Getting a Massachusetts driver’s license involves a number of steps. If you’ve never held a license before, you’ll have to start out by getting a learner’s permit, then a junior license, and then finally an unrestricted license. If you’re over 18, the process is a bit different.
We’ll go through all you need to know in this guide.
The first step is getting a learner’s permit, which is valid for two years. Before you can start the application for your permit, you must be at least age 16; and if you’re under 18 you must have parental consent.
To receive your learner’s permit, you first need to pass the written exam. There are 25 questions and you need to answer at least 17 correctly to pass. The exam is currently offered online, but you should know that about 50% fail their test nation-wide, so you need to come prepared.
Once you have your permit, you may drive under the supervision of a licensed adult who is at least 21 years old and has had their license for at least one year. You need to log at least 40 hours of supervised driving before you may sit the road test.
If you would like to know more about this part of the licensing process, we recommend that you read our in-depth Massachusetts learner’s permit guide.
If you want to get your Massachusetts driver’s license and you’re under 18, you are required to complete an approved driver’s education program. It consists of:
Public high schools offer approved driver’s ed programs, but you can complete driver’s ed with other driving schools as well. Make sure that the program you’re taking is approved by the Massachusetts RMV.
If you’re between the ages of 16½ and 18, you are able to get your junior operator license if you’ve completed the requirements below:
When you’re ready to take your road test and get your license, you’ll have to schedule an appointment online or by phone. You will have to provide your social security number, your permit number, your name, and your date of birth. There will also be a road testing fee.
When you go to the MA RMV to take your road test, remember to bring your permit and a road test application, which will need to be completed by a parent or guardian if you are under age 18. You will also need a qualified adult to come with you to the RMV. This adult must be at least 21 years old, have a valid license, and have had at least a year of driving experience.
You’ll take the road test in a state vehicle with a driving instructor. No one else is allowed in the car during the exam. Should you fail, you will have to wait 14 days to retake it.
Once you pass the exam and pay the license and fees, you’ll get your junior operator license and you can start driving alone.
There are some restrictions that come along with the junior operator license. Make sure that you carefully follow all these rules.
Your junior operator’s license will automatically become a full Massachusetts driver’s license when you turn 18, and all restrictions will be lifted.
If you are older than 18 and have never held a driver’s license before, you must still apply for a permit. You’ll need to complete an application, bringing necessary identification documentation, and proof of state residency. You will also need to pass a knowledge exam and vision test.
However, you do not need to take a driver’s ed class or practice driving with a permit; you may simply immediately apply for an unrestricted license after passing the road test.
That’s everything you need to know about getting your driver’s license in Massachusetts. We hope this guide has helped you out and that you now feel comfortable with the steps moving forward. If you need any help studying for your upcoming knowledge or driving exams, then Zutobi is the perfect study resource with a summarized handbook, Massachusetts permit practice tests, and a gamified experience.
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