Defensive Driving Class
- updated: Jul. 09, 2020
DEFENSIVE DRIVING COURSE (POINT & INSURANCE REDUCTION PROGRAM)
For most drivers, the purpose of the Point & Insurance Reduction Program, known as the Defensive Driving Course, is to save money on New York State automobile insurance. The class costs about $50. It lasts about 6 hours. The savings last for three years. For example, I personally save more than $850 during the three year period. This program can save you money on your car insurance, whether you have moving violation conviction points or not.
The Certificate of Completion will entitle you to about 10% off the liability portion of your car insurance for a period of three years. It’s like a coupon. Present a copy of the Certificate to your carrier and you will get the discount. This can translate to significant savings, particularly for young or new drivers, parents who have drivers under 25 years old or drivers with violations and/or accidents on their record.
II. Point Reduction
Completing this course does NOT delete or erase points from your record! Points will remain on your record for four years. The conviction portion of your driving record will not change if you take this course. For example, if you are convicted of an offense like speeding 11-20 mph over the posted speed limit or following too closely (4 DMV points) and take this course, the conviction and points remain on your record. The course completion details will be the only change recorded on your driving record.
The point reduction is a mathematical calculation performed by the DMV computers-DMV’s computer calculates your point total for periods of 18 months. If within any such period you are convicted of 11 or more DMV points, your driving privileges can be suspended (known as a “persistent violator” suspension). If you are eligible and complete the course at the right time, you can receive up to 4 DMV points off (-4) your point total. The suspension can be avoided if your point total reduced by 4 DMV points is 11 points or less. You are eligible to take the course for the point reduction if you have not already completed it within the past 18 months. The point credit will apply to tickets issued within the 18 months before the class was taken.
For more information, go to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicle’s website for a listing of Classroom and Internet Course Providers