Some NJ Motor Vehicle deadlines extended, some procedures streamlined as long lines continue at facilities

As long lines have continued at the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission offices, Governor Phil Murphy on Thursday signed legislation that temporarily extends deadlines to register vehicles and obtain driver’s licenses for new state residents during the COVID-19 pandemic. Murphy also signed legislation that authorizes the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission to use stored driver’s license or identification card photos for longer than eight years. The legislation also limits appointment wait times at motor vehicle commission offices for senior citizens and people with certain medical conditions.

“The temporary, but necessary closure of our MVC facilities earlier this year has resulted in an undeniable burden on many residents,” Murphy said. “The MVC has made great progress in providing residents with the services that they need, under unprecedented circumstances. This legislation will reduce wait times and allow our vulnerable populations to have the access they need to obtain critical services.”  

With the signing of the legislation, new residents in the state are allowed to drive a vehicle as a non-resident for 120 days, double the 60 days previously allowed, before they must obtain New Jersey driver’s licenses and register their vehicles in the state.

The new regulations are in effect until the public health emergency executive order that was issued by the governor in March, and extended every month since then, is no longer in effect.

Planet Princeton readers have reported long lines of hundreds of people snaking around the Bakers Basin DMV site just off Route 1 in Lawrence early in the morning. One reader reported that she arrived at 7:30 a.m. on a recent weekday only to find that people had been camped out at the site before 5 a.m. Some people brought chairs and parasols because they would have to wait in the sun. She took the following video of the line when she arrived.

Some states have extended the deadline to renew licenses and registrations until the end of the year. New Jersey has extended the deadline for registrations and licenses that expired between June 1 and Aug. 31 until Dec. 31. But people whose licenses and registration expired between March 13 and May 31 only have until Sept. 30 to renew their licenses and registrations.

One Comment

  1. So we have 120 days to register our vehicles in New Jersey after coming from another state? How nice. And what are we supposed to do if Motor Vehicles has had our title for 90 of those 120 days, but still has not gotten to it in their pile of unopened mail? I have a FedEx tracking number confirming that my title was received by MVC in late June. I have gotten in line at 6 am twice, first to be turned away, the second time to be told that I would just have to wait for them to contact me when they found it. After hearing nothing for a couple more weeks, I’ve gone twice more, told again that I would just have to wait to hear from them. My time is running out.

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