Defensive Driving in Delaware
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What is a Delaware Defensive Driving Course?
If you want to earn a car insurance discount or a points credit for your Delaware DMV driving record, a defensive driving course may be your solution.
Defense driving programs, or traffic schools, are approved by the Delaware Department of Insurance (DOI) and are available for you to take voluntarily.
If you've been convicted of multiple traffic violations and determined to be an aggressive driver, you may be required to complete a behavioral modification/attitudinal-driving course or driver improvement course. The Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) must approve the course.
Defensive driving, or traffic school, is designed to instill safe driving habits, which may serve to prevent future traffic violations and accidents.
On this page you'll find information about required and voluntary defensive driving courses and your options for completing a program.
Delaware DMV-Approved Defensive Driving Courses
Defensive driving courses and traffic school can be taken in Delaware to:
- Receive a points credit on your DE DMV driving record.
- Earn a car insurance discount.
- Avoid a driver's license suspension and additional DMV fees.
You'll have the option of completing defensive driving online or in a classroom.
Generally, your eligibility for a points credit or to earn a discount will depend upon your specific circumstances and your driving history.
NOTE: Some Delaware traffic courts may allow you to complete traffic school to dismiss a citation. Your eligibility to dismiss a ticket will be determined by the court on a case-by-case basis. Contact the Delaware court handling your ticket for more information.
Aggressive Driver Improvement Course
If you're convicted of aggressive driving, the Delaware DMV requires you to complete a driver improvement traffic school course.
You may be convicted of aggressive driving if you commit 3 violations or more, including those such as:
- Failing to yield.
- Running traffic lights and signs.
- Following too closely.
- Passing on the shoulder.
You'll need to complete a behavioral modification/attitudinal-driving course within 90 days of being convicted of aggressive driving.
You have the option of completing your driver improvement program online or in the classroom. Regardless of how you take the course, it will last at least 8 hours and cost $100.
Visit the Delaware DMV website for a complete list of approved driver improvement traffic school providers.
NOTE: If you fail to complete a driver improvement program within 90 days, your driver's license can be suspended. If your driver's license is suspended, you'll need to complete a driver improvement course before you can reinstate your driving privileges.
For more information, please visit our Suspended License in Delaware page.
Driving Record Point Reduction
When you receive traffic convictions, the Delaware DMV will add points to your driving record.
- If you accumulate 12 points, you'll need to complete a driver improvement course.
- If you accumulate 14 points, your CT driver's license will be suspended, and you'll be required to complete a driver improvement course.
Every 3 years, you'll have the option of completing a Delaware defensive driving course which can result in a credit of 3 points.
You'll have the option of completing an online defensive driving course or classroom traffic school.
For a complete list of approved defensive driving courses/traffic schools, please visit the DE Department of Insurance website.
Along with avoiding a possible driver's license suspension or mandatory completion of a driver improvement program, a defensive driving course will help you:
- Develop safe driving habits.
- Avoid accumulating driving record points in the future.
- Understand traffic stop procedures.
For information about obtaining your driving record to check your points, please visit our Driving Records in Delaware page.
Car Insurance Discount
Delaware defensive driving/traffic school is also an option if you want to earn a discount on your car insurance.
If every driver of your vehicle completes a defensive driving course online or in the classroom, you'll receive a 10% discount for 3 years.
If you and the other drivers of your car take a refresher course with 90 days before the end of the 3 years, you'll receive a 15% discount.
For a complete list of approved defensive driving courses and traffic schools, please visit the Delaware Department of Insurance website.
How Long is Delaware Traffic School?
Both classroom and online defensive driving courses will include lessons about:
- Safe driving habits.
- Better driving attitudes and behaviors.
- Delaware traffic laws and violations.
- Curbing aggressive driving.
- Alcohol/drug abuse, violations and awareness.
The length of your course will vary depending on your reason for taking defensive driving, but generally:
- Aggressive driver improvement courses last at least 8 hours.
- Point reduction and insurance discount traffic school lasts about 6 hours.
- Defensive driving refresher courses last about 3 hours.
At the end of your course you'll need to pass a final exam. Once you pass, you should receive a certificate of completion.
If you have any questions about your eligibility to take defensive driving for an auto insurance discount or a driving record point reduction, please contact the Delaware DMV or your insurance provider.