Defensive Driving Course can save you on your Auto Insurance
Driver errors are the accredited cause of most road accidents. For this reason it is important not only to drive in a safe manner but also to gain skills on how to be a “defensive driver” and gain awareness of your surroundings and skills on how to react when others on the road are a hazard.
Completing a Defensive Driving Course can teach you how to improve your driving skills and limit your risk of a collision; plus you might be able to reduce up to two points from your driver record and receive a discount on your insurance.
Many auto insurance companies provide a three year discount of up to a 10% discount for each driver per vehicle that completes a defensive driving course. How much will you save? Well, the amount of savings and requirements vary from company to company. The best way to get information is to call your insurance provider or local agent and ask them how completing a defensive driver course will affect your premium.
The defensive driving course discounts vary by state
If you are interested in taking the course to reduce driver points off of your license, please check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) as regulations vary from state to state. For example, in New York State you can reduce up to 4 points for completing a defensive driving course while Michigan state normally does not offer point reductions for taking a traffic course. There may be restrictions on which tickets are eligible for reduction and/ or if drivers qualify for the discount at all. For example, the Texas DMV lists that traffic violations committed by commercial drivers are ineligible for dismissal after completing a defensive driving course; so if you own a CDL in Texas you will not qualify. You may also be limited to the number of points and frequency that you can qualify for the reduction. For example, in New Jersey “You may only receive a two point reduction once every 5 years and only if there are points on your driving record at the time you complete the course,” as per the State of New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. Again, each state has it’s own rules and regulations so please check with your local DMV for details on defensive driving courses for reduction on points on your driving record.
The Department of Motor Vehicles is also good resource for information about where you can take a defensive driving course. Traffic Schools and Defensive Driver Courses are available in all states and the DMV website for your home state will have a listing of state approved schools. Many states even give you an option of taking a defensive driving course online. On average the cost of a defensive driver course is $25, however prices do vary so shop around. With some research you can find a defensive driver course of a reasonable cost in your area.
How does it work? It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3…
After checking with your insurance provider and local state on what their rules and regulations are:
- Find a course or school that offers a driver safety / defensive driving course that is approved by your state’s Motor Vehicle Commission. You can search http://www.dmv.org/defensive-driving.php for your particular state and regulations pertaining to defensive driving courses in your area.
- Once you find a traffic school or course for defensive driving, sign up and complete the course and attain a certificate of completion. The certificate will need to list your name and date that the course was completed.
- Submit your certificate of completion to your insurance company or local agent. Once processed a discount will be applied to your auto insurance policy, as per your insurance provider’s regulations. If you are completing the course to reduce the points on your driving record, bring the certificate to your local DMV office. Be sure to keep a copy of the certificate of completion for your records so that you have proof of taking and completing the defensive driving course.