All automobiles registered in New Jersey require three types of mandatory insurance: (1) Liability Insurance, which pays others for damages that you cause if you are responsible for an accident; (2) Personal Injury Protection ("PIP"), which pays you medical expenses if you or other persons covered under your policy are injured in an automobile accident; and (3) Uninsured Motorist Coverage, which protects you if you are in an accident with someone who doesn’t have proper insurance coverage.
Failure to maintain these insurance coverages can have serious consequences. In addition to criminal sanctions, individuals may be barred from pursuing a civil cause of action for recovery of economic or noneconomic damages sustained as a result of an accident while operating an uninsured automobile. This means that people who are injured while operating uninsured vehicles may be precluded from bringing personal injury lawsuits for their injuries.
Not only is good practice to maintain all appropriate types of automobile insurance coverage, but it is the law. You should review your policy at least annually and discuss the different types and levels of coverage with your insurance broker and/or carrier. This will ensure that you have all legally required coverages, that the levels of coverage are sufficient based on your particular needs and circumstances, and that you will not be precluded from bringing an appropriate personal injury lawsuit if you or other permissive drivers under your policy are injured in an accident.