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Frequently Asked Questions - New Jersey Teen Driver

The State of New Jersey has the following restrictions:

Student Learner’s Permit
• You must be accompanied by an adult driver who is at least 21 year or older and has a valid New Jersey driver’s license with a minimum of three years of driving experience.
• You can only drive between the hours of 5 am and 11 pm.
• You can only have one passenger in the vehicle unless accompanied by your parent or legal guardian.
• You are allowed to have passengers in the car if they are your parent, legal guardian or dependent child.
• You are prohibited from using any type of wireless communication device while driving.
• Seat belts must be worn at all times by everyone in the vehicle.
• You must have a reflective decal on both the front and back license plates of your vehicle. These are available at New Jersey motor vehicle agencies and cost $4 for each pair.

Examination Permit
• You can only drive between the hours of 5 am and 11 pm when accompanied by an adult driver who is at least 21 year or older and has a valid New Jersey driver’s license with a minimum of three years of driving experience.
• You are allowed to have passengers in the car if they are your parent, legal guardian or dependent child.
• You are prohibited from using any type of wireless communication device while driving.

Probationary License
• You are prohibited from driving after 11:01 pm and before 5:00 am.
• You must be accompanied by an adult driver who is at least 21 year or older and has a valid New Jersey driver’s license with a minimum of three years of driving experience.
• You are allowed to have passengers in the car if they are your parent, legal guardian or dependent child.
• You can only have one passenger in the vehicle unless accompanied by your parent or legal guardian.
• Seat belts must be worn at all times by everyone in the vehicle.
• You must have a reflective decal on both the front and back license plates of your vehicle. These are available at New Jersey motor vehicle agencies and cost $4 for each pair.

Drivers under the age of 21 who have a permit or probationary license are eligible for an hours-related exemption for employment or religious reasons. They must carry documentation signed by the employer or religious organization stating the reason for the request. The document must be on letterhead with the title, address, telephone number and signature of the designated official.

The State of New Jersey requires drivers to pass the following tests:

Knowledge Test
• The knowledge test consists of 50 questions and you must answer 40 of the questions correctly to pass the test. The test is available in English, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

Vision Test
• You must be able to pass the vision test with an acuity of 20/50 in the better eye with or without using corrective lenses.

Road Test
• The examiner will test you on the following items:

1. Driving in reverse
2. Following other vehicles
3. Nearing corners and intersections
4. Parallel parking
5. Sitting properly
6. Starting a vehicle
7. Steering properly
8. Stopping at signs
9. Stopping smoothly
10. Turning
11. Turning around
12. Using the horn
13. Yielding right-of-way

All vehicles must have a valid inspection sticker, registration and valid insurance identification card.

The New Jersey MVC requires applicants to submit at least one primary document, one secondary document, proof of residency and a verifiable Social Security number. If you are not eligible for a Social Security number, you must provide an exemption letter from the Social Security Administration. All documents must be original or certified copies, in English, and have the required state and/or municipal seals. Certified copies of New Jersey records are available from the municipality that originally issued them and from the New Jersey State Bureau of Vital Statistics. Birth certificates issued before July 1, 2010, by the Puerto Rico Department of Health will not be accepted as proof of identification. Check with the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration website for instructions on how to apply for a new certificate. All applicants must have the required documents to satisfy the 6-Point ID verification.

Primary Documents (U.S. Citizen) 4-Point Documents
• Civil birth certificate or certified copy from one of the 50 states, District of Columbia or a U.S. territory. (Photocopies or certificates from hospitals or religious entities are not accepted.)
• U.S. Department of State birth certificate (Form FS-545, FS-240 or DS-1350)
• U.S. passport, current or expired less than three years
• Current U.S. passport card
• Current New Jersey digital driver license
• Current New Jersey digital non-driver identification card
• Current New Jersey digital boat license
• Valid active duty U.S. military photo identification card
• U.S. adoption papers
• Certificate of naturalization (Form N-550, N-570 or N-578)
• Certificate of citizenship (Form N-560, N-561 or N-645)

Primary Documents (Non Citizens) 4-Point Documents (Additional requirements may apply)
• Foreign passport with INS or USCIS verification and valid record of arrival/departure (Form I-94)
• Foreign passport with INS or USCIS verification and valid Form I-551 stamp
• Current alien registration card (new Form I-551) with expiration date and verification from INS or USCIS
• Refugee travel document (Form I-571)
• U.S. re-entry permit (Form I-327)
• Valid I-94 stamped “Refugee”, “Parolee”, “Asylee” or “Notice of Action” (Form I-797 approved petition) by INS or USCIS
• Valid I-94 with attached photo stamped “Processed for I-551” by INS or USCIS

3-Point Documents
• Current photo employment authorization card (Form I-688B) or I-766). Must be presented with valid Social Security card.

2-Point Documents
• Current alien registration card (old Form I-551) without expiration date and with INS or USCIS verification
• Photo temporary resident card (Form I-688)

Proof of New Jersey Address
• Utility or credit card bill issued in the past 90 days that shows your name at your current address. (Mail addressed to P.O. boxes are not accepted a proof of address.)
• Checking or savings account statement from a bank or credit union, issued in the past 60 days
• High school or college report card or transcript containing your address issued, in the past 60 days
• Original lease or rental agreement showing your name as the lessee or renter
• Property tax bill, statement or receipt from the past year
• Any letter or correspondence (including tax bills) received from the IRS or state tax office in the last year
• First-class mail received from any federal, state or local government agency in the past six months
• If you are under 18, the MVC will accept a Parent of Guardian Certification that verifies you are living with a parent or guardian.

Secondary Documents
3-Point Documents
• Civil marriage, domestic partnership or civil union certificate issued by the municipality or state in which the ceremony occurred. (Photocopies or certificates issued by religious entities are not acceptable.)
• Order or decree of divorce, dissolution or termination
• Court order for a legal name change, signed by a judge or court clerk
• Current U.S. military dependent card
• U.S military photo retiree card
• Valid New Jersey firearm purchaser card

2-Point Documents
• U.S. school photo identification card with transcript or school records
• U.S. college photo identification card with transcript
• Valid federal, state or local government employee driver license
• Valid federal, state or local government employee photo identification card
• U.S. military discharge papers (DD-214)
• FAA pilot license

1-Point Documents (You cannot use more than two of these)
• Current/expired less than one year non-digital New Jersey photo driver license
• Current photo driver license from any other state or the District of Columbia
• Social Security card
• ATM card with pre-printed name and applicant’s signature. (An ATM card and bank statement cannot be submitted together.)
• Current health insurance card, prescription card
• Employee identification card with printed pay stub
• State professional license
• New Jersey public assistance card with photo (Also known as a New Jersey Social Services Identification card.)
• High school diploma, GED or college diploma
• Property tax statement, bill or receipt issued by a New Jersey municipality
• For New Jersey high school students—A waiver certificate for the written portion of the driver’s test
• Veterans Affairs universal access photo identification card

Legal Proof of Name Change (If your current legal name is different from the name on your civil birth certificate, you must show legal proof of name change.)
• Certified marriage certificate or civil union certificate
• Divorce Decree containing new name and previous name and permits a return to using the previous name
• Court order linking new name with a previous name

To complete the 6-point ID verification, the MVC will verify that your Social Security number matches your name and birth date on record with the Social Security Administration database.

When applying for a permit or license in New Jersey, you must do the following:

• Fill out the application for a permit or license.
• Your instructor must purchase the Student Learner’s Permit.
• You must present a completed consent from signed by a parent or legal guardian if under 18.
• You must provide full name, current address, Social Security number and 6-Point ID verification.
• You must pay the appropriate permit or license fee.

All permit and probationary drivers must have a red reflective decal on both the front and rear license plates of the vehicle.

You must complete a state-approved driver education program through your high school or a commercial provider. The course generally includes:

• 32 hours of computer based instruction
• 14 hours of behind-the-wheel driver training

The program will also cover information about drug and alcohol abuse.

The New Jersey MVC has the following requirements when applying for a driver’s license:

Probationary License
• You must be at least 17 years old.
• You must have completed six months of supervised driving without any suspensions or postponements.
• You must pass the 6-Point ID verification.
• You must pass the MVC road test.

You must apply for a basic driver license one year from the date your Probationary License was issued.

Basic Driver License
• You must be at least 18 years old.
• You must have completed one year of unsupervised driving with probationary driver license restrictions.
• You must pass the 6-Point ID verification.
• You must pay the license fee of $24.

The MVC accepts cash, checks, money orders, VISA, MasterCard and the American Express card.

Before applying for a learner’s permit, you should study the New Jersey Driver Manual, which covers the following topics:

• Chapter 1—The New Jersey Driver License System
• Chapter 2—New Jersey Driver Testing
• Chapter 3—Driver Responsibility
• Chapter 4—Safe Driving Rules & Regulations
• Chapter 5—Defensive Driving
• Chapter 6—Drinking, Drugs & Health
• Chapter 7—Driver Privileges & Penalties
• Chapter 8—Sharing the Road with Others
• Chapter 9—Vehicle Information
• Chapter 10—Essential Driver Information
• Chapter 11—Motorcycle Manual

The manual can be found online at the New Jersey MVC website or at any MVC office.

It is a good idea to create a Parent/Teen Driving Agreement that outlines specific guidelines for teen drivers to follow. It should include some of the following:

• To obey the posted speed limit
• To consider weather and road conditions and adjust speed appropriately
• Not to drive when angry, frustrated or emotional
• Not to tailgate, speed or weave in and out of traffic
• Not to participate in any aggressive or reckless driving behavior
• The consequences for violating the agreement

Parents can promise to be a role model and lead by demonstrating responsible and safe driving practices.

There are no specific restrictions for new drivers, however all drivers under the age of 21 with a learner’s permit or probationary license are prohibited from using any type of hand-held or hands-free electronic wireless device while driving, including iPods.

The State of New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) Graduated Driver License (GDL) program has the following options for first-time drivers:

Student Learner’s Permit
• You must be at least 16 years old.
• You must be able to pass the knowledge and vision tests.
• You must pass the 6-Point ID verification.
• You must be enrolled in an approved behind-the-wheel driver-training course through the New Jersey Department of Education or commercial driving school. The MVC will validate Student Learner’s Permits only after completion of the driver-training program.
• You must have the written consent of your parent or legal guardian.
• You must pay the student permit fee of $10.
• An approved instructor must purchase the permit.

Examination Permit
• You must be at least 17 years old.
• You must be able to pass the knowledge and vision tests.
• You must pass the 6-Point ID verification.
• You must pay the examination permit fee of $10.

You must carry the permit with you when operating a motor vehicle. Both permits are valid for a period of two years.