DMV Learners Permit Forms for Student Drivers under 18

January 27, 2012

Anyone over 15 but under 18 who wants to apply for a DMV permit needs to fill out a number of DMV forms. Here is a look at the DMV forms needed for a permit in California.

  • DMV DL 44.The DMV Dl 44 is the basic application form that has to be filled out to get a driving license. It is also known as the "Driver License or Identification Card Application"
  • DMV DL 387.This form is to be filled out by the minor applicant to prove that he or she has completed training for driving a motor vehicle
  • DMV OL 237.This is another form related to the completion of driving education
  • DMV OL 238.The DMV OL 238 is an alternative to the OL 237
  • DMV DL 388.This form has to be filled in to prove the completion of driving education. It is used as an alternative to the DMV DL 387
  • DMV DL 388A.This form has to be to the DL 388 when submitting an application to acquire a permit for anyone under the age of 18 years
  • DMV DL 392.This form shows that the applicant is undergoing training for driving a motor vehicle
  • DMV OL 392.The DMV OL 392 is also for the purpose of proving that the applicant is currently undergoing training for driving a motor vehicle
  • DMV DL 33.The applicant has to fill out the DL 33 form if he or she has completed his or her driving education in a state other than California
  • DMV DL 400. This form is to be filled by applicants who have enrolled and are participating in an approved integrated driver training/education program

How a DMV Permit Works

A DMV permit is an important document for a beginning driver looking to get on the road for the first time. A department of motor vehicles permit is a temporary license that allows a beginning driver to drive with certain restrictions during a probationary learning period.

Some states have multiple levels of graduated driving permits which allow an absolute beginner to drive only when accompanied by a licensed driver. As skills increase and the young driver gets more hours behind the wheel, they can progress to a new permit or graduated license that allows them to operate a motor vehicle at most times. While DMV permits were once a short-term license, new graduated license laws mean that a beginning driver can be on a permit for several years.

In other instances, a permit is issued while a driver studies for the DMV license test. In this case, the new driver should complete DMV practice tests so that they can get an unrestricted license quickly.

Eligibility for a DMV Permit
The requirements for getting a DMV driving permit vary from state to state. Typically, a driver must be at least 15 years old and have passed an approved driver's education program in their state of residence. Depending on state requirements in your area, a beginning driver must hold their level 1 DMV permit for a minimum number of months before being permitted to drive without an adult. In some areas, beginning drivers must also complete a logbook that highlights all of their hours of supervised driving. This may be required to apply for the next step of the graduated license program that has been adopted by many states.

After successfully driving with a DMV learner's permit, a young driver is eligible for the next DMV permit, which in most states is a restricted driver's license that allows the beginning driver to operate a vehicle without supervision during most hours of the day. This is the penultimate stage of the graduated DMV permit system, and after two to three years of successful unsupervised driving the young driver may apply for a full license in his or her state.

Key Considerations
Most states consider all beginning drivers to have probationary licenses until their eighteenth birthday or later, depending on state law. Drivers on DMV permits should be careful while driving and obey all laws. Points and at-fault accidents on a license can cause the probationary period to be extended. As a young driver completes all stages of their driver's training, there may be significant fees connected to license applications and driver's training. These fees may or may not be regulated in your state. If driver's training is offered by private instructors, be sure to contact multiple teachers to get the best quote possible.

5 Provisional Driving Restrictions

  • An adult instructor.The first and primary restriction placed upon provisional drivers who hold learner's permits is that they must be accompanied at all times in the vehicle by a licensed adult driver. Typically, this driver must be at least 18 years of age. The reasoning behind this restriction is that experienced drivers can provide essential feedback and assistance to drivers who are just beginning to operate a vehicle
  • A single passenger.Most states require that provisional drivers have no more than one passenger in the vehicle at a time. There may be separate provisions for family members. Some states require that no other passenger may be present aside from a licensed family member or a driver education instructor of some kind. The penalties for failing to adhere to these restrictions may be quite severe in certain areas, and may even result in jail sentences or heavy fines
  • Special identification.Many areas mandate that provisional drivers alert other vehicles and pedestrians to their presence. Typically, this can be accomplished by affixing a special sticker or message board to the inside of the car windshield or window. Driver education cars adhere to this policy, regardless of which state or jurisdiction they are in. The reason behind this provision is that other drivers can have the benefit of knowing when a learning driver is on the road. They can drive with caution accordingly
  • Seat belts.State laws require that seat belts be worn by all passengers in a car while the automobile is moving in any location. However, some areas also require that all people in a car driven by a driver with a learner's permit wear seat belts at all times while present in the vehicle. This may include times when normal state laws would not require that seat belts be worn, such as when a car is not in motion or not turned on
  • Warning labels. If you should violate a driving law or incur any other penalty while learning how to drive, many areas require that you notify other people in the area by attaching a warning label or sticker to the vehicle. This alerts drivers and pedestrians in the area that they must be cautious while in the presence of the labeled vehicle

For more information about the particular requirements and limitations associated with learner's permits in your area, consult with your local DMV.

Related Questions and Answers

If I Have an Expired Learner's Permit is There a Fee to Renew it?

The fees associated with an expired learners permit will vary from state to state. In most cases you can expect a fee for renewing your permit. Call your local DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) to find out the exact cost of renewing a permit. Your local DMV website should have the fees listed online as well. Typical fee amounts will range from $10 to $25. If the permit has been expired for a long time, you may have to retake the written test to be issued a new permit. Learners permits are issued to young drivers. It allows them to drive with certain restrictions before they are old enough to apply for a full license.

How Much Time Do I Have to Take the DMV Written Permit Test?

When taking a DMV written permit test, there is usually no time limit on the test. Every state manages its own drivers license bureau, which means the rules for taking the test vary by state. Check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in regards to the testing policies. In the majority of states there is no time limit for the written test. It is best to be fully prepared for the test. The majority of DMV offices have online practice tests which can help prepare you for the actual test. There are also plenty of private sites that offer practice tests, and a quick web search will bring up pages of results.

How Much Does Getting a Driving Permit Cost?

It is necessary to contact your local DMV to find out a driving permit cost. Every state issues and regulates drivers licenses within its boundaries. This means that the cost for a drivers permit will vary from state to state. Typical costs range from around $18 up to $45. The average is between $20 and $30. In most states, a drivers permit is issued to young, inexperienced drivers. It has various restrictions attached, such as no driving at night, and the permit holder must be accompanied by a fully licensed driver. When the permit holder is old enough to apply for a full drivers license, they must pass a written and practical test.

Can I Take the DMV Driving Test Online?

It is possible in some states to take the written portion of a DMV driving test online. These tests are administered by each individual state, so the availability of online testing varies by state. It is best to contact your local DMV in regards to its guidelines and requirements. While many states have moved to doing the written portion of the testing online, there are still many states that require an applicant to come down to the DMV office. There are plenty of practice tests online if you need to do some studying before trying to pass the real test. Many DMV offices have practice tests online. A web search will bring up hundreds of private sites that have practice tests available, usually for a fee.

Does the DMV Have Applications for Getting an International Driving Permit?

An application for an international driving permit (IDP) is not something your local DMV would have. International Driver Permits are simply proof that you hold a valid drivers license in the country you live in. It is something to show the local police if you get pulled over in a foreign country. There are only two organizations that are licensed to issue International Driving Permits. AAA is the most popular choice for people getting IDPs. The other is the National Automobile Club. You must present a valid drivers license, two passport size photos and a completed application.