Edwize logo

Skillshare 40% OFF 

Masterclass – Best Overall
Udacity – Best Digital Skills
Coursera – Best Certifications

Thinkific – Best Overall
Teachable – Best for Beginners
LearnDash – Best WordPress Solution

Table of contents
Written by:
Martin Barrett
Last Updated:
How Long Is The Defensive Driving Course Online?

How Long Is The Defensive Driving Course Online?

There are many reasons why you may want to or need to take a defensive driving course online.

You may have been ordered by a judge to take an additional driving course after a speeding offense or you just want to learn more about safe driving skills.

Taking a defensive driving course teaches you how to handle your vehicle in certain situations. You will also learn how to control your car in an accident.

You can take a defensive driving course online but the length of time for the course depends on the course provider.

In this article, we find out that how long is the defensive driving course online.

How Long Does An Online Defensive Driving Course Take?

Defensive Driving courses online can take as long as 12 hours to complete. There are different driving course providers who offer different basic and advanced courses.

Online driving courses have the advantage that you can take them at your own pace, so you can choose a course that fits around your schedule.

Saying this, if you have been ordered by a judge to have a driving course to become a safer driver, then you may face some time limits.

Some US states require you to complete the defensive driving course within 90 days. If you do not comply with this, then you may face an additional fine.

It’s also important to find out how many hours you are required to complete with your ordered defensive driving course.

The majority of US states require you to spend between four and six hours to finish a safe driving course.

Saying this, there are also some states that ask you to spend up to 12 hours on your online driving course.

At the end of each course, you will need to take a test. When you pass the exam, you will be given a certificate that you can provide to the judge.

Length Of Time For A Defensive Driving Course By State

Whether you want to get your ticket dismissed or you want to show proof that you are a safe driver to a judge, there are a few requirements a defensive driving course needs to fulfill for this.

Different states have different regulations when it comes to accepting safe driving courses as valid proof of driver safety. Here are a few different examples.

Virginia Driver Improvement Course Online

Virginia requires online courses for driver improvement to be eight hours long. You are allowed to take the course at your own pace.

The course has a final exam where you will need to score a minimum of 80% to receive the valid certificate.

The online test can be taken from the comfort of your home and you can try as many times as you need to pass the test.

Saying this, you can only take the test once every 24 hours.

Michigan Defensive Driving Course

In Michigan, a defensive online driving course must be four hours long to be valid proof of driver safety.

You can register for the course after you receive a notice from the Secretary of State. The notice will show your deadline for the course completion.

The results of your basic driver improvement course will be automatically reported to the State of Michigan a day after completion.

Texas Online Defensive Driving Course

In the state of Texas, you don’t need to finish your online driving course in a single sitting. This means you can work through the course at your own time.

However, the state-approved defensive driving course needs to be at least six hours long. You may also be given a deadline by a court, if you want to appeal a ticket.

Once you passed the final test of your course, you will need to present the driver course completion certificate to the court.

You can also use the certificate to get a discount with your auto insurance company.

Tennessee Defensive Driving Course

In Tennessee, the online traffic school course is 4 hours long. It is ordered for certain traffic violations.

There may also be exceptions where you need to attend an 8-hour defensive driving course, so make sure to check with your court prior to booking your driver safety training.

Florida Defensive Driving Online Course

Florida’s basic driver improvement course is typically four hours long. You can use this course as proof for driver safety for minor traffic violations and insurance discounts.

However, courts in Florida also may order drivers to take an advanced 12-hour driving course or an intermediate 8-hour driver improvement course.

Whatever course you take, there is a final test at the end of the course. When you passed the exam, you will receive your certificate either through instant download or express shipping.

It’s a good idea to opt for the instant download option when you need to meet a court deadline. The mailing option can take up to 7 days.

If you complete a defensive driving course online within 4 hours and then download your certificate, you can submit everything to the court within a day.

However, if you need to complete the advanced driver improvement course that takes 12 hours to complete, then you should allow at least 3 days to complete the course and get your certificate.

Missouri Online Defensive Driving Course

Similar to other US states, Missouri requires drivers who need to take a driver improvement course to attend at least eight hours of course time.

Once you passed the exam at the end of the course, you can then fill in the 4444 form and submit this to the Missouri Drivers License Bureau.

This will help to reduce the costs of your ticket.

New York Internet Point and Insurance Reduction Program

New York has a so-called Internet Point And Insurance Reduction Program (IPIRP) which provides an online course that covers material of 6 hours.

This driving improvement course is often used to get an insurance discount on your car insurance or a reduction of points for a traffic violation.

From the date when you register to completion, you have a maximum of 30 days.

Typically, course providers will notify the state’s DMV when you completed the course and they will also send you a copy of your certificate.

Once you got your certificate, you can check your New York driving record to find out if you received the reduction in points.

Keep in mind that it can take up to a week for your official driving record to be updated, so just check back after a few days if your records haven’t been updated yet.

You can then also send the copy of your certificate to your insurance company for the discount.

As the New York state-approved defensive driving course is just six hours, you can complete it within a day.

Saying this, it will take a few more days after your completion date until all records have been updated, so the process is not instant.

Louisiana Defensive Driving Online Course

Louisiana state requires only a short four-hour long driving course which has to be approved by the local parish.

You will be able to download your certificate immediately, which you need to send on to your parish for any traffic ticket dismissal.

Benefits Of Take A Defensive Driving Course Online

Benefits Of Take A Defensive Driving Course Online

Many people don’t think about a driving course until they get pulled over and fined for a driving offense.

While attending a defensive driving course is a possible option to avoid paying a speeding ticket, there are also some other advantages of defensive driving training.

Increased Safety For The Driver And Passengers

A driving safety course teaches you everything you need to know about how to handle your vehicle safely on the road. This also covers difficult situations, such as accidents.

When you know how to behave in a tricky situation, then you can make sure that you as a driver and any of your passengers are safe.

Improved Driving Confidence

A driving course helps you keep your road safety knowledge up to date and it will ensure you feel more confident when driving.

Dismissal Of Tickets Or Lower Ticket Costs

When you can prove to a judge that you are a safe driver, then you may be able to lower the cost of your ticket or you may even get it dismissed.

Passing a defensive driving course means you will get a certificate that you can provide to the judge as proof.

Lower Insurance Rates

Some car insurance providers offer their customers a lower insurance rate when they can provide proof of a driving course.

Convenient Way Of Learning

Online courses for safe driving are a convenient way of learning more about your driving skills.

You can take the course from the comfort of your home and choose the length of course that fits your schedule.

Final Thoughts

It can take up to 12 hours to complete a defensive driving course online but you can take the course at your own pace.