New Jersey Car Insurance
It’s important to have car insurance in New Jersey because it protects your financial interests if you are involved in a traffic accident or fall victim to theft or vandalism. To protect the other party involved in an accident that you are at fault for, the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance requires drivers to have liability insurance. To protect you and your passengers, the department requires you to have uninsured motorist coverage and personal injury protection.
Required Coverages in New Jersey:
- Bodily Injury Liability Per Person: $15,000
- Bodily Injury Liability Per Accident: $30,000
- Property Damage Liability: $5,000
- Uninsured Motorist Coverage Per Person: $15,000
- Personal Injury Protection Coverage Per Person: $15,000
To ensure compliance with the minimum insurance requirements, drivers who are caught without insurance will face punishments such as fines, imprisonment, and driver’s license suspension. The penalties become more severe the higher the number of offenses you have, as well as the severity of the offense.
Determining Your Rate in New Jersey
The Insurance Information Institute (III) provides statistics about insurance rates throughout the nation. According to III, the overall average cost for liability insurance in the U.S. is $474, but the average cost of liability insurance in New Jersey is $745, making it one of the most expensive states in the country for auto insurance. However, what you actually pay may be different from the state average because companies use a number of factors to determine car insurance rates in New Jersey, including your marital status, age, sex, location, vehicle use, vehicle type, driving record, and credit score.
Studies conducted by federal and state departments of transportation, motor vehicles, and safety, as well as organizations such as the Insurance Research Council and multiple universities, continue to be conducted to evaluate drivers based on these factors. This information is then used by insurance companies in New Jersey to determine the level of risk you are to insure. High-risk factors, such as several infractions on a driving record, a low credit score, driving a high-performance vehicle, and living in an area with a large number of traffic accidents result in costlier insurance rates.
Shopping for car insurance in New Jersey can be intimidating, so to give you an idea of what to expect, the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance provides a premium comparison guide, which will allow you to see what kind of rates are offered by several insurance companies in New Jersey. The department also provides a purchasing planner that can help you determine what coverage is best for you.