If you got a traffic ticket in Arizona, wave uncertainty goodbye because we have summarized the choices available to remedy your Arizona traffic ticket, including the steps you need to take for each option, like attending an AZ defensive driving school.
AZ Traffic Ticket Information
If you get pulled over for speeding or failing yield, unsafe lane changes, or similar traffic-related violations, you can get charged with a civil traffic moving violation. Unless it's your lucky day, the police officer will write a ticket and ask for your signature. By signing the ticket, you promise to resolve the ticket by either appearing in court or paying the fine by the Court Appearance Date indicated on your ticket or by completing an Arizona traffic school at least seven (7) days prior to the Court Appearance Date indicated on your ticket.
You may receive a ticket for non-moving violations that are unrelated to how you were driving; these types of tickets are also known as 'Repair Orders' because you are being ordered to make certain repairs to make your vehicle in legal driving condition.
Once you receive a Repair Order, you may only drive your vehicle to your home or business if your home or business are within 20 miles of where you received the order, or to a garage to get the problem fixed. Per A.R.S. 983.C, you may not drive your vehicle until your vehicle has been properly repaired per the Repair Order.
Correction or Adjustment of Illegal or Faulty Equipment
The Certification of Correction or Adjustment of Illegal or Faulty Equipment must be mailed within five (5) days to:
Arizona Department of Public Safety
P.O. Box 18470
Phoenix, AZ 85005-8470
If you cannot locate your Repair Order, you may send a letter containing the following information:
- Full name
- Vehicle License Plate Number
- Statement signed by you which certifies that you have corrected the problem.
In addition, each Court has different requirements regarding whether or not you need to pay a fee if the Repair Order is fullfilled. Check with your specific court in this regard. Once the DPS has received your Certification of Correction or Adjustment of Illegal or Faulty Equipment and pay a dismissal fee (if applicable), the charges will be dismissed.
Your Options after Getting an Arizona Traffic Ticket
When you get a traffic ticket in Arizona, you must make a decision and take the proper steps at least seven (7) days prior to the "Court Appearance Date" on your ticket or your driver's license may be suspended or a warrant may be issued for your arrest.
- Attend Arizona Defensive Driving School. If you are eligible to attend an AZ defensive driving school, this is the best option because points for the violation will not be assessed to your driving record, your insurance rates will not increase, and you can refresh your knowledge about important traffic safety information, techniques for driving, and Arizona traffic laws.
- Plead Guilty and Pay the Fine. Pay the fine to the AZ Court handling your ticket. The violation will appear as a conviction on your AZ motor vehicle record for a period of 39 months (3 years, 3 months) which can result in higher auto insurance rates or cancelation of your auto insurance policy
- Plead Not Guilty and Request a Hearing. If you feel you are not guilty of the violations with which you were charged, you may request a court hearing and plead 'Not Guilty.'
To pay the fine or request a hearing, locate information for your specific Arizona Court.
Arizona Traffic School
If you received a civil traffic moving violation in Arizona, you may be eligible to take an AZ defensive driving class so that you can get the violation dismissed; this means that the violation and points associated with the violation will not appear on your AZ driving record.
Benefits of Taking a Arizona Defensive Driving School
If you ARE eligible for Arizona online traffic school, the benefits are great.
- You will not have to appear to court in-person
- The violation charge will be dismissed.
- You will not have to pay the fine for the charge, but instead will have to pay a court diversion fee, state fee, state surcharge fee, and fee to the traffic school, the sum of what is normally less than the original fine you would have to pay if you pled guilty
- Additional points will not be added to your motor vehicle record for that charge
- Your insurance rates will not increase.
- You will polish your knowledge on Arizona traffic laws and become a better and more defensive driver.
Traffic School Eligibility
You will be eligible to attend an Arizona traffic school if:
- It has been at least 12 months since you attended an Arizona defensive driving school for citation diversion (ticket dismissal) purposes
- Your driver's license is not suspended or revoked
- Your violation is on the list of eligible violations. Most common traffic violations are eligible. However, serious violations such as reckless driving, driving under the influence, or similar criminal violations are not eligible. Your ticket should have a box next to each violation indicating if the violation is considered to be a criminal violation. Some courts allow you to attend traffic school for criminal speeding violations, but you must check with the court handling your ticket to confirm
- You do not hold a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL)
- The citation was not a photo enforcement ticket issued by the AZ DPS
- The citation issued to you is not related to a violation in connection to a collision that involved serious injury or death of a person.
- You received an eligible violation in Arizona but live in another state, you may attend an Arizona defensive driving school.
Steps for Taking Arizona Online Traffic School
Following are the steps necessary to attend traffic school in order to mask your citation:
- Review the list of Arizona certified defensive driving schools.
- Select an AZ Supreme Court approved school and choose the best Arizona online traffic school for you.
- Register with an AZ traffic school online as soon as possible so you will be able to take the course at your own pace and complete it at least seven (7) days prior to your court arraignment date indicated on your ticket.
- Submit identity verification/eligibility documents to the Arizona online traffic school.
- AZ defensive driving schools are required to verify your identity and determine if you are eligible to attend an Arizona defensive driving school. As such, you will be required to submit the following prior to being permitted to start the course:
- Take and complete the AZ defensive driving course online at least seven (7) days prior to your Court Appearance Date.
a) Copy of your government-issued Driver's License
b) Copy of your traffic citation
c) Affirmation of Eligibility
d) Course payment which includes course fee, court diversion fee, state fee, and state surcharge fee.