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How do I receive a California Driver's License if I am a teen?

The first step is to obtain your Learner's Permit

The following steps are for obtaining your Learner's Permit:

  • Complete your Online Drivers Ed Course and receive your Drivers Ed Completion Certificate from DriversEducationUSA.com
  • Obtain your California ID Card from California DMV if you have not done so.
  • Visit a DMV office, pay the application fee for your Learner's Permit, have your photo taken, pass a vision exam and pass DMV's Knowledge Test by passing score of 80%.

    DriversEducationUSA.com offers complementary DMV's Practice Test . (You can prepare for DMV's knowledge test.)

Once you have received your Learner's Permit, you need to wait six months before you can take your driving test to receive your provisional driver’s license.

California drivers license

A provisional driver’s license is a driver's license with the following limitations:

  • You are not permitted to drive using your provisional driver’s license between the hours of 11 p.m. and 5 a.m.
  • You are not permitted to drive using your provisional driver’s license having a passenger under the age of 20 unless there is a licensed driver over the age of 25 in the car.

Exceptions to the above rules are:

  • Medical necessity (you must have a signed statement from your doctor).
  • Going to school (you must have a signed statement from your principal or another authority in your school).
  • Necessity of family member (you must have a signed statement by a parent/legal guardian verifying the reason you need to drive for the family).
  • Emancipated minor.

Your provisional driver’s license automatically becomes a standard driver's license after one year of having your provisional driver’s license or after you turn 18, whichever comes first.  The DMV will not mail you a new driver's license that does not have the provisional information printed on it. However, if you like, you can go to the DMV office and apply for a duplicate copy of your license without the provisional information printed on it.

To be eligible to receive a provisional license, you must:

  • Be at least 16 years old and have your California Learner's Permit for a minimum of six months.
  • Have completed at least 50 hours of driving practice with an adult 25 years of age or older, under the following circumstances:
  • At least 10 hours of the 50 hours must be at night.
  • The adult must have a valid California driver’s license.
  • Have completed at least 6 hours of behind-the-wheel training from a DMV-approved behind-the-wheel instructor.

For additional guide on obtaining your California Provisional Driver License, use below resources:
Teen Driver Guide
How to obtain your California Driver License as a Teen