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Apply for Colorado Drivers License

Colorado Drivers License Application

Applying for a drivers license in Colorado is not that much different from applying for a drivers license in any other states. The exam licensing procedure that you need to follow depends on two things: your age and whether you have previously held a driver license in some other state or country. Those who wish to apply for a Colorado driver license before their 18th birthday need to familiarize themselves with the graduated drivers license requirements and restrictions. In most cases, Colorado driver's license applicants are required to take three examinations: a vision test, a written knowledge exam and an actual driving test.

Under 18 Years of Age

As already mentioned above, if you want to apply for a drivers license before you are 18 years of age, you must follow Colorado's graduated driver license program. The program consist of a set of rules and requirements that were designed to allow young drivers to accumulate driving experience in a relatively safe driving environment and to get them through the most dangerous first years of driving.

The minimum age for entering the program is 15 years, since this is the age when you can get a drivers permit. Please note that if you choose to get a permit at this age, you must complete a DMV-approved Colorado drivers education course first and you will be issued with a drivers education permit. Since there are a few different types of permits available and each one has its own requirements, we advise that you check out the article that explains how you can apply for a Colorado drivers permit, it will help you decide which permit is right for you.

When you visit the DMV to get your permit, you will be required to go through vision screening and to take a written knowledge exam that assesses your familiarity with Colorado driving rules and traffic signs. Should you pass the tests, you are issued with a permit and you get one step closer to your Colorado driver's license.

The permit will need to be held for not less than 12 months before you can go ahead and apply for a driver license. During these months, you are to receive at least 50 hours of driving practice from a parent or legal guardian and you must make sure to observe all Colorado permit restrictions while driving. If you want to take the driving test before you are 16 years, 6 months of age, you must also complete 6 hours of driving lessons with a professional driving instructor.

When the holding period is up, you take a drivers license test and receive your first Colorado drivers license. Be advised that your licensed is marked as provisional and you must observe all Colorado provisional license restrictions for the next 12 months.

18 Years of Age and Older

Applying for a drivers license in Colorado is easy when you are at least 18 years of age. At this age, graduated license rules do not apply to you and it will not take you long to get a full unrestricted license.

You should start by studying the Colorado drivers license manual. You must learn traffic rules and road signs that are presented in the book so you can pass your written permit test. Once you are ready for the test, visit a local DMV branch, take a vision exam and the permit test and receive your instruction permit.

The instruction permit allows you to practice driving while being supervised by another driver at least 21 years of age who holds a valid drivers license. There is no certain period of time that you need to hold the permit for and you can go ahead and apply for a driver license as soon as you feel comfortable behind the wheel. You will be required to take a driving test at that point, so make sure you really know what you're doing before you head down to the DMV to file the application.

Once you pass the drivers test, you are issued with a temporary drivers license that is valid for 30 days. Your real Colorado driver license is mailed to you and should arrive within 2-3 weeks. If you do not receive it within this period, you should get in touch with the DMV to check upon its status.

Required Tests

Every first time driver license applicant in Colorado is required to take a vision exam, a written knowledge test and a driving test.

Vision Standards

The following vision requirements must be met if you wish to apply for an unrestricted Colorado driver license:

  • minimum vision acuity 20/40
  • peripheral vision of 120 degrees

If you are unable to meet these requirements, you will be referred to an eye care specialist for correction of the problem. The eye specialist will write up a report which will allow the DMV to determine the extent of the problem. In some cases, a restriction that will limit you to driving during daylight hours only may be placed onto your license.

Drivers Permit Test

A drivers permit test is based on the information provided by the DMV in the drivers license manual, so unless you have taken a drivers education course, you should go ahead and study the manual before you visit the DMV for the test. The exam consists of multiple choice questions and you need to get a score of at least 80% in order to pass.

You do not need to make an appointment for your Colorado driver permit test and you can visit any full service DMV branch during their regular business hours to take the test. You should arrive at least 45 minutes before closing time to allow sufficient time for testing.

Those who are not sure whether they are ready to tackle the exam may help themselves to Colorado driver practice tests that are offered free of charge. Practice tests cover the same topics as the real exam, so they should give you a good idea of how well you know the rules.

Drivers Test

This is the final exam that you need to take when you are applying for a drivers license in Colorado. The drivers test is the ultimate assessment of your knowledge of the state driving rules and your ability to control the vehicle. Unlike the knowledge exam, the driving test must be scheduled well in advance.

Please note that the DMV does not offer vehicles for driver testing and it will be up to you to provide a vehicle to take your Colorado drivers license test in. The vehicle must be registered and you must have liability insurance.

Required Paperwork

The DMV requires you to present the following documents when you go through the process of applying for a Colorado driver license:

  • proof of age
  • proof of identity
  • proof of lawful presence
  • Social Security Number
  • proof of Colorado residency

On top of that, if you are applying for a license before your 18th birthday, one of your parents will need to sign an affidavit of liability, accepting responsibility for any damages your driving may incur. You must also present a log form for 50 hours of supervised driving and a drivers education certificate of completion (if you apply for a drivers education permit).