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Texas Public Driving Records

The Texas Department of Public Safety is the government agency responsible for driving records. They act like a DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) in other states. They issue records upon request to individuals, government agencies, and other companies. Auto insurance companies use these records to set rates before insuring motorists. Employers may use them for background checks.

The state has a few different types of driver records, and they only allow users to get them online or through the mail. They do not offer driving reports in person at any of their locations. In addition, two of the record types are only available to the individual named on the record.

These records do contain personally identifiable information (PII). Therefore, anyone requesting records must comply with Driver Privacy Protection Act (DPPA) laws. The reports will have the driver's name, address, social security number, driver's license number, and date of birth on them. They will also have accident history, license status, driving convictions, traffic violations, license revocations, suspensions, and cancellations.

How to Request a Copy of Your Texas Driving History

The state offers two different ways for users to get a copy of their own or someone else's driving record. The first is online. When ordering a copy online, the requestor will need the driver's license number, date of birth, and last four digits of their social security number. They must also pay using a credit card. Once payment is processed, the user can print the record out for safekeeping.

The other way to order records is through the mail. They have a downloadable form someone can use to order various types of records. Along with the proper payment, they can mail the completed application to:

Texas Department of Public Safety
PO Box 149008
Austin, Texas 78714-9008

The wait might be up to three weeks when ordering records through the mail.

Companies and employers may email the office to get records that way.

Motor Vehicle Records Cost

The Department of Public Safety has a variety of reports available. The cost for each is different. See the list below for prices.

  • Type 1 Status Record - $4.00
  • Type 2 3-Year History - $6.00
  • Type 2A Certified 3-Year History - $10
  • Type 3 List of Crashes and Violations - $7
  • Type 3A Certified List of Crashes and Violations - $10.00
  • Type AR Certified Abstract of Complete Driver Record - $20

When paying online, the requestor can use Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express. When ordering through the mail, they must pay with a check or money order.

Driving Laws in the State

A Texas resident must be at least 15 to apply for their Learner's License. It will expire on their 18th birthday; at which time they can apply for their full license. To get a learner's license, the person must complete a driver's education course and take a written exam and a vision test. Drivers are restricted while on this license until they get their full license.

According to the Department of Public Safety, "Mandatory suspensions, revocations, and convictions for certain offenses involving fraudulent government records require an additional $100 reinstatement fee. Administrative License Revocations (ALR) require an additional $125 reinstatement fee. Some mandatory suspensions also require filing a Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate(SR-22)."

Some driving offenses that will result in immediate license suspension are:

  • Driving while intoxicated (DWI) by use of alcohol or drugs
  • Drug offense
  • Intoxication manslaughter or intoxication assault
  • Failure to stop and render aid
  • Causing the death or serious injury of anyone while operating a motor vehicle; involuntary manslaughter 6. Any offense punishable as a felony under the motor vehicle laws of Texas
  • Overtaking and passing a school bus (subsequent conviction)
  • Boating while intoxicated
  • Evading arrest
  • Driving while license invalid
  • Altered/unlawful use of a driver license
  • Displaying or possessing a fictitious or altered driver license or ID card
  • Lending a driver license or ID card to someone
  • Possessing more than one valid driver license or ID card
  • Providing false information or documents when applying for a driver license
  • Making, selling, or possessing a document deceptively similar to a driver license or ID card issued by DPS 17. Graffiti
  • Fictitious license plate, registration certificate, or safety inspection sticker
  • Fraudulent government records
  • Racing a motor vehicle on a public highway or street

The DPS has the authority to suspend or revoke a driver's license or privilege of any driver, after an opportunity for a proper hearing, for any of the reasons listed below. A reinstatement fee is required for all discretionary suspensions and revocations. Some examples of driving offenses that would result in an administrative suspension are:

  • Driving while license invalid
  • Causing a serious crash while driving a motor vehicle
  • Becoming incompetent to drive
  • Repeated violations of traffic laws, including:
  • Four or more traffic convictions occurring separately within any 12-month period
  • Seven or more traffic convictions within any 24-month period
  • Failure to complete a drug education program as required upon conviction of a drug offense
  • Failure to provide medical information when requested
  • Failure to take or pass a test when requested
  • Fleeing or attempting to flee from a law enforcement officer
  • Person has committed an offense in another state, which if committed in this state would be grounds for suspension or revocation 10. Fail to stop for a school bus (second conviction)
  • Violates a probation order set by a previous hearing

Some other driving laws from the DPS include:

  • You cannot send or receive electronic messages while driving in Texas
  • Drivers with learner's permits are prohibited from using cellphones in the first six months of driving
  • Using any handheld device in your vehicle in a school zone is illegal
  • Drivers under the age of 18 are prohibited from using handheld devices
  • School bus drivers may not use cellphones at all while driving if children are present
  • Cellphone laws can change from city to city
  • In Texas, the law requires everyone in a vehicle to buckle up or face fines and court costs up to $200. Children younger than 8 years must be in a child safety seat or booster seat unless they're taller than 4 feet 9 inches. If they aren't properly restrained, the driver faces fines up to $250, plus court costs
  • Texas law requires drivers to have basic liability coverage. If you don't have auto insurance, you can be fined up to $350 (or more if you've been ticketed before for no insurance). Be ready to show your insurance card if an officer asks you for it and inform your insurance company of a collision right away

Arrow signals and rules

  • Steady red arrow = Stop. No left turns allowed
  • Steady yellow arrow = Prepare to stop
  • Flashing yellow arrow = Left turns allowed, but you must yield to oncoming traffic
  • Steady green arrow = Left turns allowed and protected

Observing speed limits means more than driving faster or slower than the posted speed. When you encounter icy roads, drive through rain or fog, and approach heavy traffic or constructions zones, follow these tips:

  • Slow down and allow for more distance to stop
  • Look out for flashing beacons warning of intersections
  • Look for pavement markings to guide you
  • Watch for signs alerting you of reduced speed limits ahead

The state uses a points system for driving infractions. If someone earns four points in a 12-month period or seven over 24 months, their license will be suspended.

Different Types of Driving Reports in the State

The state offers six different driver record types that requestors can purchase. They are as follows:

  • Type 1 Status Record - $4.00
  • Type 2 3-Year History - $6.00
  • Type 2A Certified 3-Year History - $10
  • Type 3 List of Crashes and Violations - $7
  • Type 3A Certified List of Crashes and Violations - $10.00
  • Type AR Certified Abstract of Complete Driver Record - $20

Type 1 Status Record

This report includes the driver's name, date of birth (DOB), license status, and latest address.

Type 2 - 3-Year History

This report includes the driver's name, DOB, license status, list of accidents, and moving violations on record within a past 3-year period.

Type 2A - Certified 3-Year History

This is a certified driving record and a version of the Type 2 report, and this record is not acceptable for Defensive Driving Course (DDC).

Type 3 - List of Crashes and Violations

This report includes the driver's name, DOB, license status, list of all accidents and violations on record. Only available to the licensee.

Type 3A Driving Record - Certified List of Crashes and Violations

This report is a certified version of Type 3 record, and this record is acceptable for Defensive Driving Course (DDC). Only available to the licensee.

Type AR - Certified Abstract of Complete Driver Record

This record is a certified abstract of the complete driving record of a license holder.

Criminal Driving Offenses

Criminal driving offenses in the state are serious crimes punishable by huge fines, jail time, loss of license, points, and sometimes court-ordered programs (like a Texas defensive driving course). Some examples of criminal driving offenses are:

  • Reckless driving
  • DUI/DWI
  • Excessive speeding
  • Hit and run
  • Vehicular manslaughter
  • Eluding an officer

Civil Driving Offenses

Civil driving offenses are less serious crimes that usually result in a traffic ticket. Some examples of these types of traffic violations are:

  • Parking illegally
  • Running through a red light
  • Not stopping at a stop sign
  • Failure to yield
  • Tailgating

State Department of Motor Vehicles Driving Records Statistics

The state of Texas keeps track of all driver information and crash data to formulate safer roadways and promote highway safety. Some interesting facts for the last year they tallied are:

  • The Fatality Rate on Texas roadways for 2019 was 1.26 deaths per hundred million vehicle miles traveled. This is a 3.03% decrease from 2018
  • Texas experienced a decrease in the number of motor vehicle traffic fatalities. The 2019 death toll of 3,623 was a decrease of .09% from the 3,656 deaths recorded in 2018
  • There were 12,907 serious injury crashes in Texas in 2019, with 15,855 people sustaining a serious injury*
  • The annual vehicle miles traveled in Texas during 2019 reached 288.227 billion, an increase of 2.15% over the 282.037 billion traveled in 2018
  • Fatalities in traffic crashes in rural areas of the state accounted for 51.67% of the state's traffic fatalities. There were 1,872 deaths in rural traffic crashes
  • Single vehicle, run-off the road crashes resulted in 1,172 deaths in 2019. This was 32.35% of all motor vehicle traffic deaths in 2019
  • In 2019, there were 735 people killed in crashes occurring in intersections or related to an intersection
  • There were 597 people killed in head-on crashes in 2019
  • There were no deathless days on Texas roadways in 2019
  • There was one crash that resulted in 6 or more fatalities in 2019
  • Wednesday, June 5th and Saturday, December 7th was the deadliest day in 2019, with twenty-one (21) persons killed in traffic crashes. December was the deadliest month, with 334 persons killed
  • Based on reportable crashes in 2019: 1 person was killed every 2 hours 25 minutes, 1 person was injured every 2 minutes 3 seconds, 1 reportable crash occurred every 56 seconds
  • Of all persons killed in vehicles where restraint usage was applicable, and usage was known in 2019, 42.38% were reported as not restrained when the fatal crash occurred
  • 256,797 persons were injured in motor vehicle traffic crashes in 2019
  • There were 413 motorcyclists (operators and passengers) killed in 2019. Forty-five percent (45%) of motorcyclists killed were not wearing helmets at the time of the crash
  • Pedestrian fatalities totaled 661 in 2019. This is a 5.09% increase from 2018
  • Pedalcyclist fatalities totaled 68 in 2019. This is a 4.23% decrease from 2018
  • In 2019, there were 914 people killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes where a driver was under the influence of alcohol. This is 25% of the total number of people killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes
  • During 2019, more DUI - Alcohol crashes were reported in the hour between 2:00 am, and 2:59 am than any other hour of the day. Also, more of these crashes occurred on Saturday than any other day of the week
  • In 2019, there were 378 people killed in crashes involving distracted driving. This is a 6% decrease from 2018
  • There were no fatalities caused by a bridge collapse in 2019

Driver License Record Search Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some frequently asked questions about state driving records.

Who Can Get a Copy of Your Texas Driver Record?

You can get a copy of any of the reports. Employers, government agencies, and other companies can get a few of the driving record types with your authorization.

Can I Use the Online Systems to Get BMV Records?

Yes. Anyone can get a driver record online using the state system or get them through the mail. There is no in-person option.

What Information Do I Need to Get a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR)?

When requesting a copy of your driving record, you will need your name, address, the last four digits of your social security number, driver's license number, and date of birth.

Does the State Use a Points System?

Yes. If someone earns too many in 12 months, they will lose their license.

Helpful State Driving Record Links

Below are some helpful state driving record links.

Disclaimer: The materials presented here are for informational purposes only. The information is taken from state and local resources, and is current as of the most recent site update. Changes made by state and local departments and agencies after our latest update may render some information and fees outdated, and may cause links to break and forms to be unavailable. Infotracer strongly encourages you to visit the relevant state and local resources to ensure you have the most recent information.