Eng Esp

Apply for North Carolina Learners Permit

North Carolina Drivers Permit Application

Trying to obtain a North Carolina driver's license and have never been licensed before? In this case, you will have to go through an intermediate permit stage first. If you are under 18 years of age, you will need to start by applying for a North Carolina limited learners permit and then continue on through the state's graduated license program. Those who are already at least 18 years of age are not subjected to the program and can apply for a North Carolina learners permit right away. Either way, all North Carolina permit applicants have to take a vision exam and a North Carolina permit test, so make sure to study the state driving rules before you visit a DOT office near you.

Graduated Drivers License Requirements

North Carolina's graduated driver's license program applies to anyone who chooses to obtain a drivers license before reaching the age of 18 and that is not discrimination against minors. The reason why the licensing system is built this way is the fact that teenagers have crash rates that are significantly higher than those for older drivers. On top of that, teenagers are also more likely to be injured in a crash since they frequently ignore basic safety procedure, such as wearing a seat belt.

The graduated license program was created to combat the factors that contribute to these dreadful stats. This is achieved by providing teenage drivers permit applicants with extra education and more supervised driving practice before they are allowed to start driving alone. The program was proven to be a great success throughout the whole country.

Drivers Education

Every North Carolina limited learner's permit applicant has to complete a state-approved drivers education course prior to submitting a permit application at the DOT. North Carolina drivers education courses are offered through public schools and commercial driving schools. Note that online drivers education classes are not endorsed by the state.

If you are applying for a regular learners permit, you are not mandated to complete a drivers education course, however you may still wish to do so since it's a great way to learn the state driving rules and to prepare for the DOT permit test. Taking a drivers education class may also make you eligible for an insurance discount, so give drivers ed a thought before you apply for a North Carolina drivers permit.

Required Testing

Driving is a very serious business and the DOT needs to make sure that you are mentally and physically capable of operating a vehicle. When you apply for a North Carolina learner's permit, you will be required to take a number of tests that will evaluate your health and your familiarity with the state driving rules.

Vision Exam

When applying for a drivers permit, you have to meet certain vision standards. Since vehicles travel at high speed, you must have good sight to be able to identify and prevent any potentially dangerous situation. When you submit your application for a North Carolina learner's permit, you vision will be checked. If you wear contact lenses during the vision exam, you will be required to wear them all the time while driving, a special restriction will be placed onto you North Carolina drivers license.

Learners Permit Test

A learners permit test in North Carolina combines a knowledge exam on the state driving rules with a traffic signs test. More than a half of first time North Carolina permit applicants fail the test, mostly due to the fact that they do not study for it. Make sure you do not make the same mistake.

The state offers you many options when it comes to preparing for the learners permit test. First, there are drivers education courses, which are already mentioned above. Than there is the North Carolina learners permit manual, which is provided by the DOT free of charge. Finally, there are also North Carolina practice permit tests that you could take before you go in for the real one.

Required Paperwork

A North Carolina learner's permit can be used as an ID, so before you are issued with one, the DOT needs to make sure that you are really the one you say you are and that you are eligible to receive a drivers permit. In order to prove that, you will be required to provide the following paperwork:

  • proof of identity
  • proof of North Carolina residency
  • proof of birth date
  • proof of citizenship or legal presence

North Carolina limited learner's permit applicants will also need to show proof of school attendance or completion and a drivers education certificate. A parent or legal guardian must accompany the applicant to the testing site and co-sign the application for a drivers permit. A minor cannot apply for a North Carolina drivers license without parental consent.

Applying for a Provisional Learners Permit - Under 18 Years of Age

You must be at least 15 years of age in order to be eligible to submit your application for a North Carolina limited drivers permit. By the time you take your application form down to the DOT, you must already have completed a state-approved drivers education course (you will be asked to show a drivers education certificate of completion at the DOT). If these requirements are met, you can visit the DOT, take a vision test, a learners permit test and receive your North Carolina drivers permit. A parent or legal guardian must come to the testing site with you and certify that they consent to you obtaining a learners permit. Without parental consent, you will not be issued with a permit.

Applying for a Learners Permit - 18 Years of Age and Older

If you are at least 18 years of age, you do not have to follow the graduated license rules, however you must still submit to the same testing procedures when applying for a North Carolina learner's permit. Visit the nearest DOT office where you can take a vision exam and a drivers permit test. Once you pass the tests and your paperwork is verified, you are issued with a driver permit.

Operating Under a Permit

One thing you should not forget is that neither a limited learners permit nor a learners permit grant you full driving privileges. The main reason why you were issued with a permit is to allow you to practice for the North Carolina drivers test. You are not allowed to drive alone and must have a supervising driver accompany you whenever you are behind the wheel. You must also observe all North Carolina permit restrictions until you pass the drivers test and receive your drivers license. Please note that if you are under 18 years of age when you pass the drivers test, you are issued with a level two limited provisional license and you still have to observe North Carolina provisional license restrictions until you finish the state's graduated license program.