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Q

What is the penalty for driving with an expired insurance card in NJ? I have insurance but my temporary card is expired and I never received the permanent card.


A

It appears you were cited for Failure to Exhibit Insurance Card. This is under NJ motor vehicle statute 39:3-29 which states that the driver's license, the registration certificate of a motor vehicle and an insurance identification card shall be in the possession of the driver or operator at all times when he is in charge of a motor vehicle on the highways of this State.

The statute goes on to say that if a person charged with a violation of this section can exhibit his driver's license, insurance identification card and registration certificate, which were valid on the day he was charged, to the judge of the municipal court before whom he is summoned to answer to the charge, such judge may dismiss the charge. However, the judge may impose court costs.

From our research the fine for this ticket seems to be around $150 to $180, the higher amount might be including court costs. I would suggest contacting your insurance provider and obtaining your permanent insurance card and perhaps even a letter from the insurance company stating that your insurance was in effect the date on which you received the ticket.

Take this letter from your insurer, your driver's license, insurance card and registration card with you to court and see if the judge will dismiss the ticket. The wording of the statute is that the judge "may" dismiss the charge so it is up to their discretion and thus the more proof you have of your insurance being in effect on the date of the citation, the more likely it seems you could convince the judge to dismiss the charge.

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