Operating a business in New Jersey comes with certain legal obligations around insuring commercial vehicles. Having the proper New Jersey commercial auto insurance coverage protects your company assets and ensures compliance with state motor vehicle regulations.
Failing to follow the rules can lead to fines, suspension of operating licenses, and even potential lawsuits. Stay informed on the minimum liability requirements and additional coverage options, and partner with an expert insurance advisor.
These proactive steps help your organization steer clear of violations while shielding your finances from accidents involving company-owned vehicles.
Consequences of Skirting New Jersey Commercial Auto Regulations
Overlooking the state’s insurance rules exposes your business to substantial penalties.
Fines and Legal Action
The consequences depend on factors such as if you have no insurance versus insufficient coverage. However, penalties may include hefty fines. Legal action can follow if violations continue.
License and Registration Suspension
The state can suspend the driver’s license, vehicle registrations, and temporary tags for those caught driving uninsured vehicles. This hampers both individual employees and overall business operations.
Higher Insurance Rates
A lapse in coverage often leads insurance companies to assign you to a high-risk category. This means paying more in premiums due to the perceived likelihood of future violations or claims.
Word travels quickly within industries, and clients won’t look kindly on contractors skirting laws that keep roadways safe. Violations signal irresponsibility and can prevent landing jobs.
Meeting Liability Requirements with Commercial Auto Policies
Carrying adequate coverage is essential for every New Jersey business that owns vehicles driven for commercial purposes. Liability protection is the minimum legal requirement:
Bodily Injury and Property Damage
Motor vehicle liability insurance includes two components — bodily injury and property damage.
- Bodily injury liability covers injuries that drivers operating your company vehicles cause to other motorists. As of January 1, 2023, New Jersey requires minimum limits of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident. These limits are expected to increase to $35,000 per person and $70,000 per accident at the beginning of 2026.
- Property damage liability helps pay for property your business damages in a crash, such as buildings, signs, barriers, and vehicles belonging to others. The state minimum property damage limit is $25,000 per accident.
Without these coverages, your enterprise must pay these costs out-of-pocket, which could force small businesses into bankruptcy.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Protection
This coverage defends your business if one of your vehicles gets hit by:
- An uninsured driver who causes bodily injury and property damage but cannot cover the costs.
- An at-fault motorist who does not carry enough liability insurance to pay for all damages.
Having your own uninsured and underinsured protections means you can submit a claim to your insurance provider instead of chasing down the at-fault driver.
Complying Through Personal Injury Protection
Personal injury protection (PIP) takes the compliance conversation a step further by providing medical coverage after accidents.
PIP Benefits Everyone in the Vehicle
Personal injury protection is a no-fault add-on, meaning all parties collect benefits from their respective insurers, regardless of who was at fault. Common PIP disbursements cover medical treatment, lost wages, essential services, and funeral costs.
Mandated in New Jersey
Under New Jersey state law, all auto insurance policies must contain PIP with minimum benefit limits of $15,000 per person.
Avoiding Severe Injuries Without PIP
While liability coverage helps compensate for costs you cause others, PIP allows collecting funds for injuries and expenses your own vehicle occupants incur after a crash. Lacking this protection means paying these bills outright. For severe injuries, this financial setback could devastate your business.
Using Additional Coverages for Continued New Jersey Regulatory Compliance
Liability and PIP only partially address New Jersey’s auto insurance requirements. Collisions, accidents caused by nature, and other unforeseen events also threaten regulatory adherence.
Repairing Vehicles to Get Back on the Road
Collision coverage helps pay repair bills when your commercial fleet vehicles get damaged by hitting other cars or objects. Comprehensive protection does the same for non-collision damage such as hail, floods, fallen trees, theft, and vandalism. Keeping cars, vans, and trucks functional preserves your ability to operate legally.
Towing for Prompt Assistance
Having New Jersey commercial auto insurance with towing coverage provides fast roadside assistance if vehicles break down while performing job duties. Quick towing minimizes work disruptions that could otherwise affect legal compliance if operations lag.
The Road Ahead with JMG Insurance Agency
Staying on top of New Jersey’s commercial auto insurance rules takes ongoing effort but pays dividends for your business. Partnering with an expert insurance advisor provides customized guidance to meet liability minimums, select right-fit additional coverages, and make timely adjustments that support continued regulatory compliance.
Prioritizing these proactive measures reduces risk so you can focus on daily operations with confidence instead of worrying about penalties down the road. JMG Insurance Agency offers customized guidance for New Jersey commercial auto insurance compliance.
We take pride in equipping businesses to prevent violations that lead to fines, business disruptions, and financial loss. Contact us today at 1-844-304-7332 or online for a consultation to discuss coverage options tailored to your unique contracting, delivery, transportation, or service enterprise.