Pennsylvania Learners Permit Application
If you have never held a drivers license issued by a different country or state and would like to get a license in Pennsylvania, you will have to start by applying for a Pennsylvania learners permit. A learners permit will give you a great chance to practice driving before you try to take a driving test. You can apply for a Pennsylvania drivers permit is you are at least 16 years of age, however if you are under 18 years of age, you will have to meet the graduated license requirements before a permit can be issued to you. Research the subject to make sure that your application for a PennDOT learners permit goes as smoothly as possible.
Graduated Drivers License Program
Today, most of the states around the nation have some kind of graduated license laws and Pennsylvania is no exception to the trend. The graduated drivers license law in Pennsylvania concerns everyone who chooses to apply for a Pennsylvania learners permit or driver license before the age of 18 and sets a number of additional requirements and restrictions for such applicants. The reason why the graduated license program came info being at all are high crash rates among teen drivers. Most of the causes that lead to accidents that involve teen drivers have already been identified, so now the Pennsylvania DOT is acting to eliminate these causes.
Driving is a serious thing, in fact, it's a very dangerous activity, something that gets overlooked by most drivers since driving is so deeply integrated into our lives. If you are careless or are unable to control a vehicle for a different reason, you may injure yourself and others around you. That's why before the DOT issues you with a Pennsylvania learners permit and allows you behind the wheel, you are required to prove that you have the health and knowledge required for operating a vehicle.
Since the DOT does not have specialist in the field of medicine, it relies on other professionals to conduct a medical evaluation of every permit applicant's health. What this means for you is that before you go to the PennDOT to apply for your Pennsylvania driving permit, you will have to download a Non-Commercial Learner's Permit Application form (DL-180) from the DOT website and have your health care provider fill out the back of the form. The form must be completed by a Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.), Medical Doctor (M.D.), Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner (C.R.N.P.), Physician’s Assistant (P.A.) or a Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.), no earlier than six months prior to your application date. Your vision exam will be conducted as part of this general health evaluation.
Drivers Permit Test
In order to prove that you know the state driving rules and regulation, you are required to take a Pennsylvania permit test as part of the application process. The test has 18 questions and you will need to give at least 15 correct answers in order to pass.
If you want to prepare for the learners permit test, you should grab yourself a copy of the Pennsylvania drivers permit book and read the rules outlined there. Once you have gone through the whole book, you may choose to take some Pennsylvania permit practice tests that will help you determine how well you've memorized those driving rules.
When you are applying for a Pennsylvania DOT permit, you are required to present certain paperwork, to prove that you are the one you are saying you are. Please be prepared to present the following documents when you come in to apply for your learners permit:
- Non-Commercial Learner's Permit Application DL -180
- proof of date of birth
- proof of identification
- Social Security Number
- a check or a money order made out to Pennsylvania Department of Transportation
If you are under 18 years of age, you must also present a Parent or Guardian Consent form DL -180 TD, which must be signed by a parent or legal guardian in front of the DOT representative. If the person who's signing the consent form is unable to make it to the DOT, the signature must be notarized.
Applying for a Drivers Permit - Under 18 Years of Age
You can apply for a Pennsylvania learners permit as soon as you turn 16 years of age. Just study the drivers permit handbook, then collect the required paperwork, visit the DOT and take the permit test. If the paperwork checks out and you pass the learners permit test, you are issued with your Pennsylvania drivers permit.
Applying for a Learners Permit - 18 Years of Age and Older
If you are already 18 years of age, you do not have to follow the graduated license rules, however all testing procedures are exactly the same as for younger PA drivers permit applicants. Study the rules, gather the paperwork, go down to the PennDOT testing site, take the drivers permit test and if you pass, you have yourself a Pennsylvania learners permit.
Operating Under a Permit
The main reason why the DOT issues you with a driving permit is to allow you to practice driving before you take a Pennsylvania drivers test. However, in order to keep you safe during this practice period, the DOT enforces a number of limitations onto your permit. The most important Pennsylvania permit restriction is the fact that you cannot drive alone and must have another licensed driver seated next to you whenever you are driving. Your supervising driver must be at least 18 years of age if it's your parent, legal guardian or your spouse and 21 years of age if it;'s someone else. Needless to say, the supervising driver must hold a valid Pennsylvania drivers license.
For teenagers, the permit must be held for at least six months. Older drivers can apply for a Pennsylvania drivers license as soon as they feel confident enough behind the wheel.