Q&As with Louis Niedelman regarding Motor Vehicle Insurance in New Jersey

“If you have a registered vehicle on the road in New Jersey, must you have motor vehicle insurance?”

Yes. New Jersey requires that all registered motor vehicles using the highways of this state must have insurance through a Standard policy. There is a less expensive policy called a Basic policy that has limited protections so you should check with your insurance agent to discuss this. The minimum required liability insurance policy limits  for a Standard policy are $15,000 per person and $30,000 aggregate for each accident. Of course, you may choose higher policy limits at an additional cost.  

“If you give consent to a friend or relative to operate your motor vehicle and that person is in an accident, will your vehicle insurance insure that person and others who claim physical injury or physical damage from this accident?”

Yes. So long as you have given permission to that person to operate your vehicle, that person is considered  insured under your vehicle’s insurance policy. Conversely, if your vehicle is used without your permission,  let’s say stolen, and that person is involved in an accident, your insurance would not extend to claims arising  from that accident.

“What is the difference between “verbal threshold” and “non-verbal threshold”?

When you choose “verbal threshold” within your auto policy, this means that you can only make a claim for serious injuries from an accident. Such injuries include fractures and permanent loss of a bodily function. If you choose the “non-verbal threshold” you may make a claim for any injuries, even minor injuries. The premium cost for the “non-verbal threshold choice” is greater than the “verbal threshold” choice.