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So you've taken your first step towards becoming a new driver in New York? Congratulations!
As you probably already know, driving is a valuable skill, but can also be extremely dangerous. Therefore, to help new teen drivers develop safe driving habits during their first few years behind the wheel, the State of New York has implemented a graduated driver license program for New York drivers who are under the age of 18.
We’ve summarized a few things you’ll need to know as you begin the process of becoming a licensed driver in New York.
You can apply for a New York instruction permit when you turn 16. When you go down to the driver's license office, please take the following items:
At the driver's license office, you will need to first pass a vision screening test, and then pass a written test before being issued an instruction permit.
With an instruction permit, the following restrictions apply:
To apply for a provisional license, you must meet the following requirements:
When you're ready to try to get your provisional license, call your local driver's license office and make an appointment to take your road test. When you go to your appointment, take the same ID forms and paperwork you took the last time you went along with your instruction permit and money for the license fee.
To get a provisional license, you will have to pass a road test.
With a provisional license, some restrictions will still apply:
After 12 months, if you have kept a clean driving record, you may apply for full driver's license if you pass the road test. With a full license, the above restrictions are removed.
The State of New York requires that you maintain a certain amount of liability coverage on any vehicle you drive. The minimum required coverage is as follows:
Driving while uninsured is a crime! If you drive without the required insurance coverage, you will face having your license suspended, plus a hefty fine.
Drinking while under the influence of alcohol is strictly prohibited in New York, and the law is strictly enforced.
Upon your FIRST New York DUI conviction, you will face the following penalties:
Further DUI convictions will result in even more severe penalties, including extended jail time, community service, and the revocation of your driver's license.
Currently, New York law prohibits teen-aged drivers from using cell phones while they are driving unless they are hands-free. Violation of this law will go on your driving record.
For more information on drivers education including a list of approved drivers ed courses in New York, please visit the New York DMV website.