Sara’s Law, the Next-of-Kin Program, Commemorates Its Tenth Anniversary

SAYREVILLE, NJ – Just over a decade ago, the Next-Of-Kin program enacted as Sara’s Law was created in memory of Sara Elizabeth Dubinin, a 19-year old Sayreville resident who tragically lost her life on September 25, 2007.

The Next-Of-Kin registry and all information submitted to the system is not a public record. Dubinin was critically injured after the vehicle that she was in ran off the road and struck a tree just a few miles from her family’s home. 

It was only after a friend of a friend of Dubinin’s called her residence to ask about her condition that her mother learned that her only child was injured.

Dubinin’s parents rushed immediately to the nearby hospital. However, by the time they arrived – approximately two hours and 90 minutes after her arrival there– their daughter had already slipped into a coma before unfortunately passing away the next morning.

She was a 2006 graduate of Cardinal McCarrick High School in South Amboy; she loved riding horses; and she was attending Middlesex County College, following in her mother’s footsteps and chasing her dream to become a teacher.

The Sara Dubinin Scholarship was set up in her memory.

Various memorials have been set up in her memory, including a garden at Kennedy Park. The family also set up The Sara Dubinin Scholarship in her memory.

Recipients of the scholarship include graduates of Sayreville War Memorial High School, Cardinal McCarrick High School and Our Lady of Victories school, as well as horse enthusiasts. 

Signed into law by former Gov. Chris Christie, Sara’s Law takes the form of a web-based registry that allows individuals 14 years and older to voluntarily submit and manage emergency contact information through the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. 

However, it was not released to the public until November 2012. The registry is used by law enforcement to locate designated emergency contacts in the case that a person is involved in a motor vehicle crash rendering that person unable to communicate. 

The information that is needed to fill out the form includes:

  • Applicant’s first and last name
  • Applicant’s address
  • Applicant’s driver’s license number (or non-driver identification card number)
  • Applicant’s full social security number (online only)
  • Up to two (2) emergency contact may be entered:
  • Provide first name, last name and the primary 10-digit phone number for each emergency contact
  • Parent/Guardian signature, if applicant is under the age of 18
  • If you are a parent of a minor, the same last name, a birth certificate and marriage license are required for verification
  • If you are the guardian of the minor, then Guardianship papers and/or any legal paperwork showing this must be shown for verification

Sara’s Law was expanded in February 2019 to include a vehicle registry. This new feature allows for the Next-Of-Kin registry to connect to the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) on an individual’s vehicle.

For more information about Sara’s Law and to register, visit the Next-of-Kin Registry.

 

Reporter at New Brunswick Today | mthompson@nb.today