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Utah Learners Permit Restrictions - UT Driving Permit Rules

Utah Permit Restrictions

If you recently received a Utah learners permit, you should be aware of the restrictions that come with it. Utah learners permit restrictions were designed to keep you safe until you gain some driving experience and observance of these restrictions is in your best interest. The permit restrictions that apply to your Utah drivers permit largely depend on your age, as teenagers must also meet the requirements of the state graduated license law. If you fail to observe the Utah permit or license restrictions, your driving privilege may be suspended or completely revoked.

You may be wondering why is there a need for these restrictions and the what is the idea behind issuing Utah drivers license applicants with a learners permit first, instead of granting them full driving privileges right away? The reason it is done this way is because the Department of Public Safety wants you to have a chance to acquire some driving experience before you go in to take your Utah drivers license test. That's why you are granted a learners permit first and your learners permit allows you to get behind the wheel and practice driving, provided you observe the learners permit restrictions.

Permit Restrictions - Over 18 Years of Age

If you are at least 18 years of age when you receive your Utah drivers permit, there are not that many restrictions for you to observe. The DPS trusts that you, as a responsible adult, will observe all safety precautions. The only real limitation to your learners permit is that you cannot drive alone. Whenever you are behind the wheel, you must have a licensed driver at least 21 years of age seated next to you. The supervising driver should coach you on the subject of safe driving practices and be prepared to take control of the vehicle should you make a mistake. This way, you always have a more experienced driver who can help whenever you are driving, which should strike some confidence into you and help you avoid getting into trouble.

Although this is the only real restriction to your Utah instruction permit, you still have to meet the same testing and drivers education requirements as younger drivers. Before you will be issued with a learners permit, you are required to pass a Utah permit test that covers the state driving laws, traffic signs and safe driving practices. More than a half of the first time test takers fail the exam. If you want to see what kind of questions will be on the test, treat yourself to to the free Utah permit practice test.

You can obtain more information about the drivers ed requirements in the official Utah drivers handbook. The handbook can also serve as a guide to those studying for the written permit test.

Permit Restrictions - Under 18 Years of Age

If you are under 18 years of age, you will need to meet the Utah graduated drivers license requirements as well as observe permit restrictions that apply to older drivers. Once you pass the required exam and get your drivers permit, you are to observe the following restrictions:

  • No driving alone. You must another licensed driver at least 21 years of age seated next to you at all time while you are driving. The supervising driver can be your parent, legal guardian, a professional driving instructor or another driver who signs for financial responsibility.
  • No cell phones. You cannot use any communication devices while driving.
  • Seat belts. Seat belts must be worn by everyone present in the vehicle.

These Utah permit restrictions must be observed for at least six months. During this period, you must also fulfill other graduated license requirements, such as completing a Utah drivers education class and at least 40 hours of supervised driving, with at least 10 hours done at night.

Once the six months holding period is over and you complete other drivers permit requirements, you can take a Utah drivers test and obtain your first drivers license.

Intermediate Drivers License

If you are under 18 years of age, you cannot upgrade straight from a learners permit to a full drivers license, you have to go through the intermediate drivers license stage. Although an intermediate license allows unsupervised driving, it has its own set of restrictions:

  • Passenger restrictions. No passengers under the age of 18 who are not members of the driver's immediate family are allowed to be in the vehicle during the first six months following the license issuance. This restriction may be excused if there is a licensed driver at least 21 years of age seated in the front seat next to the licensee.
  • Night time driving restriction. The curfew hours are midnight to 5 a.m. and you cannot drive during this time. The restriction may be lifted if you are traveling to/from a school or employment activity or when you are supervised by another licensed driver at least 21 years of age.

The nighttime driving restriction applies only to drivers under the age of 17.

Make sure to follow all Utah drivers permit restrictions while you are driving. The state reserves the right to cancel your driving privilege should you be caught breaking your learners permit or graduated license restrictions.