Defensive Driving is a method to keep a citation off of your driving record. Upon the timely completion of an approved driver's safety course and the return of the Certificate of Completion and a copy of your Driving Record (obtained from the Texas Department of Public Safety) to the court, the court dismisses your citation.
Once you determine that you are eligible for Defensive Driving, you must:
- make a timely request to the court for defensive driving (within your appearance date);
- present satisfactory proof all the above requirements (driver's license & insurance); and
- pay the court costs plus all applicable fees in full at the time of your request.
The Court will then sign an order allowing you to complete defensive driving. You have 90 days from the date of the court's order to complete your course and submit all paperwork.
Most courses take a minimum of two (2) days to complete. If you do not complete the course on the date ordered, you will be deemed to have failed the course. If you do not turn in your Defensive Driving Certificate of Completion and your Driving Record to the court by the last day of your probation, you will be deemed to have failed the course. Extensions of time are not granted.
It is advisable to make a copy of the certificate and keep a court file-marked copy for at least three (3) years from the date of your order.
You can locate a Defensive Driving Class in the Yellow Pages of your phone book under DRIVING INSTRUCTION or Google Search Online.
- Online Request to take Defensive Driving
- Request your Driving Record online
- Download/print the form to mail in a request for your Driving Record
Failure to Take the Course
Failure to timely take the course or failure to timely return your certificate of completion will result in a $200.00 fine plus court costs and the report of a conviction on your driving record including the assessment of points and surcharges by the Department of Public Safety.
To be eligible for Defensive Driving:
- You must make the request for Defensive Driving either in writing or by appearing in person at the municipal court within 20 calendar days from the offense date on the citation.
- You must enter a plea of "guilty" or "no contest".
- You must pay the court costs plus $10.00 in full at the time you make the request. There are no extensions or payment plans for this payment.
- You must show proof of valid automobile liability insurance with your name on the policy.
- You must show proof of a current Texas Drivers License.
- You must not have taken a course for ticket dismissal within the 12 months preceding the date of your citation.
You are not eligible for Defensive Driving:
- You are accused of speeding 25 miles per hour or more than the posted speed limit;
- Your violation occurred in a construction zone when workers were present; or
- You have a commercial drivers license.
- You are accused of Fail to stop and give information/render aid; or
- You are accused of Passing a School Bus