There are several reasons why you may take an approved defensive driving course.  In some cases, you are required to take a course and in other’s you may take one voluntarily for a personal benefit.  Each county may have their own rules.  

  • Remove points on your driving record due to a conviction.
  • You want to reinstate your driver’s license.
  • You may be able to get a discount on your vehicle insurance.
  • You received a traffic ticket and have a court order
  • Become a safer driver

If you are eligible, it should be stated on your traffic ticket.  Or if not, your citation may state "YOU MUST APPEAR IN COURT".  You must choose whether you would like to go to traffic school before your court date.  The completed form must be received by the appropriate court before your date on the citation for a court appearance.  Every country may have a different form as well.  Here is an example form used by McLean County.

Here is a list of Certified Defensive Driving Schools for Illinois.

Frequently Asked Questions About Defensive Driving Programs

What is a Driving Safety Course / Driver Improvement course?

It is a course designed to teach drivers about safe driving attitudes and behaviors.

Why would/should I take a Defensive Driving course?

It may be used to reduce points, get your license reinstated, reduce your insurance rates.  It may also have been ordered by the court in response to a traffic violation.

Is this the same as a Driver's Education course?

No, Driver's Education courses are required for 16-year-olds to obtain their license.  Any licensed driver may take a Defensive Driving course.

Does the course have to be approved?

If you are only taking the course for self-education it does not need to be approved.  But if you need it to fulfill requirements for points reductions, mandated course, or other driver's license related issues, it must be approved / certified.  Refer above to a list of approved courses.

Can I take it online?

Yes.  There are both online and traditional classroom courses available.  In the list on the site, there is information about each school and whether it offers an on-line course.

Do I need a car to take the course?

These are classroom based courses and you do not need to provide a vehicle for the course.

How much will this cost?

There isn't one standard price.

Can I use this if I have a CDL License?


Driving Apps

There are also apps available for your phone that can help you be a safer driver.