Defensive Driving in New Mexico
New Mexico Defensive Driving
In New Mexico, there are multiple reasons for taking a defensive driving course. In case you didn’t know, defensive driving is also called traffic school in many states, and may even be referred to as a point reduction course. The reasons for taking defensive driving/traffic school may be to:
- Satisfy a court order received due to a traffic infraction.
- Receive an insurance rate reduction. To find out if you are eligible for a rate reduction, you must check with your insurance provider.
- Have points removed from your NM driving record to avoid a driver's license suspension.
- NOTE: You must complete the course within 90 days of applying for your driver's license reinstatement.
In New Mexico, defensive driving courses can be completed in person in a classroom setting. These courses usually are held on a weekend or in the evening. Another option that is becoming the popular choice among drivers is to take your defensive driving course online. Some of the benefits of an online course include:
- Around-the-clock access to the course.
- Stopping and starting at any time.
- Working from home, school, work, or wherever you can find an Internet connection.
Many online defensive courses also offer technical support if you run into any problems.
The details of your defensive driving course vary by state and they are constantly evolving. Below you will find some generalized requirements and facts, but it’s always a good idea to check with the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) at (888) 683-4636.
Here are some generalized requirements for taking defensive driving/traffic school:
- You need to have a valid New Mexico driver's license.
- If you were ticketed, you were not driving a commercial vehicle at the time.
- You have not taken defensive driving within the last 12 to 18 months (this may vary).
If you want to dismiss a traffic ticket, you generally cannot have committed more than 1 violation. Check with the New Mexico court handling your case to see if you are eligible for a ticket dismissal. In most cases you will receive a notice informing you of your eligibility.
A New Mexico defensive driving course typically takes 4 hours to complete; however, in some cases a course will consist of up to 8 hours.
If you opt for an online defensive driving course, you might be required to complete it within a certain number of days after signing up (usually 180 days). Usually, if you do not successfully complete your course within the specified time, you’ll fail it and you won’t be eligible to get a refund for your money.
You will also need to to pass a final exam at the end of your course. The length of the final exam for your driver improvement course may vary and is determined by the county where you received your citation. The exam is commonly 25 questions long, but it's best to check with your course provider for more information. Your court regulations will decide if you’re able to retake the final exam if you don’t pass successfully the first time you take it.Other Topics in This Section