What Is the New York Law Enforcement Fee?

If you plan to insure a car in New York, you’ll likely owe a law enforcement fee. Here’s how much it costs and what it covers.
Written by Melanie Krieps Mergen
Reviewed by Bellina Gaskey
Drivers in the state of New York are subject to the Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fee. It can range from $5 to $10 per vehicle and is due when you renew your
car insurance
or when you add a new vehicle to your policy.
  • The cost of the New York Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fee is $5 or $10 per vehicle, depending on the length of your policy.
  • Your annual fee shouldn’t exceed more than $10 per vehicle in a single year.
  • Nonpayment of the fee could result in your car insurance being canceled.

What is the New York law enforcement fee?

In New York, the Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fee is owed on vehicles that have liability insurance coverage.
The fee is due when you renew your car insurance or add a new vehicle to your policy—it can’t be made in installments.
These fees are collected and then distributed among the state’s local law enforcement agencies, and insurance providers are required to collect them.
The law enforcement fee is charged per car rather than per policy, so you’ll owe this fee for each vehicle on your car insurance policy (unless there’s an exception for your vehicle type).
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How much is the NY law enforcement fee?

The cost of New York’s Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fee largely depends on the term length of your policy. 
For policies with a term of six months or less, the fee is $5, with a policyholder’s annual total paid not to exceed $10 per insured vehicle.
The fee should be paid in full when the policy period begins or when a new vehicle is added to an existing policy.
For policies with a term longer than six months, the fee is $10.

Which vehicles are excluded from the NY law enforcement fee?

The Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fee generally applies to each insured vehicle on an auto policy. The majority of typical passenger vehicles are subject to the fee.
There are some exceptions for certain vehicles, some of which include:
  • Motorcycles
  • Trailers
  • Semi trailers
  • Snowmobiles
  • ATVs
  • Tractors and other exclusively agricultural vehicles
  • Electric-powered mobility devices to assist with disabilities (i.e., an electric wheelchair)
More information about what the law enforcement fee applies to can be found in paragraph (b) of subdivision one of Section four hundred one of New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law.

Will your car insurance policy be canceled if you don’t pay the NY law enforcement fee?

Your car insurance policy could be canceled if you don’t pay the law enforcement fee. Insurance companies are required by law to collect these fees and can face penalties if they don’t.
The consequences of driving without insurance are far more severe than that $5 or $10, so it’s in your best interest just to pay the fee.
If you believe you were charged incorrectly for the law enforcement fee, check in with your insurance agent. 

Why is the NY law enforcement fee necessary?

The Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fee is frequently debated, but it’s necessary in the sense that it’s currently required by New York law. Most New Yorkers who insure a vehicle will be subject to the fee, whether they live in Albany, Brooklyn, or Buffalo.
Once collected, the funds are passed from insurance providers onto the state government, where they’ll be directed toward funds for the Division of Criminal Justice Services and the Division of State Police.
The resources from this fee are intended to aid police officers and police departments in addressing car-related crimes, including auto theft and insurance fraud.

How to save money on your New York car insurance costs

$10 per year may not sound like much, but New York’s law enforcement fee can certainly add up if you have multiple vehicles to insure. To help compensate, here are some ways you could trim down the cost of your car insurance premium:
  • Maintain a clean driving record: Plenty of factors affect what you pay for car insurance, with your driving record being one of the most significant. The cleaner your driving record, the lower the rate you can enjoy.
  • Consider a pay-per-mile policy: If you’re a more infrequent driver, it may be more cost-effective to switch to a pay-per-mile policy, which is based on how much you actually drive.
  • Take advantage of car insurance discounts: Each car insurance provider has their own list of possible discounts. Taking an approved driver safety course, going accident-free for a certain amount of time, paying your premium in full, and multi-vehicle or multi-policy bundles are all common ways to save.
  • Shop around for car insurance: If you’re unhappy with your current rate, try shopping around for a better deal elsewhere. Car insurance providers consider many of the same factors when determining your car insurance rate, but each one will weigh these factors differently. 
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