Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How to Find an Online Defensive Driving Course

two women in car screaming

To operate a motor vehicle on the roads, you need to get a driver’s license. Once you have a driver’s license, you don’t usually need to be retested to get it again. The problem is that, while driving may begin to feel like second nature, often you start to forget some of the rules of the road. You may:

  • Forget what some road signs mean.
  • Perform dangerous driving maneuvers unwittingly.
  • Neglect to perform safety checks, like shoulder checking.
  • Forget the right-of way rules.

Of course, these and other driving problems can get you into trouble with the law. You can get:

  • A traffic ticket
  • A license suspension
  • Into an accident

If you get into one of these situations, you may be required to take a defensive driving course before you can get your license back, or you may need to complete it within a certain timeframe so you can keep your license. Of course, if you recognize there are driving rules you need to brush up on before you get into trouble, you can take the defensive driving course while it is still optional - preventing expensive tickets, fines, vehicle repairs, and the inconvenience of a license suspension.

Defensive driving courses are usually offered in a classroom setting with an instructor. Your schedule may not allow for such a course, or you may want to fit the course into your life with a little more anonymity than a classroom. Luckily, defensive driving courses are also offered online for many states. Here’s how to find an online defensive driving course for you.

  • Tip: Taking a defensive driving course can also get you a discount on your car insurance premiums. Check with your car insurance provider to determine if that applies to your situation.

Method 1 of 2: Check your state DMV for online defensive driving courses

If you’ve been instructed to take a defensive driving course as part of a traffic ticket or judgment, you’ll likely receive instructions on how to complete the course in your area. If you didn’t receive specific instructions, or if you want to take a defensive driving course as a refresher, you can check your state DMV to see if they offer a course online.

google dmv
Image: Google

Step 1: Perform a search in your web browser for your state’s official DMV website. Search by entering “department of motor vehicles in” and your state name.

  • Typically, the official website will have your state’s initials in the web address.

  • For example, if you are from New York, look for a web address that contains “.ny.” in it.

  • Official websites for your state will usually end in “.gov” as well, indicating a government website.

  • For example: New York’s DMV website is “dmv.ny.gov”.

dmv homepage
Image: Ney York DMV

Step 2: Search the DMV website for defensive driving courses. These may be listed under alternate names for the program, so don’t get discouraged if nothing comes up for “defensive driving.”

  • Defensive driving courses are also known as point reduction programs or insurance reduction programs in some states.

  • Use a search bar on the website to find related items or browse through the pages to find the appropriate information.

dmv search results
Image: New York DMV

Step 3: Find an approved course for your state. For example, in New York, the Points and Insurance Reduction Program page has a heading to find an approved online defensive driving course provider.

View the results and choose which course offering you’d like to complete.

  • Note: Not all states list defensive driving courses on their website. If you can’t find information on their website, call your DMV office to find out if there is a course offered that is not listed online.

Method 2 of 2: Find a reputable defensive driving course provider online

If you haven’t been mandated to complete a specific course, or if you are choosing to complete a defensive driving course on your own, you can find an online defensive driving course aside from your state’s DMV website.

Step 1: Find online listings for traffic safety courses. Perform a web search for “online defensive driving course” to get a list of results.

Choose a search result based on its relevance and determine if the source is reputable. Sources such as the American Safety Council are authoritative and are trustworthy in their results.

  • Note: You may have to check through several listings to find one that suits your needs.

Step 2: Choose the appropriate course from the listings displayed in your search. The American Safety Council website has a compiled list of highly-regarded online defensive driving courses.

Courses include:

Below, we’ll walk through the process on Safe Motorist, which allows you to choose a course that is tailored to your state.

safermotorist
Image: SafeMotorist

Step 3: Select your state from the dropdown menu on the homepage. Sites such as Safe Motorist allow you to choose courses that are directly applicable to your state.

Step 4: Select your reason for taking the course from the dropdown menu. Then, click “Start Here.”

Step 5: Complete the enrollment information on the following page. Enter your personal information to enroll in the online defensive driving course.

You’ll then need to provide payment for the course online to access the course. The enrollment process is slightly different for each course, and the cost of the defensive driving course differs from site to site.

While most people who take a defensive driving course do so because it is court-ordered, or to reduce the ticket price or points assessed for their driving violation, defensive driving courses are an excellent way to brush up on your driving skills. Some sites recommend taking a defensive driving course every two to three years to keep your driving skills sharp. Now that you know how to find the courses online, it’s a great idea to enroll - even if you consider yourself a safe driver.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

Post a question and get free advice from our certified mechanics.

ASK A QUESTION

More related articles

How to Transfer a Car Title in Idaho
In order to prove ownership of a car, you must have the title. However, when a car is sold, given away or inherited, the title needs...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in New Mexico
The state of New Mexico offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch...


Related questions

Q: How do I turn on the light on the vanity mirror?

The light on your vanity mirror automatically turns on when the vanity mirror is opened. To open the vanity mirror, pull down the sun visor, and lift open the mirror cover. This will automatically turn on the vanity mirror light....

Q: How do I adjust the side ventilators?

The side ventilators can be adjusted to control the direction and flow of the air. Manually adjust the ventilators by rotating them, and folding them open or closed.

Q: How do I choose a 12 or 24-hour clock?

Your vehicle’s clock is available in both 12 and 24-hour modes. To choose the setting for your clock, follow these quick steps: 1. Press the Trip Computer switch until the settings menu shows up. 2. Rotate the Trip Computer switch...