Wrong way on a one-way street (NJSA 39:4-85.1)

Driving the wrong way on a one-way street is against the law in New Jersey. In fact, you could face stiff fines, added points on your driving record, and increased insurance rates. Here, New Jersey traffic ticket lawyer Dan T. Matrafajlo will give you an overview of the pertinent law, as well as the consequences of violating that law.

The law: N.J.S.A. 39:4-85.1

In this instance, the relevant New Jersey law is N.J.S.A. 39:4-85.1, which says:

“42. The commissioner with respect to highways under his jurisdiction may by regulation, and local and county authorities with respect to highways under their jurisdiction may by ordinance or resolution designate any such highway or any separate roadway of such highway for one-way traffic and shall erect appropriate signs giving notice thereon.

“Upon a highway or roadway properly designated and signed for one-way traffic, a vehicle shall be driven only in the direction designated.”


MVC points and penalties

For driving the wrong way on a one-way street, theNew Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) will add two points to your driving record. If you get six or more points on your record in a three-year period, the MVC will fine you a $150 surcharge. An accumulation of 12 or more points will result in the suspension of your driver’s license.


The traffic ticket fine for driving the wrong way on a one-way street is $85.

Additionally, the municipal court can penalize you with a monetary fine between $50 and $200 and/or imprisonment in state prison for up to 15 days.

Insurance rates

In addition to getting MVC points on your driving record, the New Jersey-licensed automobile insurers will add two points under a separate, but similar, “insurance eligibility points” system. More points mean that your insurance premiums will get higher. If you get seven or more points, you will no longer be eligible to receive automobile insurance in the voluntary market.  Instead, you’ll have to go through the New Jersey Personal Automobile Insurance Plan (NJPAIP) and get more expensive at-risk coverage.

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