Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is the Defensive Driving Program? 

  • It is a court administered program which presents traffic safety classes through court certified commercial schools. It provides Court, Defensive Driving Board and Certification information.

Defensive Driving is:

  •   A Court diversion and education program

What are the benefits?

  • Points are not assessed to your motor vehicle record
  • Your insurance rate does not go up
  • You will learn valuable traffic information, driving techniques and laws.

Can I attend a class via the Internet?

What are the eligibility requirements for taking a defensive driving course?

  • You may not have attended a defensive driving course for citation diversion within the past 12 months 
  • Your citation must be on the list of eligible citations. Most common moving violations are eligible 
  • If eligible you can attend only for one violation
  • If you were involved in a serious injury or fatal accident you are not eligible
  • If you hold a commercial driver’s license you are not eligible for the Defensive Driving Diversion Program, regardless of whether you were driving commercially or your personal vehicle at the time of the violation. In addition, those driving a commercial vehicle requiring a commercial driver’s license are also not eligible
  • You must complete your course at least 7 days priorto your court date.

I received an Arizona ticket, but I live in a different state.  What should I do?

  • Contact You may be able to qualify to take this class.
  • You may return to Arizona for the class
  • You can attend a class in your home state, ONLY if coordinated through an Arizona Certified School
  • You must complete your course at least 7 days prior to your court date

What if I got a ticket in another state, but I live here in Arizona?

You should contact the court of jurisdiction in that state to see what they allow or require.

I hold a Commercial Driver License or drive a commercial motor vehicle that requires a commercial driver license, am I eligible for the Defensive Driving Diversion Program? 

  • If you hold a commercial driver’s licenseyou are not eligible for the Defensive Driving Diversion Program, regardless of whether you were driving commercially at the time of the violation.  In addition, those driving a commercial vehicle requiring a commercial driver’s license are also not eligible.  The only exceptions to this rule are: 1.) if the violation occured before the driver held CDL status or 2.) if the violation occured after the driver surrendered his or her CDL status. For further information, view R.S. 28-3392 .

What information is required to register for a Defensive Driving Class?

  • Schools are required to verify your identity with a government issued ID prior to attendance. Schools are required to collect and retain a copy of your citation and a copy of a court order if one has been issued. Some schools process registration by phone and require prepayment, while others register by phone but collect payment at class. Most schools require payment by money order or cashier’s check only. You should check with the school to make sure you have all the necessary documents to attend. You must complete your course 7 days prior to your court arraignment date.

What is required for a student to have with them at the time they start their class?

  • The traffic citation issued to them.
  • Their government issued identification card.
  • Course payment.
  • They will also be required to sign an affirmation of eligibility.

Is there anything I need to do after I attend school?

  • Schools report course completions to the courts by electronic means, but in some cases you would need to submit a completion certificate to the court of jurisdiction, depending on that court’s policy.

How long are the defensive driving classes?

  • Classes are required to be a minimum of 4 hours and not longer than 4 and ½ hours. The time for class registration and breaks do not count towards the minimum or maximum time.

Can I change my mind after I elect to attend the defensive driving course?

  • Yes, only before starting the course. Once the course begins you give up your option to go to Court and for a refund of your class fees.

Can I get a refund if I am unable to attend?

  • If you have started a course, a refund will not be granted.

Do I qualify for a discount on my insurance premium?

  • Some insurance companies will provide their customers a discount for voluntarily attending a defensive driving class.

What if I lose my certificate of completion?

May I take a defensive driving course for point reduction on my motor vehicle record? 

  • NO

May I take a defensive driving course for more than one violation?

  • No. You are allowed to attend for one eligible violation once every 12 months.

I’m not responsible for the violation I received. Can I have a hearing in court and then go to defensive driving class later if I lose?

  • No, you may go to court or you may attend a defensive driving school, not both. One of the purposes of the defensive driving program is to reduce court caseloads.  You must complete a defensive driving school at least 7 days before a hearing is scheduled.

What if I can’t attend during the time allowed by the court?

  • Some courts allow schools to give extensions on their behalf, click hereto see a list of these courts.  If your court is not listed on this table, you must contact the court for an extension.  The Arizona Supreme Court does not grant traffic citation extensions.

You must complete the class including taking and passing the exam 7 days prior to your court date.

  • I’ve been ordered by the Motor Vehicle Division to attend a “Traffic Survival School” or they will suspend my license. Is this the same as a defensive driving class?

    No, Traffic Survival School is for individuals who have received more serious violations or have an excessive amount of points on their driving record.                                         

Can I be ordered by the court to attend a Defensive Driving School?

  • Yes, courts do have the right to order a person attend defensive driving school, but in these cases the class is not for dismissal of the violation.                          

I went to class, but the citation is still on my record.  What should I do?

  • If the citation is the one for which you attended a defensive driving school, call the court of jurisdiction and ask them to correct the problem.


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