Municipal Courts

Defensive Driving

For any additional question on defensive driving call (915) 212-0215 or email Defensivedriving@elpasotexas.gov.

What is a driver's safety course and how do I qualify?

A driver's safety course is a 6-hour course identifying and promoting safe driving practices. Upon approval, successful completion, and submittal of a driver safety course a traffic ticket may be dismissed. 

You do not have to go before a judge to request a driver's safety course by right if:

  • You have a valid Texas Driver's License, are active military, or military family with a valid driver's license
  • You have not taken a driver’s safety course for the dismissal of a citation in the last 12 months.
  • You were not traveling 25 miles or more over the speed limit.
  • You do not have a Commercial Driver’s License.

You may NOT take a driver’s safety course by right for the following offenses:

  • Reckless Driving
  • Overtaking a School Bus Loading/Unloading
  • Speeding 25 miles or more over the speed limit.
  • Failure to Exchange Information and Render Aid at the Scene of an Accident
  • Violations in Construction Zones When Workers are Present
  • Passing an Emergency Vehicle

If you do not qualify for a driver's safety course by right you must appear at the scheduled hearing and request a driver's safety course before the judge. It will be the judges discretion whether to grant this option to you. 

State law requires defendants under the age of 17 to appear before the judge with a parent or guardian in order to request a driver safety course.

How can I request a driver's safety course by by right?

You may request a Driver Safety Course by Right in the following manner:

  • At your scheduled court hearing
  • Online
  • By Mail to 810 E Overland, El Paso, TX 79901
    • Provide full name, date of birth, citation/case number, phone number, and a check/money order for court costs and administrative fees. Contact the court at (915) 212-0215 for the fee amount.
  • In person at any of our 5 office locations
    • Pebble Hills – 10780 A Pebble Hills
    • Mission Valley – 9011 Escobar
    • Northeast – 9600 Dyer Northeast Municipal Annex
    • Westside – 4801 Osborne

You are required to pay to the Court the required court costs and administrative fee imposed by the State.

State law requires defendants under the age of 17 to appear before the judge with a parent or guardian in order to request a driver safety course.

Note: Defendants who have hired an attorney for their case, will not be able to request defensive driving by right.

What are the procedures for driver's safety course by right?

Secure Court approval, sign plea declaration/deferral order, and pay court costs;

Complete and submit by the 90th day from the request a Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) Certificate of Completion as evidence that you have completed the course;

  • If the Certificate of Completion is an On-line Printed Certificate of Completion, the certificate must have a visible Certificate Number when submitted.
  • If the Certificate of Completion is mailed to you it can take 2-3 weeks to receive.

Submit by the 90th day from the request: Proof of Insurance / Financial responsibility;

Submit by the 90th day from the request: a 3A Certified Driving Record as maintained by the Texas Department of Public Safety.

  • You may mail your certified driving record request to Texas Department of Public Safety, Box 149008, Austin, TX 78714-9008 or Request the Certified Driving Record online.

Submission of original defensive driving paperwork must be done in person or by mail. The court does not accept any driver safety course paperwork electronically.

How will I know if my proof of compliance is accepted?

The certificate of completion and any additional documentation will be reviewed by the Court. If the judge accepts your documents, your case will be dismissed for the completion of a driver’s safety course. No notice will be sent to you. To confirm paperwork acceptance you can check online or call (915) 212-0215 after 10 business days.

The Court will notify you by mail if the paperwork is incomplete or if other problems with the case are found. You will receive instructions on how to proceed in resolving your case. 

Note: Submission of original defensive driving paperwork must be done in person or by mail. The court does not accept any driver safety course paperwork electronically.

What will happen if I fail to comply with the Court order?

You will be required to appear at a Show Cause Hearing before the judge if:

    • You do not comply with the court order to take a driver’s safety class,
    • You fail to do so within the required time,
    • Your proof of compliance is incomplete,
    • You are determined to have been ineligible for the course.

You will be notified by mail of the date of your show cause hearing. 

It is the responsibility of the defendant to advise the court of any changes made to your mailing address. Update your address in person at any of the bond office locations.

What will happen if I do not come to the Show Cause Hearing?

If you do not appear at your show cause hearing, the judge may enter a guilty finding against you, assess a fine, and you will be set to appear at a Pre-Capias Warrant hearing. If you do not attend the Pre-Capias Hearing, a capias warrant for your arrest will be issued.