Driving Safety Course
Pursuant to Chapter 45 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, a defendant may complete a driving safety course in lieu of paying the fines on offenses involving the operation of a motor vehicle. However, the completion of a driving safety course is not allowed for defendants who hold a commercial vehicle drivers license.
Defendants issued a citation while operating a motorcycle qualifies for deferred disposition if they successfully complete a motorcycle operator training course. Also, defendants issued a citation for failing to wear a seat belt or for a passenger or child not in a safety seat/seat belt can also complete a seat belt safety course to have a citation omitted from their driving record.
Requesting Driving Safety Courses
The request to take a safety course must be made prior to the expiration of the 15-day period allowed to appear on your citation. The request must be made in person at the Clerk's office or in writing and mailed Certified Mail to the Mansfield Municipal Court. Payment of the State costs and administrative fees should be submitted with your request.
The following are the requirements which must be met if you elect to complete a driving safety course to dismiss your citation:
- You must have a valid Texas driver's license. The defendant must produce a valid Texas driver's license or permit or be a member, spouse, or dependent child of a member of the U.S. military forces serving on active duty.
- You must have proof of financial responsibility (insurance).
- You cannot have taken a driving safety course, seat belt safety course, or motorcycle operator training course for a traffic offense if you have taken a similar course within twelve months (1 year) of the date of the citation you are wanting dismissed.
- You cannot have taken a driving safety course or motorcycle operator training course for dismissal of another citation with said course not yet being reflected on your driving record or be in the process of taking the course for another traffic violation.
- You cannot have a commercial driver's license or have been charged with an offense in a construction zone or for speeding 25 miles or more over the posted speed limit.
- You must enter a plea of guilty or nolo contendere/no contest.
- You must pay the State costs and administrative fees to the court before the driving safety course is taken.
- You must file an affidavit with the Court stating you have met the above requirements and agree to pay the costs and fees.
- You must obtain a copy of your driving record from the Department of Public Safety (DPS). An application to obtain your record will be provided to you by the Court clerks after your request for a safety course is granted. A $10 fee will be charged by DPS for the copy of your driving record. This fee should be paid directly to the DPS and must be mailed with your application to the DPS in Austin, Texas.
If you request permission to take a driving safety course, disposition of your citation will be deferred for 90 days to allow you time to complete the course and return the Certificate of Completion and your Certified Copy of your Driving Record to the Court. You are required to attend a driving safety course that is approved by the Texas Education Agency or at the Texas Department of Public Safety.
After successful completion of the safety course, you will be mailed a certificate of completion by the Texas Education Agency or Texas Department of Public Safety. You must complete the course and return the signed Certificate of Completion and your Certified Copy of your Driving Record to the Court within 90 days of this request. If you fail to complete the course within 90 days, you will not be eligible for this means of deferral and must contact the Court immediately to avoid a warrant for your arrest being issued.
Furthermore, if you fail to provide the Court with your certificate within the 90 day period, you will be summoned to Court to show cause as to why your certificate was not returned. If you do not appear for the show cause hearing this will result in the issuance of a warrant for your arrest.