What is a driving record?
A driving record is a report that shows your driving history. It includes your personal information, license number, license classification, status, expiration date, points, fines, suspensions, and other traffic violations and convictions.
Some information in your driving record may be available to other individuals or entities as well, such as your current or future employer and insurance company.
With that out of the way, you might want to know how you can get hold of your PA driving record.
Well, in this article, we’re going to give you a 2021 guide on how to get a driving record in Pennsylvania. We’ll also discuss the point system and how to maintain a good driving record.
So let’s get started!
Why Should You Check Your PA Driving Record?
But first, you might be wondering, “why do I need my PA driving record?”
For one, there could be errors in the report. Mistakes seldom appear in a driving record, but in case you find one, you should raise it to the PA DMV so it can be corrected.
You will also want to monitor the points on your record as they will directly affect your driving privileges or insurance rates.
To give you an example: to your insurance agent, high points mean you are a high-risk driver and are therefore prone to accidents. This may cause your insurance premiums to go up.
Of course, you don’t have to check your driving record regularly. We’d say review it at least annually.
How to Request Your Driving Record in Pennsylvania
There are 3 ways to request for your PA driving record. These are:
Let’s discuss each way one by one.
Here’s how you can request your PA driving record online.
First, visit the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation Individual Driver Records page. Read the instructions carefully (don’t worry, it’s very short), and make sure you satisfy all the system requirements before you proceed with your request.
After you click “I Agree” on the first page, you will proceed to another page where you have to provide the below details:
Driver’s License Number
Date of Birth
Last four digits of your Social Security Number
You will also need to pay the request fee.
Note: beginning July 1st, 2021, the fee for the Pennsylvania driving record will be $12.
Once available, you will receive a link to your PA driving record. You can download the PDF file and print it (if you need to).
If you need a certified copy (for official use) of your driving record, you will have to request it by mail.
To do that, download, print, and fill out the Request for Driver Information Form or DL-503.
Then, submit the completed form, along with your check payment or money order to the following address:
Bureau of Driver Licensing
Driver Record Services
P.O. Box 68695
Harrisburg, PA 17106-8695
For special mail, send your request to:
Bureau of Driver Licensing
Driver Record Services
1101 South Front St. 3rd Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17104-2516
You can also request your PA driving record in person. Again, you will need to complete the DL-503. This time, though, you have to personally deliver it to your local DMV office.
In-person requests are great if you need to receive your driving record on the same day.
Understanding the Points System in Pennsylvania
The state of Pennsylvania has a point system in place to encourage drivers to improve habits and observe safe driving.
If you are charged with a violation, points will be added to your driving record.
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation takes corrective action when the driving record reaches 6 points or more. Here are their corrective actions:
6 points - a written notice to take a written special point exam
6 points (after initially reducing it to below 6 points) - required to attend a Departmental hearing
1+ points (in addition to the 6 points) - Additional hearings, or worse, license suspended.
6+ points - may result in license suspension
Below are a few violation examples with their corresponding points:
Failure to obey authorized person directing traffic
Failure to stop for a red light
Improper passing on a hill
Exceeding maximum speed (31 or more miles over speed limit)
Failure to stop for a school bus with flashing red lights
How to Maintain a Good Driving Record in Pennsylvania
Now, the easiest and surest way to maintain a good driving record is to always abide by traffic laws and to practice safe driving.
But sometimes, we just can’t avoid a traffic ticket.
In that case, you can dismiss the ticket (and prevent points from being added to your driving record) by attending a traffic school.
Note: make sure your court handler approves to dismiss your ticket through a traffic school.
Traffic schools are great as they can:
- Give you a refresher course on things you learned before you acquired your license
- Help you learn several new laws and regulations that you can apply on the road
- Allows you to dismiss tickets, thus preventing points from accumulating in your driving record
- Allows you to lower your insurance premiums (make sure you ask your insurance provider first)
The good news is that you don’t need to leave home to complete a traffic school program.
There are many online traffic schools now that offer self-paced courses at low prices.
If you’re looking for a reliable one, we highly recommend GoToTrafficSchool.
GoToTrafficSchool is one of the best and most affordable online traffic schools in the US. It offers the lowest price guarantee. It even lets you begin the course for free and pay only before you complete it.
It is one of the earlier adopters of online traffic education and has been around since 1999. It offers traffic school courses, defensive driving courses, and driver improvement programs to more than 25 states. To date, GoToTrafficSchool has served over four million satisfied customers.
With GoToTrafficSchool’s DMV-approved courses, you can:
- Mask a moving violation
- Qualify for an insurance discount
- Improve driving skills
GoToTrafficSchool’s courses are completely mobile-friendly and highly interactive. Apart from text lessons, they feature multimedia content such as audio, animations, and 3D videos.
Obtaining a copy of your driving record in Pennsylvania is really easy.
Here’s a quick recap:
- Online: Visit the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation Individual Driver Records page.
- By Mail: Submit the Request for Driver Information Form” or DL-503 along with your check payment or money order to the Bureau of Driver Licensing.
- In-Person: Complete the DL-503 form and visit your local DMV office. You should be able to get your driving record on the same day.
If you need help avoiding points on your driving record or qualifying for an insurance discount, you can opt to take an online traffic school course from GoToTrafficSchool.