Licensing & State Laws
Are you legally allowed to drive without supervision now? Learn more about Georgia’s multi-stage licensing process.
At age 15, you can apply for an instructional permit in the state of Georgia. You must pass the written and vision tests, and have a signed parent consent form.
With an instructional permit, you may only drive with a licensed driver age 21 or older who has a valid driver’s license or older supervising and sitting in the front seat. You must complete 40 hours of practice driving (6 of which must be at night) with a parent or guardian. You must also take a 30-hour “Joshua’s Law” driving course and 6 hours of behind-the-wheel training. AAA’s 30-hour online driving course is approved by the Georgia Division of Driver Services and satisfies the 30-hour classroom requirement.
- Keep track of your practice driving with the AAA Driving Log.
Intermediate/ Provisional Driver’s License
When you turn 16 and have had an instructional permit for at least 1 year without any traffic violations, passed a behind-the-wheel driving test, completed a vision test and complete and provided proof of practice driving time, you can apply for this intermediate license. You must also have completed the required driver education course approved by the Department of Driver Services. A legal guardian must accompany you to the DMV to sign the application form, or their signature must be notarized on the form. If you do not complete an approved driver’s education course, they cannot obtain an intermediate license until age 17.
When you have an intermediate license you may not drive between 12 a.m. and 5 a.m. For the first 6 months, you cannot drive a motor vehicle when any other passenger in the vehicle is not a member of your immediate family. For the second 6 months, you cannot drive a motor vehicle with more than one other passenger in the vehicle (who is not a member of the driver’s immediate family) less than age 21. After 12 months, you cannot drive a motor vehicle with more than three other passengers in the vehicle (who are not members of the driver’s immediate family) less than age 21.
At age 18, you can obtain a full unrestricted driver’s license if you have had no major traffic convictions during the previous 12 months. Such violations include driving under the influence, drag racing, reckless driving or any violation with 4 or more points of penalty on the driver’s license.
Now is a good time to set up a parent-teen driving agreement to help you and your parents establish expectations related to both their rules and those of the state.
The Georgia Department of Driver Services is in charge of licensing for all drivers in the state.
- Conducts the written driver’s exam and road test for your instructional permit and intermediate license.
- Provides study materials for teen drivers to help you get ready for the exams.
- Keeps track of your driver’s license status and can suspend your license if you get too many tickets, don’t keep insurance on your car or commit other violations.
Police enforce life-saving traffic laws related to seat belt use, drinking and driving, teen licensure and speeding, among others. If you violate those laws, you will be punished. Breaking the law can lead to fines, license suspension and other penalties.
Getting Stopped by the Police
- Expect to present your driver’s license, the vehicle registration and proof of insurance.
- Always cooperate and be respectful with law enforcement, whether you’re the driver or a passenger.
- Talk to your parent about what happened.
The Georgia Department of Driver Services is in charge of licensing for all drivers in Georgia. GDDS keeps track of your license status and can suspend your license if you get too many tickets, don’t keep insurance on your car or commit other violations.
- StartSmart: Practice Driving – AAA’s tips for parents and teens about practice driving.
- StartSmart: Always Use Seat Belts – 63 percent of 16- to 20-year-olds who die in car crashes aren’t buckled up.
- StartSmart: Distractions and Driving – Read about the most common distractions, and get helpful advice for teens and parents.
- Parent-Teen Driving Agreement – Signing a formal agreement with your parent helps in multiple ways.
- Driver-ZED – Offered by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, Driver-ZED is a computer-based program to help you practice driving.