Filing a Car Accident Claim with an Expired Tag in New Jersey

Posted on behalf of Lynch Law Firm on Jul 21, 2021  in Car Accidents News

New Jersey license plateIf you were injured in an accident in New Jersey, but your license plate was expired at the time of the crash, you may be wondering how to go about filing a claim. The insurance company may try to lead you to believe that you are not eligible for compensation, but this may not always be true.

Call our New Jersey auto accident lawyers today to learn about the legal options that may be available to you. We offer a free consultation with no obligation to hire us or take legal action. If you choose to let us represent you during this difficult time, we do not charge you anything while we work on your case and only get paid if you do. There is no risk to you. 

Steps to Take After an Accident with an Expired Tag

Aside from seeking medical treatment for your injuries, one of the most important first steps after an accident while your vehicle’s tag is expired is to renew it as quickly as possible. This may help make the process of filing a claim a little smoother.

After that, you should strongly consider speaking to a licensed attorney who may be able to help you through the complex process of filing a claim and negotiating with the insurance company. Remember that the insurance companies are going to work hard to deny or devalue your claim for any reason they can find.

Can My Insurer Deny My Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Claim?

New Jersey’s no-fault laws require that every driver in the state carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance in case of an accident. PIP insurance helps cover the costs of medical bills no matter who is responsible for the crash, so filing an injury claim with your own insurance is usually one of the first steps after an accident.  

Generally, your PIP insurance may not deny your claim if you were genuinely injured in an auto accident, even if your license plate was expired at the time of the crash. However, they may deny your claim if your policy lapsed or was canceled mid-term.

While the insurance company may cancel your policy for several reasons, an expired tag is not one of them. When the criteria for a mid-term cancellation is met, the insurance company must provide you with at least 15 days’ notice.  

The only reasons your insurer may drop you mid-term is if:

  • Fraud is discovered
  • Your driver’s license is expired
  • You failed to make premium payments

If your PIP insurance tries to deny your claim because your tag was expired, it is important that you speak to a licensed attorney as soon as possible who may be able to help you hold the insurance company accountable for bad faith practices.

Can the At-Fault Driver’s Liability Insurance Deny my Claim?

New Jersey drivers are also required to carry liability insurance for any property damage they cause in an accident. This means that if you are hit by a negligent driver and your vehicle, with an expired tag, is damaged in the crash, the liability insurance should be responsible for paying the cost of repairs.

However, the liability insurance company is mostly interested in protecting their profits, so they may try to devalue or deny your claim by saying that your vehicle’s expired tag makes you partially at fault for the crash, since you should not have been driving.

Fortunately, our attorneys are prepared for arguments like this from the insurance company and are ready to help you fight back against them to recover the compensation you need.

Remember that an expired tag is not what caused the accident. The crash was caused by the other driver’s negligent actions.

What Are the Penalties for an Expired Tag in New Jersey?

As of January 2021, the Motor Vehicle Commission in New Jersey is no longer extending the dates for vehicle registrations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Drivers who fail to renew their vehicle’s registration within 30 days of the expiration date on a tag may be subject to a $100 fine.

If you are involved in an accident while your tag is expired, prepare to be ticketed for the non-moving violation, and do not let it deter you from calling the police at the scene of the accident. Even if the at-fault driver tries to get you to accept a cash payment at the scene.

Let Us Help. Call Today

Our knowledgeable attorneys are prepared to help you through the process of filing a claim and negotiating with the insurance company to recover the compensation you need for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.

Do not fall for the insurance company’s lies regarding your expired vehicle tag. Let us fight for your right to pursue maximum compensation.

Call today for a free consultation: (800) 518-0508  

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