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Legal Advertising Requirements

Requirement to Submit Circulation Affidavit

The New Jersey Statute governing Public Notice Advertising (Title 35) requires that annually newspapers must submit affidavits of circulation to every governing body whose legal notices the paper is qualified to publish. This procedure is neglected by many newspapers. Please make sure yours is not one of them.

In section 35:2-1.  RATES FOR OFFICIAL ADVERTISING.  Following the rate schedule section, the following language appears:

Before any newspaper can charge the foregoing rates, the publisher or business manager of such newspaper must file with the proper authorized officer of every municipality, county or governing body, placing official advertising in such paper, an affidavit setting forth the average net paid circulation of such paper for 12 months period ending September 30 next proceeding and the rate to be charged for official advertising, which no case shall be in excess of, or below, the rates provided in the foregoing schedule.

What this means, in laymen’s terms, is sometime after September 30 and before January 1, the newspaper must send an affidavit to each municipality or governing body whose legal notices the paper is qualified to carry.  This affidavit must state your newspaper’s average paid circulation for the previous year, between October 1 and September 30, and the rate this qualifies you to charge that governing body for their legal (public notice) advertising.

NJPA Legal Counsel Tom Cafferty has developed sample affidavit language to use:


Legal Advertising Rates

The rate shall be calculated on the basis of the space that a line of 6-point type, 8 picas wide, would occupy.


Net Paid Circulation

 Rate Per Line
Up to 2,500 $0.25
2,500 to 5,000 $0.31
5,000 to 10,000 $0.34
10,000 to 30,000 $0.35
30,000 to 45,000 $0.36
45,000 to 60,000 $0.38
60,000 to 75,000 $0.44
75,000 to 100,000 $0.60
100,000 to 125,000 $0.66
125,000 to 150,000 $0.72
150,000 to 200,000 $0.82
200,000 to 300,000 $0.91
Greater than 300,000 $1.00

Legal Advertising Qualifications

New Jersey Statutes, Title 35: Legal Advertising - Link to state law governing legal newspapers.

Legal Newspaper Qualifications - Questions from NJPA members, answered by NJPA Legal Counsel

Serving New Jersey newspapers since 1857

New Jersey Press Association (NJPA) is a non-profit membership association formed to advance the interests of newspapers and to increase awareness in the benefits of newspaper readership. The mission of NJPA is to help newspapers remain editorially strong, financially sound and free of outside influence. We will pursue these goals in every way possible, as a service both to our members and to the people of New Jersey.

New Jersey Press Association
P.O. Box 358
Titusville, NJ 08560
Phone 609-406-0600