new jersey driver information
Having the right car insurance is only part of becoming a savvy New Jersey driver. That's why we compiled a convenient guide to the driving laws and stats that'll help you motor the Garden State with confidence.
New Jersey driving facts, stats, and laws
Number of licensed drivers: 5,924,000
Registered vehicles: 6,114,000
Licensing and registration authority: Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC)
New Jersey driving record points
The state applies different points to driving records for different traffic violations. Points per incident can vary between 2 and 8, but the majority of incidents result in a 2-point penalty. See how NJ penalizes certain traffic violations here.
If you have 12 points on your driving record, your license could be suspended.
Driving under the influence (DUIs)
A blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher is considered above the legal limit, which can lead to a DUI. DUI penalties include fines, jail sentences, community service, possible ignition interlock device installation, and a license suspension. A BAC of 0.10 or higher results in stricter penalties. Penalties after a DUI conviction depend on the driver's BAC level and any prior DUIs.
Distracted driving in New Jersey
NJ drivers are banned from using handheld cell phones to talk or text while driving. It's a primary law in New Jersey, which means you can be pulled over and penalized without committing any other offense (like speeding).
Reporting car accidents in New Jersey
New Jersey law requires you to report all accidents to the police that result in injuries, death, or $500 or more of vehicle/property damage. If the police don't come to the scene to take an accident report, you're required to file a written report with the Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) within 10 days.
Moving to New Jersey
If you plan on living in New Jersey for 6 months or more, you'll need to get a New Jersey drivers license and register your car. Becoming a licensed driver in New Jersey can be complicated. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- You have 60 days after the move or before your current license expires to get your New Jersey license
- You will need to pass the 6-Point ID Verification test to prove your identity
- Whether you have to take a written or driving test depends on your prior state's license validity and whether or not it was non-provisional
Visit the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission for specific details.
Drivers in the military
If you're an active military member, your license, registration, and inspection sticker will stay valid until you're discharged. When that happens, you have 2 weeks to renew everything.
You can print a copy of the military extension letter for New Jersey drivers here (PDF). Keep a copy of it in your vehicle.
According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau's 2011 data, the top 10 stolen cars in New Jersey were:
- 1994 Honda Accord
- 1997 Honda Civic
- 2000 Dodge Caravan
- 1991 Toyota Camry
- 2006 Ford Pickup (full size)
- 1994 Jeep Grand Cherokee
- 2005 Nissan Altima
- 1997 Nissan Maxima
- 1994 Acura Integra
- 2000 Jeep Cherokee
Young driver requirements
First-time drivers who are younger than 18 will need to go through New Jersey's graduated licensing program.
Graduated licensing in NJ
- Minimum permit age: 16 years old
- Minimum holding period: 6 months
- Probationary license age: 17 years old
- Unsupervised driving: You must have at least one year of unsupervised driving experience before applying for your full NJ drivers license
- Minimum age restrictions lifted: 18 years old
New Jersey's MVC
The NJ Motor Vehicle Commission has a website for all your licensing and vehicle registration needs.
Car insurance in New Jersey
Find out about the legal requirements and Esurance perks available in NJ.
Avoid car theft for lower premiums
Let us give you some tips on keeping your NJ car out of the hands of others. It might just get you a car insurance discount, too.