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Apply for a Drivers License

Drivers License Application

Applying for a drivers license can be an overwhelming experience and most of the first time applicants don't even know where to start. Preparation is the key so you should always start by studying your state driving laws, traffic rules and road signs as these are the things you will be tested on during the knowledge permit test at your local DMV. Your state application procedures may also include additional testing procedures, such as taking a vision exam and a drivers test. Teenagers applying for a drivers license will need to meet a number of other requirements as dictated by the graduate license law.

Applying for a drivers license - Under 18 Years of Age

If you choose to apply for a drivers license before you turn 18, chances are that you will need to meet a number of additional drivers license requirements as dictated by your state graduated drivers license law. The law targets teen drivers and aims at reducing the number of fatalities that result from traffic accidents.

You can start the application process by obtaining a copy of your state drivers manual. The book is usually published and distributed by the Department of Motor Vehicle and it contains everything you need to know about the state driving law. The book can also help you find the legal driving age for your state.

If you meet age requirements, visit a local DMV office and take a learners permit test. The test covers the state driving laws and road signs and you can learn these things from the drivers license handbook you have picked up earlier. In case you find yourself in need of some extra study materials, you may also take some free practice permit tests online.

Once you successfully pass the exam, you are issued with a learners permit. The permit allows you to start your driving practice and must be held for a certain period of time, usually from three months to a year. During this period, you have to observe all drivers permit restrictions and meet other graduated drivers license requirements, such as completion of a drivers education course (please note: some states require you to complete a drivers education class even before you apply for a learners permit). Once all of the above requirements are met, you can schedule a road test and apply for a drivers license.

When you pass a drivers license test, you are not granted full driving privileges right away and are issued with a provisional drivers license instead. A provisional drivers license allows unsupervised driving, but still has a number of limitations. These drivers license restrictions must be observed for a period of three to twelve months and once it is over, you can visit a local DMV office and apply for a full drivers license.

Applying for a drivers license - 18 Years of Age and older

The application procedure for those who are already 18 years of age is usually must easier than the one for teenage drivers, however the testing requirements are usually the same. You must start by visiting a DMV office and taking a knowledge exam and a vision test. Once you pass the exam, you are issued with a learners permit that allows you to practice driving under supervision of a more experienced driver. There is usually no minimum amount of time that you have to hold a permit for, but we advise that you run this by the DMV.

Once you have gained sufficient driving skills, you schedule a drivers test at the DMV and if you are successful, you are issued with a full unrestricted drivers license. There is usually no provisional license step for those who apply for a drivers license after they turn 18 years of age.

Tests Required

When you choose to apply for a drivers license, you will be required to take a number of tests, such as an eye exam, a knowledge test and a driving test. Some states will also require you to undergo a medical evaluation with a physician.

Permit Test

A drivers permit test consists of 20 to 50 multiple choice questions and the passing score is usually around 80%. You can prepare for the permit test by reading the drivers handbook and taking practice permit tests. Completion of a drivers education course is also highly recommended.

Vision Exam

In order to pass the vision test, a person must have 20/40 acuity with both eyes, with or without glasses. If you choose to take a vision exam while wearing glasses or contact lenses, you will be restricted to driving only while wearing those. A special restriction code will be placed onto your license.

Drivers Test

A drivers license test is the final step of the application process and it requires you to prove that you are able to control a vehicle. The driving test includes a number of common driving maneuvers most drivers perform every day. In addition to that, your ability to observe traffic regulations and road signs will also be tested. Drivers license testing is conducted on appointment-only basis.

Required Documents

The list of documents that you need to present at the DMV when applying for a drivers license varies little between states. In most cases, you will need to present some proof of id, proof of residency, age and your social security number. Depending the state graduated license requirements, teenage applicants may have to present a drivers ed certificate of completion, a school attendance form and a parental consent form before they can be issued with a permit or a license.