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New Jersey: the worst state for speeding tickets?

No one has a definitive answer for which state is the worst for receiving speeding tickets, but New Jersey often pops up on lists. Perhaps this is because New Jersey is known for aggressive driving, and its police force can be just as aggressive in enforcing the speed limit. Busy New Jersey roads also tend to have a lot of speed traps, and the ticket prices can be steep. So while we may not know whether New Jersey is the absolute worst state for speeding, we do know you’re better off driving safely and avoiding tickets. If the worst does happen and you get a ticket, you’ll want to educate yourself on all the consequences.

How much does a New Jersey speeding ticket cost?

Fines for speeding are universal across New Jersey, but they vary depending on how much you were speeding by. The fine amounts are as follows:

  • Speeding by 1-9 mph: $85
  • Speeding 10-14 mph: $95
  • Speeding by 15-19 mph: $105
  • Speeding by 20-24 mph: $200
  • Speeding by 25-29 mph: $220
  • Speeding by 30-34 mph: $240
  • Speeding by 35-39 mph: $260

You should see the fine amount listed on your speeding ticket.

Special zones and extra fines

In New Jersey, some road areas are designated as Safe Corridors. Safe corridors are road sections that have had high accident and fatality rates in the past. Because these roads have a record of being dangerous, the state hopes to reduce speeding along them. If you are caught speeding in a Safe Corridor or a construction zone, your speeding ticket fine are approximately doubled. The fines for the most common speeding violations are as follows: 

  • Speeding by 1-9 mph over the limit: $140
  • Speeding 10-14 mph: $160
  • Speeding by 15-19 mph: $180

The state also doubles fines if you are caught speeding by 10 mph or more in a 65 mph zone. Essentially, it’s very easy to end up paying a lot of money for a speeding ticket in New Jersey.

When are you required to go to court?

If you get a speeding ticket, you do not necessarily have to go to court. Only higher violations result in a mandatory court date. You will be required to attend court if you are caught speeding by 40 mph or more, or if you are speeding by 20 mph or more in a Safe Corridor or Construction Zone. Otherwise, you only need to go to court if you wish to challenge the ticket.

The New Jersey point system

New Jersey’s system assigns points based on how fast you were speeding. The points work as follows:

  • Speeding by 1-14 mph: 2 points
  • Speeding by 15-29 mph: 4 points
  • Speeding by 30 mph or more: 5 points

If you are a New Jersey driver and receive a speeding ticket in another state, you will receive 2 points on your driving record, regardless of how fast you were driving. Receiving points on your record will almost definitely cause your monthly car insurance premiums to increase. The good news is that 3 points are removed from your record for each complete year you go without a violation.

Point surcharges

In addition to paying more on your insurance, you may have to pay extra fines to the state of New Jersey if you accumulate enough points. If you receive 6 or more points within 3 years, you’ll be required to pay an annual surcharge for 3 years. The surcharge is in addition to the fine of the speeding ticket itself. The surcharge amount is currently $150 for 6 points plus $25 for every additional point. Keep in mind that you’ll have to pay this surcharge for 3 years, so you’ll be paying a minimum of $450 (plus ticket fines) if you reach 6 points.

License suspension

If you accumulate 12 or more points within two years, you will have three options:

  1. have your license suspended,
  2. take the New Jersey Driver Improvement Program, or
  3. request a hearing.

If you simply allow your license to be suspended, the suspension will last for 30 days. Afterwards, you’ll need to pay a $100 fee to reinstate the license. The Driver Improvement Program (DIP) is a course that costs $100. Upon completing it, you will have 3 points removed from your driving record. You will then be in a probationary period for one year. During that period, any violation at all will result in a suspension. If you believe you have a case, you may schedule a hearing, in which a judge will decide whether your license should be suspended.

New Jersey driving programs

If you have fewer than 12 points and want to reduce the points on your record, you can take a defensive driving course. These courses teach techniques for driving safely and avoiding accidents. After completing a course, you will have 2 points removed from your driving record, and you may qualify for lower insurance rates. You can take a defensive driving course once every 5 years.

Paying a New Jersey speeding ticket

If you choose to pay your speeding ticket, you can do so online on the New Jersey Courts website, in person at your municipal court, or through mail by personal check or money order. Keep in mind that paying your ticket amounts to an admission of guilt, and it will result in points being added to your driving record.

Fighting a New Jersey speeding ticket

If you believe you were unfairly charged with speeding, you may wish to contest your speeding ticket. To do this, you will need to attend court and argue your case in front of a judge. You are likely to have the most success in court by hiring a New Jersey traffic lawyer. In most cases, a lawyer will at least be able to negotiate for a smaller violation, resulting in a lower fine and fewer points on your record.

If you are thinking of contesting your ticket, BernieSez can help you to find a local, experienced attorney. On our website, you can post your case for free. New Jersey lawyers will review your post and send you quotes. Then you’ll be able to choose a lawyer who fits your budget without wasting a lot of time searching. We generally recommend hiring a lawyer as the best way to reduce the long-term impact of a speeding ticket.