laws require drivers to maintain valid auto insurance, and they are intended to protect people's financial best interests. These laws also keep the courts from being flooded with car accident cases. At any rate, most drivers in New Jersey have valid liability auto insurance, but not all of them are required to do so. Many have policies that just barely meet the minimum requires while others have more extensive coverage.
Why would any New Jersey resident opt to buy more insurance than is required by law? The minimum requirements fall far short of completely covering the financial repercussions of the typical accident. If the limits of a car insurance policy are exceeded, the driver must then find a way to make up the difference. This point is further driven home by the fact that millions of people are on the road in the Garden State. By learning a little about driving statistics in New Jersey, people can quickly see why it's so important to maintain high-quality coverage at all times.
Who Drives in New Jersey?
According to the United States Census Bureau, the estimated population of the state of New Jersey in 2012 was 8,864,590. The Census Bureau doesn't keep track of driving statistics, but the Federal Highway Administrationdoes. According to that agency, there were 5,977,458 licensed drivers in New Jersey in November 2012, so 67.4 percent of all residents are legally able to drive. As far as gender goes, 2,934,896 people, or 49.1 percent of all drivers, were men. 3,042,562 people, or 50.9 percent of all drivers, were women.
It wouldn't be fair for insurance providers to use gender as a basis for determining car insurance premiums, so they don't. They are perfectly within their rights to consider drivers' ages, though, and they most certainly do. They assume more risk by insuring younger, less experienced drivers, so they charge higher premiums in such cases. In New Jersey in November 2012, 99,374 people, or 1.7 percent of all licensed drivers, were aged 19 and below. The largest group, which consisted of drivers between the ages of 50 and 54, totaled 307,396 and accounted for 5.1 percent of all licensed drivers in the Garden State.
Auto Insurance Requirements in New Jersey
It is smart for drivers to be aware of the minimum car insurance requirements for the state of New Jersey, but they shouldn't stop with those basics. Most people opt for more extensive coverage in order to protect themselves as fully as possible.
Drivers in New Jersey can opt for basic liability insurance or standard liability insurance. The requirements for basic insurance are very simple and fall far short of truly protecting anyone. Such policies must have at least $10,000 in coverage for accidents involving two or more people and at least $5,000 in property damage coverage.
The minimum requirements for standard liability car insurance in New Jersey are:
- At least $15,000 in bodily injury coverage for one person
- At least $30,000 in bodily injury coverage for two or more people
- At least $5,000 in property damage coverage
- At least $15,000 in Personal Injury Protection, or PIP
- At least $15,000 in underinsured and uninsured driver coverage
New Jersey doesn't play around when it comes to enforcing these requirements. For a first offense of driving without valid insurance and not having coverage, a driver faces a fine of $300, a one-year suspension and is ordered to perform community service. For a second offense, a driver faces a fine of $500, a two-year suspension, up to 14 days in jail and at least 30 days of community service.
Most people are conscientious about maintaining valid car insurance in New Jersey. Meeting the legal requirements isn't enough, though. Drivers should collect auto insurance quotes in New Jersey to find great deals on policies that provide better coverage.