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New Jersey drivers struggling to make car insurance payments on top of all of life’s other expenses may have a solution in the Special Automobile Insurance Policy (SAIP or NJSAIP), depending on their eligibility. Known as a dollar-a-day program, the SAIP provides drivers with limited coverage below typical state minimum requirements to allow them to drive legally.

Eligibility for New Jersey’s dollar-a-day program depends on a number of factors. But the reality is that many would benefit from such a program or from affordable car insurance premiums. To afford car insurance, many drivers turn to online quote comparisons to find the best policies for them.

Quick Facts
  • New Jersey’s SAIP program covers emergency treatment in the event of an accident.

  • Some enrolled in the federal Medicaid program have eligibility for the NJSAIP program.

  • Car insurance rates are based on a number of factors related to driving profile and history.

What is the dollar-a-day insurance program?

What is the Dollar-a-Day program in New Jersey?

This special program for NJ drivers can help cover medical costs after a car accident.

The New Jersey SAIP from the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance is also known as the dollar-a-day car insurance program. It provides affordable coverage to financially struggling drivers. Underwritten by the National Continental Insurance Company, policies offer minimal coverage that doesn’t meet typical state requirements but allows drivers to continue driving legally in the state.

The SAIP program exists to prevent those struggling financially from driving without car insurance. Though the program doesn’t include liability coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, or personal injury protection required by state minimum guidelines, it offers eligible New Jersey drivers a way to remain insured. The dollar-a-day program costs $365 per year.

Coverage Under the New Jersey Dollar-a-Day Program

CoveredNot Covered
If an accident occurs, emergency treatment for the policyholderAdditional medical treatment beyond brain and spinal cord injuries treatment
As much as $250,000 covered for treatment of brain and spinal cord injuries of the policyholderAny costs related to injuries to the other driver and damages to their property
If a policyholder dies in an accident, their family will receive a $10,000 death benefitPolicyholder vehicle damage

Who is eligible for the New Jersey dollar-a-day program?

The dollar-a-day program is a unique car insurance option for New Jersey drivers.

Eligibility for the New Jersey dollar-a-day program relies on a number of factors. A person must be a resident of New Jersey; must not have a current auto insurance policy; must have a valid ID card, driver’s license, and registration; and must be enrolled in federal Medicaid with hospitalization. This SAIP program, however, doesn’t apply to everyone enrolled in Medicaid.

Some drivers enrolled in the New Jersey dollar-a-day program might lose their qualification for Medicaid during a policy period. If this happens, the SAIP policy will remain in place until it’s up for renewal. Before the policy expires, the driver must look into other insurance quotes and coverage options.

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How do you apply for dollar-a-day coverage?

To apply for the New Jersey dollar-a-day program, applicants must find a local Personal Automobile Insurance Plan (PAIP) producer or call 1 (800) 652-2471. Applicants must bring documents with them to apply, including the driver’s licenses and the Medicaid ID cards of any potential drivers to be covered under the policy, as well as the driver’s vehicle registration.

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How much does a dollar-a-day program really cost?

Though it may be hard to believe, the New Jersey dollar-a-day policy really does just cost a dollar a day. The program costs those enrolled $365 per year in two separate installments. Those who pay the yearly fee up front pay $5 less, $360 a year. The New Jersey SAIP insurance program allows drivers to continue driving their cars legally.

Though the program is very affordable when looking at the yearly cost, it certainly does come with some additional risks. Because the program provides limited coverage that is below the state minimum requirements, car accidents resulting in bodily injury or property damage will likely result in fairly costly bills in the end.

Cheap Car Insurance

Cheap Car Insurance

What to Consider Before Signing Up for the Program

As with all car insurance policy options and programs, you should consider a number of factors before you sign up for the New Jersey SAIP program. With this program in particular, there is a lot to consider. The car insurance coverage provided through the SAIP program doesn’t replace the recommended coverage provided by a standard policy.

Even though the price tag doesn’t exceed one dollar per day, policyholders will be on the hook for costs that accompany an accident. Without full coverage, low-income drivers will likely struggle to pay for medical expenses and outpatient treatments not covered by Medicaid and costs typically covered by personal injury protection and collision coverage.

Due to the associated financial risks, Insurify only recommends insurance coverage with SAIP for New Jersey drivers as a last resort. If possible, enroll in auto insurance coverage that meets New Jersey’s state minimum insurance requirements. This is a better option for most drivers. A basic policy will provide better protection in the event of a car collision.

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How to Save on Car Insurance in New Jersey

Insurance providers consider multiple factors when determining monthly costs, including your driving record, desired coverage, credit history, state, city, and more. People with clean driving records typically earn the lowest insurance premiums, depending on additional discount eligibility requirements.

When drivers compare quotes online, they find the most affordable rates available that match their specific car insurance needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is New Jersey's dollar-a-day insurance program?

    The New Jersey SAIP, or dollar-a-day, insurance program through the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance provides eligible low-income drivers with limited coverage for a low yearly price. For no more than $365 a year, policyholders have coverage below the state minimum requirement that still allows them to drive on the road legally and insured.

  • Am I eligible for New Jersey’s dollar-a-day program?

    Eligibility requirements include status as a New Jersey resident, no existing auto insurance policy, enrollment in the federal Medicaid program with hospitalization, and possession of a valid ID card with a driver’s license and registration. Not everyone enrolled in Medicaid qualify for SAIP, and those with a revoked or suspended license don’t qualify either.

  • What does the New Jersey dollar-a-day insurance program cover for policyholders?

    Drivers covered under the New Jersey dollar-a-day insurance program have less than the minimum coverage required by the state. Coverage in the event of an accident includes emergency treatment of the policyholder, as much as $250,000 in brain and spinal cord injury treatment of the policyholder, and $10,000 death benefit for the deceased policyholder’s family.

  • How can I find cheap car insurance?

    Finding cheap car insurance requires potential policyholders to shop around for the best available prices and coverage. The costs of insurance coverage regularly fluctuate, meaning a provider that meets your needs with a low price may not do the same in the next policy period. Make sure to shop around.

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Data scientists at Insurify analyzed more than 40 million real-time auto insurance rates from our partner providers across the United States to compile the car insurance quotes, statistics, and data visualizations displayed on this page. The car insurance data includes coverage analysis and details on drivers' vehicles, driving records, and demographic information. Quotes for Allstate, Farmers, GEICO, State Farm, and USAA are estimates based on Quadrant Information Service's database of auto insurance rates. With these insights, Insurify is able to offer drivers insight into how companies price their car insurance premiums.

Katie Powers
Katie PowersInsurance Writer

Katie Powers is an insurance writer at Insurify with a producer’s license for property and casualty insurance in Massachusetts and expertise in personal finance and auto insurance topics. She strives to help consumers make better financial decisions. Prior to joining Insurify, she completed her undergraduate and graduate degrees at Emerson College. Her work has been published in St. Louis Magazine, the Boston Globe, and elsewhere. Connect with Katie on LinkedIn.