New Jersey DUI

1
DarrenMower/Getty Images
Bankrate Logo

Why you can trust Bankrate

While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation for .

When you apply for car insurance coverage, your driving history is used to help determine the premium you will pay. Having a clean driving record without tickets or accidents is one way to get better car insurance rates.

Getting convicted of a DUI can cause major changes to your car insurance. Here are some of the consequences you can face if you get convicted of a DUI in New Jersey.

How does a DUI affect your insurance rate?

Your driving record is just one piece of the puzzle car insurance companies use to determine your risk. Things like tickets and at-fault accidents can make you a high-risk driver, especially if convicted of a DUI.

The chart below shows just how much your car insurance premiums can be affected. Nationally, rates increase on average by 99% once a DUI is on your record. If you get a DUI in New Jersey, your rates can increase by an average of 86%, which is not as high but still a significant jump in out-of-pocket costs.

National vs state average rates with DUI

Pre-DUI Post DUI Percent increase
National $1,674 $3,336 99%
New Jersey $1,757 $3,264 86%

How much does it cost for insurance after a DUI in New Jersey?

Each car insurance provider in New Jersey has different rate structures, which means the rate isn’t always the same from company to company. The charts below show the average minimum and full coverage rates for drivers in New Jersey, before and after a DUI conviction.

New Jersey provider rates with DUI for minimum coverage

Provider Average minimum coverage rate Minimum coverage rate with DUI
Allstate $909 $1,985
American Independent $1,463 $2,391
Amica $430 $1,146
Farmers $1,359 $1,565
Geico $559 $987
Mercury $1,022 $1,580
MetLife $795 $2,182
NJM $370 $409
Palisades $528 $859
Penn National $970 $2,292
Progressive $735 $850
Selective $474 $762
State Farm $724 $2,796
The Hanover $2,123 $3,461
Tower Grp $1,087 $2,471
Travelers $703 $1,219

New Jersey provider rates with DUI for full coverage

Provider Average full coverage rate Full coverage rate with DUI
Allstate $1,686 $3,736
American Independent $3,414 $4,732
Amica $1,504 $4,632
Farmers $2,803 $3,450
Geico $1,316 $2,274
Mercury $1,845 $2,781
MetLife $1,307 $3,853
NJM $1,271 $1,429
Palisades $1,135 $1,958
Penn National $1,820 $4,101
Progressive $1,469 $1,720
Selective $1,085 $1,790
State Farm $1,244 $4,793
The Hanover $4,638 $7,138
Tower Grp $2,010 $5,017
Travelers $1,320 $2,336

Other New Jersey DUI Consequences

Though high insurance premiums are one consequence of getting a DUI in New Jersey, it’s not the only way you’ll be affected. A DUI can cost as much as $20,000 or more when you factor in fines, fees, jail time, missed time from work for court, license suspenses and more.

Drivers convicted of DUI, DWI or who refuse a field sobriety test in New Jersey will have to pay an annual surcharge on their insurance for three years. The surcharge is $3,000, or $1,000 annually, for the first offense. If convicted a second or more, the surcharge is $1,500 per year or $4,500 total.

If an adult refuses the field sobriety test, their license can be suspended up to a year and up to $500 in fines.

DUI First Offense

Like many states in the country, New Jersey takes DUI and DWI seriously, even for the first offense. The severity of the repercussions you will face depend on how intoxicated you are, where you’re driving and your age.

Drivers under the age of 21 cannot have a blood alcohol content of 0.01% or more. If convicted with a BAC of 0.01% to 0.08%, an underage driver will face:

  • License suspension up to 90 days
  • Up to 30 days of community service
  • Must participate in and complete a treatment program before license is reinstated

For adults with a first offense, you could face:

  • Jail time: Up to 30 days
  • Fines: Up to $400 or up to $500 if BAC is higher than 0.10%, $100 victim’s fund fee and Alcohol Education and Rehabilitation Fund, $75 to Neighborhood Services Fund
  • Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC) Program: 6 hours per day for 2 consecutive days
  • License suspension: 3 months or up to a year if BAC is higher than 0.10%
  • Ignition Interlock Device: 3 months or 7 months if BAC is higher than 0.10%, up to 15 months if 0.15% or higher
  • Driving with passenger under 18: Charged with Disorderly Persons offense, community service and longer license suspension
  • If within 1,000 feet of school zone: Up to $800 fine, 2 months in jail, 2 year license suspension

DUI Second Offense

If a second offense happens more than 10 years after the first offense charge date, it is treated like a first offense. If it happens within 10 years of the first, here’s what you can expect:

  • Jail time: Up to 90 days
  • Fines: Up to $1,000 plus court fees, victim’s and reeducation funds and surcharge from first offense
  • Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC) Program: Minimum of 12 hours or complete full program
  • License suspension: 2 years
  • Ignition Interlock Device: Duration of license suspension plus up to 4 years after restored
  • Community service: 30 days
  • Driving with passenger under 18: Same as first offense but with more hours and longer license suspension, determined by judge
  • If within 1,000 feet of school zone: Up to $2,000 fine, 4 years license suspension, 180 days in jail, 60 days community service

DUI Third Offense

If a third offense occurs after the 10 year window, it will be treated as a second offense. If not, here is what a third offense could look like:

  • Jail time: Up to 180 days (could be reduced to 90 if participating in rehab approved by IDRC)
  • Fines: Up to $1,000 plus court fees, victim’s and reeducation funds and surcharge from first offense
  • Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC) Program: Minimum of 12 hours or complete full program
  • License suspension: 8 to 10 years
  • Ignition Interlock Device: Duration of license suspension plus up to 4 years after restored
  • Community service: 30 days
  • Driving with passenger under 18: Same as first offense but with more hours and longer license suspension, determined by judge
  • If within 1,000 feet of school zone: $2,000 fine, 20 years license suspension, 180 days in jail, 60 days community service

FAQ

What is the penalty for DUI in New Jersey?

The penalties for DUI in New Jersey are different depending on which offense it is, whether or not you were near a school zone and how high your BAC was the time of being charged. If you refuse the field sobriety test, it is an automatic year suspension of your license and up to $500 in fines.

Is jail time mandatory for 1st DUI in NJ?

Jail time is not mandatory, though is often given for a first offense for DUI in New Jersey. Community service and participation in IDRC could be considered an alternative, but it’s up to the judge.

Does a DUI ever go away in NJ?

Unlike other states, New Jersey does not charge you criminally with a misdemeanor or felony for DUI. This means that you won’t have a criminal record, but a DUI does stay on your driving record forever in NJ.

How do I get my license back after a DUI in NJ?

Penalties and fees will have to be paid prior to reinstating your driver’s license in New Jersey. This includes a $100 restoration fee plus proof of payment for any outstanding fines or tickets. If your license expired while suspended, you will have to follow normal license renewal procedures to get a new license.

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a DUI, good credit and the following full coverage limits:

  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $50,000 property damage liability per accident
  • $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
  • $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
  • $500 collision deductible
  • $500 comprehensive deductible

To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our sample drivers own a 2019 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.

*DUI qualifies as > .08 BAC

These are sample rates and should be used for comparative purposes only. Your quotes may be different.

Written by
Mandy Sleight
Insurance Contributor
Mandy Sleight has been a licensed insurance agent since 2005. She has three years of experience writing for insurance websites such as Bankrate.com, MoneyGeek and The Simple Dollar. Mandy writes about auto, homeowners, renters, life insurance, disability and supplemental insurance products.