Utah Department of Public Safety-Driver License Division

Teens learning how to drive in Utah need to know a few basic facts about how to acquire driving privileges in their state. Taking the knowledge and road skills tests, for example, can be difficult if you do not know how to adequately prepare yourself. Added to this, documentation has become increasingly difficult in recent years. The article that follows sets out to explain the system, so that new drivers will find it easy to reach the end and start driving on their own as early as possible.

All new drivers must complete a driver's education requirement to become eligible for driving privileges. This requirement can be accomplished with an online course, through a high school, or through a commercial course. If you have chosen a commercial course, be sure to verify that the company is officially approved by the Utah Department of Public Safety. Online courses will require an additional six hours of driving, to be completed with a high school or commercial program.

The system is divided into two basic steps; the first of these is driver training, which includes preparation for the Learner's Permit, as well as the driver-training requirement. Learner's Permits become available on a teen driver's 15th birthday. The prospective driver must go to a Department of Public Safety Office with the appropriate documentation to prove he or she fulfills the requirements for a Utah Learner's Permit. The list of documents is available on the Utah Department of Public Safety website, at
http://publicsafety.utah.gov/dld/acceptable_id.html.

The candidate will also be given a knowledge test and a medical/eye exam. If he or she receives passing grades, then he or she will also be expected to have a parent or guardian who will sign for financial responsibility in the case of a collision. The fee of $15 for the permit is non-refundable.

The Learner's Permit allows the student driver to drive with an approved instructor in the car. Additionally, a parent, guardian, or the person who signed for financial responsibility in the event of a crash may supervise the student.

With the Learner's Permit, students are expected to finish their driver education courses. They are also expected to drive for 30 hours during the day and 10 hours during the night. If these requirements are met, at least six months have gone by since the Learner's Permit was issued, and the driver is over 16 years old, then the student qualifies for a minor's class D license.

The new driver must return to the Department of Public Safety Office for the minor's license. At this point, he or she has completed driver training. However, while the new driver is under 18, he or she must keep a clean record in order to retain driving privileges, and there are some restrictions. For instance, as long as a driver is under 17 years old, he or she cannot drive on any highway from midnight until 5 in the morning unless supervised by a licensed driver who is over 21 or in fulfillment of work or school responsibilities.

If the driver is under 16 and a half or if the minor license was issued less than six months previously, then non-familial passengers are completely prohibited. This means that until six months after successful acquisition of the class D license, the driver cannot transport any passengers who are not members of the driver's immediate family. Emergencies warrant exceptions to this rule.

More information regarding the application process, as well as listings of Department of Public Safety locations and contact information can be found at http://publicsafety.utah.gov/index.html .

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Last Updated: 12/14/2017


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