The Benefits of a Defensive Driving Course in New Jersey
Seasoned Traffic Offense Attorneys providing professional Advice in Westfield, Elizabeth, Union, Linden, and the greater Union County Area.
Safe and defensive driving is a skill gained from initial courses when obtaining one’s driver’s license and experience out on the road. In a state like New Jersey, however, where there are many areas of high traffic, refining your awareness of the importance of defensive driving and techniques to that end is essential. Not only will it help you clear points off of your driving record from traffic violations, but it can also save you a lot of money on your car insurance premium. Add to that the obvious fact that it will help you keep yourself, those you love, and other motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians safe, and the benefits of participating in a defensive driving course are many. Defensive driving courses around New Jersey are affordable and quick. If you’re considering taking a defensive driving course, read on to learn more about the specific benefits.
What are defensive driving courses good for?
If you participate in and pass a defensive driving course, you will experience three main benefits, which support your finances, your driving record, and the overall safety of New Jersey’s roads.
- Upon completing the course, you will receive a New Jersey Auto Insurance Discount applied to your insurance provider.
- As many as two points will be removed from your New Jersey driving record, helping you to clean up your record after past traffic violations.
- New Jersey’s roads will become safer because you will become safer as a motorist.
How does the New Jersey Auto Insurance Discount function?
Each auto insurance provider for New Jersey motorists has a different agreement with its clients regarding how taking a defensive driving course will affect their insurance premium rates. According to New Jersey Statute 17:33B-45.1, New Jersey auto insurance providers are required to offer a discount to drivers who pass a defensive driving course that the NJ Motor Vehicles Commission has approved. Generally, auto insurance providers offer a 5 percent to 10 percent discount for drivers who have completed this course. This results in savings of hundreds of dollars over the course of the time the course is valid on premiums alone before adding additional savings to maintain safety on the roads. If you pass a defensive driving course, your certificate will be valid for three years, during which you are eligible for the auto insurance discount simply by presenting your completed document to your provider. Passing the quick and easy course once every three years ensures that those discounts – and your refined approach to safe driving – will continue.
How does the reduction of points on the New Jersey driving record support me?
An obvious benefit of completing a defensive driving course is that the New Jersey Motor Vehicles Commission will remove points from your driving record upon completion. You’ll remember that having points on your record can cause a plethora of problems, from increased auto insurance rates to the potential that your driver’s license can be suspended for a future traffic violation, depending on its nature. Suspension of a driver’s license occurs when you accumulate 12 points on your driving record. Reinstating that license isn’t so easy; there are several hoops you must jump through, such as completing a Driver Improvement Program, as well as hefty fines associated with reinstating your license. Reinstatement itself costs $150, and the Driver Improvement Program required to earn the MVC’s consideration of returning your license also costs around $150.
Even if you don’t gather 12 points on your driving record and have your license stripped, there are other financial costs to being an unsafe driver and engaging in traffic violations. A specific number of points are associated with each moving violation; for example, failing to yield to a pedestrian can earn you two points on your driving record, and tailgating can earn you five points. If you accumulate six points on your driving record, you’ll be subject to pay surcharges. These surcharges start at $150 and increase by $25 for each additional point up to 12 that you have on your record (at which point your license is revoked). You can be subject to pay these surcharges for multiple years.
Fortunately, the NJ MVC will remove three points from your record for every year you drive safely, receiving no moving violations. The NJ MVC will also remove two points for the completion of a defensive driving course.
Contact our Traffic Law Attorney for a consultation at our Linden Office
Let us represent you while you take steps to reduce points on your record in service of the safety of yourself and all New Jersey motorists.
At Law Offices of Edward S. Cooper, Esq, we successfully represent clients in Westfield, Elizabeth, Union, and Linden.