Idaho drivers have access to defensive driving courses that can be used to dismiss a traffic ticket, reduce driver’s license points, avoid a license suspension, and earn a discount on auto insurance. In addition to legal and financial benefits, many Idaho drivers choose to take defensive driving to improve their driving skills and safety.
Defensive Driving Courses in Idaho
Idaho’s transportation department operates on a violation point system. For each minor moving violation, a point value between one and four is assessed and maintained three years after the conviction date.
Drivers who accumulate between eight to 11 points in a 12 month period, 14 to 17 points in a 24 month period, and 20 to 23 points in a 36 month period. Drivers who reach 23 points may risk a driver’s license suspension.
Once every three years, Idaho drivers can take defensive driving to reduce their driving record points by three. However, the course must be completed before a suspension is assessed.
In addition to defensive driving for points accumulation, drivers can agree to enroll in a traffic safety education course when they receive a traffic ticket. The program is offered by law enforcement officers directly and must be agreed to at the citation time. Completing this course will remove the number of points associated with the citation from the driver’s record. However, it’s important to note that completing defensive driving in Idaho will not remove your driving record’s convictions.
Idaho Defensive Driving Course Eligibility
Most Idaho drivers will be eligible to enroll in defensive driving, as the state offers few exceptions. You’ll need to meet these requirements to be able to enroll in defensive driving for points reduction:
- drivers must hold a valid Idaho driver’s license
- drivers may only take defensive driving for points reduction or dismissal once every three years
- courses must be taken before a suspension is applied
If you’d like to reduce your driver’s license points with defensive driving, you must start by verifying your eligibility. Contact the Idaho Transportation Department to get a copy of your driving record and ask if you’re eligible to reduce your points with a defensive driving course. Don’t skip this essential step, as if you’re ineligible, you may not get credit for completing the course — and typically, no refunds will apply.
It’s also important to note that traffic safety education courses offered for dismissal of traffic ticket points are offered at law enforcement officers’ discretion. These courses are not always available, and if offered, you must accept them while you’re receiving your citation.
Idaho Traffic Ticket Dismissal with Defensive Driving
Idaho’s traffic ticket dismissal program is unique in that it is not offered by the court but by the law enforcement officer. When stopped for a traffic citation, a law enforcement officer is permitted to offer a traffic safety education course to drivers at his or her discretion. This course is offered only at the time of the citation and must be accepted immediately. It is available once every three years and will remove the number of points associated with the citation from your driving record. However, completing a traffic safety education course will not remove a conviction from your driving record.
Defensive Driving Courses Available in Idaho
Idaho’s defensive driving and traffic safety education courses are ultimately designed to help make you a better driver. In these courses, you’ll learn important tips, resources, and skills for safe, defensive driving, avoiding collision and following traffic laws.
Typically, defensive driving and traffic safety education courses will be between four to eight hours long. They may be offered in the classroom or online. Some schools will allow you to complete your course in more than one session, and typically online, you can log in and log out as you need.
As every school will do things slightly differently, your actual curriculum will vary depending on the school and course you enroll in. But most defensive driving courses will offer similar topics of instruction, which usually include:
- defensive driving techniques
- dangerous driving situations including drunk driving, distracted driving, drowsy driving, and aggressive driving
- practicing safe driving habits
- proper following distance, passing, and maintaining a safe speed
- maintaining your car safely
- collision avoidance
- dealing with hazardous driving situations such as construction, accidents, traffic, and inclement weather
- proper use of vehicle safety features such as anti-lock brakes, seat belts, car seats, and airbags
- predicting and reacting to driver actions
- Idaho’s current driving laws and regulations
Defensive Driving for Car Insurance Discounts in Idaho
While defensive driving is a good idea for drivers interested in a points reduction in Idaho, you can take the course whether you’ve gotten a ticket or not. In fact, it’s a good idea to enroll voluntarily, as you’ll not only learn safe driving techniques and tips for defensive driving, you’ll also potentially earn a discount on your auto insurance premiums.
Idaho Defensive Driving Insurance Discounts
Idaho auto insurance companies will often encourage drivers to complete a defensive driving course by giving a monthly premium discount for those who enroll. You can expect your discount to be about 10% for the average driver, with discounts ranging from 5% to 20%.
Idaho Defensive Driving Insurance Discount Eligibility
Idaho places no restrictions on who can be eligible for an auto insurance discount with defensive driving. However, many insurance companies do. The insurance company may limit discounts only to elderly or new drivers or only give them to drivers who have maintained a safe driving record.
Before you enroll in defensive driving for an insurance discount, make sure you contact your insurance company. You’ll need to verify your eligibility for the discount, and you can also find out how much you can save. You mustn’t skip this step, as enrolling in a defensive driving course without eligibility may result in not getting credit for your discount — and defensive driving schools will typically not offer a refund of course fees in this situation. If your insurance company doesn’t have a discount available for you, consider shopping around to find a company that can give you a discount for defensive driving.
Insurance Defensive Driving Courses Available in Idaho
Idaho’s insurance defensive driving courses are typically the same courses taken for points reduction. In this course, you’ll learn important safety lessons and defensive driving techniques that can save your life and make driving easier. Upon completion, you’ll be prepared to drive safer, reducing your risk of accidents and avoiding traffic tickets. While each school will offer its own individual curriculum, most Idaho defensive driving schools will provide students with instruction in the following defensive driving topics:
- avoiding accidents
- the dangers of excessive speed
- proper following distance, passing technique, and yielding, particularly to emergency vehicles
- being a courteous, safe driver
- preventing injury and death
- the importance of avoiding alcohol and drugs while driving
- using your vehicle’s safety features
- defensive driving techniques
- Idaho’s traffic laws and regulations
Enroll in an Idaho Defensive Driving Course
Get started on the road to safer driving with a defensive driving course in Idaho. Choose from a state qualified defensive driving school in our directory today!