What are the junior license restrictions?

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Junior license restrictions vary from state to state; check the grid below.

NOTE: This grid deals with junior drivers licenses that, for the purposes of this answer, are the licenses you get after you get a learners permit and before you get a full drivers license. If your state doesn’t provide a provisional license, the grid notes the name of the learners or instruction permit it does provide, and that is the permit you should contact your DMV about.

Different states have different names for junior licenses. Some states call them junior licenses, and others refer to them as provisional licenses, intermediate licenses, or learners licenses. You might even find the name is unique to your state; Arizona, for example, calls its provisional license a Class G License.

Junior licenses provide extra learning time for new drivers. At this stage in the game, chances are high you’ve already completed a drivers ed or training course that has helped you learn the rules of the road and learn basic driving skills. Having a junior license gives you more time to practice everything you’ve learned – with some restrictions, of course.

Junior license restrictions vary from state to state, but most of them deal with at what times you can drive and who you’re allowed to have as passengers.

In the grid below, when you see:

  • No Night, it means your state doesn’t allow you to drive during certain nighttime hours.
  • Accompanied Night, it means that as long as you’re accompanied by a licensed parent, guardian, or other adult, you can drive at night.
  • Passengers, it means you’re allowed to have only a certain number of passengers with you, and sometimes those passengers must meet age or relationship requirements.
  • Seatbelts, it means you and all your passengers must where seatbelts when you’re driving.
Because junior license restrictions vary by state, this grid doesn’t include all the fine print. For example, if your state places restrictions on passengers, it might be that you can only have one passenger younger than 18 or it might mean that you can have no passengers that aren’t related to you. Keep in mind that state’s can change their restrictions, too.

Therefore, it’s best to contact your DMV, visit its Web site, or consult your driver handbook to make sure you completely understand your state’s junior license restrictions.  

No Night Accompanied Night Passengers Seatbelts
Alabama
x
x
Offers only a Learners Permit with additional restrictions for ages 16 and 17
Alaska
x
x
Arizona
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, employment, religious activities, family emergencies
Arkansas
x
x
California California’s provisional permit acts as a regular learners permit
Colorado Offers only a Minors Instruction Permit
Connecticut Offers only a Learners Permit
Delaware Offers only a Learners Permit
Florida
x
Unaccompanied night driving for job
Georgia
x
x
Hawaii Offers only a Learners Permit
Idaho
x
x
Illinois Offers only an Instruction Permit
Indiana Offers only a Learners Permit
Iowa
x
x
x
Waiver for unaccompanied night driving for work
Kansas
x
Restricted day driving; unaccompanied night driving for school, work, religious activities, farm
Kentucky Offers only an Instruction Permit
Louisiana
x
Maine Offers only a Teen License
Maryland
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work; no cell phones
Massachusetts
x
x
Michigan
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work
Minnesota
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work
Mississippi
x
Missouri
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work
Montana
x
x
Nebraska
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work
Nevada Only offers an Instruction Permit.
New Hampshire
x
x
x
New Jersey
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, religious activities; no cell phones
New Mexico Offers only a Learners Permit
New York
x
x
North Carolina
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work; no cell phones
North Dakota Offers only an Instruction Permit
Ohio
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work
Oklahoma
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work, religious activities
Oregon
x
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work
Pennsylvania
x
Rhode Island
x
South Carolina
x
x
South Dakota
x
Tennessee
x
x
x
Intermediate Restricted/Unrestricted; unrestricted allows unaccompanied night driving
Texas
x
x
Night driving allowed if school, work, emergency; no cell phones
Utah
x
Unaccompanied night driving for school, work, farm assignment, emergency
Vermont
x
Can’t be employed to drive
Virginia Offers only a Learners Permit
Washington Offers only an Intermediate Drivers License that acts as a learners permit
West Virginia Offers only an Instruction Permit that acts as a learners permit
Wisconsin
x
x
Wyoming
x
x
x
This is for the Graduated Drivers License; state has several permits below this one; contact your DMV
Washington DC
x
x
x
This is for Graduated Drivers License; state has several permits below this one; contact your DMV

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