Frequently Asked Questions
Selecting a Driving School
Teenage Driver Learners Permit
What are the steps involved
for a teenager to get a California Drivers License?
How long must I use my Instruction (Learner's) Permit if I am under 18?
How old must I be to start taking Drivers Education in class or online?
How old must I be to apply for a Learner's Permit to begin driving?
What are the restrictions or provisions put on my Learner's Permit?
When I apply for my Learner's Permit at the DMV, what do I need to take with me?
Does my Mom or Dad have to go with me to the DMV when I apply for a Permit?
What type of tests do the DMV require you to take to get your Learner's Permit?
Is it possible to obtain a Learner's Permit without taking Driver's Education?
Do I have to apply for my Learner's Permit at the DMV closest to my house?
How many questions are you asked on your Learner's Permit written test?
What's the best source of study material to prepare for the Learner's Permit test?
When I obtain my Learner's Permit, is it legal for me to begin driving right away?
Do my parents or guardian always have to be with me when I drive?
How long is my Learner's Permit valid?
Is it OK to drive with my Learner's Permit in another state?
With my Learner's Permit may I drive with my friends in the car?
Do I always have to carry my Learner's Permit?
If I fail my Learner's Permit test, do I have to pay another $31?
If I lose my Learner's Permit, will I have to pay for a new one?
With my Learner's Permit there is an additional form which requires someone to sign verifying that I have had 50 hours of practice driving time. Who has to sign it?
Is it OK to drive with a Learner's Permit after dark?
When I'm driving with a Learner's Permit, does the licensed driver supervising me have any rules or restrictions?
May I ride a motorcycle or motor scooter on a public surface street with my Class C Learner's Permit?
May I take my Behind-the-Wheel driving lessons in my family's car?
If I am stopped by a police officer, who gets the ticket, me or the supervising party?
If my Learner's Permit expires, do I have to retake the Driver's Education course?
With a Learner's Permit, is it legal to drive a large truck or motorhome?
May I drive anybody's vehicle as long as I have someone with me who is 25 years of age with a valid California license
Provisional Drivers License
After I pass my DMV
Driving Test, will I get a full California Driver's License?
May I drive with anyone in the car when I have a Provisional Driver's License?
May I drive at any time of day with a Provisional Driver's License?
Are there any other restrictions that come with a Provisional Driver's License?
May I drive any type of vehicle with a Provisional Driver's License?
Why does DMV create these restrictions for a Provisional Driver's License?
How long does the Provisional Driver's License status last?
After the Provisional period is over, will DMV send me a standard Driver's License?
QUESTIONS ABOUT SELECTING A DRIVING SCHOOL:
A. When searching for a professional Driving School, remember that price and location aren't the only factors. Not all Schools have the same depth of experience or offer the same range of curriculum. To learn more about the quality, value and capability, ask these questions:
- How long has the School been in business? (Ten years or more is desirable).
- How many Instructors do you have? (Just 1 or 2 only leaves no back-up for lessons).
- Does the School also teach adults, seniors, disabled, and learning disabled people, or do they just teach teenagers? (Schools that teach all types of drivers, not only teens, must have better-trained and more highly-skilled instructors.)
- Driver's Education: Does the School offer both a Driver's Education classroom format and an online home study course? Different students learn better in different ways.
- Driver's Training: is the “School” just an internet Driver's Ed provider or do they also offer Behind-the-Wheel? (Get all certificates from the same School for continuity).
- Driver's Training: does the School teach a full curriculum of the skills needed to stay safe in all driving environments (freeway, city driving, winding roads, parking lots, night time), or just the minimum necessary to pass a 20-minute DMV driving test?
- Are driving lessons private one-on-one sessions with an Instructor, or will other Students be riding in the car? (More than one Student reduces the amount of learning time and focus during a 2-hour lesson and is distracting to new drivers.)
- Do you ban Instructors from using cell phones during lessons? (Some Schools allow Instructors to use phones or run errands, taking attention away from the Student.)
- Is the school DMV licensed, insured, and bonded?
- Is the school a member of the Driving School Association of California?
- Does the price include freeway and night lessons, free pick-up and all Certificates?
- Are your driver's training vehicles clean, dual-braked, safety-inspected and equipped with full airbags and air conditioning?
- If I sign up and pay for both the classroom and driving courses, is there a discount?
- May I pay as I go for each behind-the-wheel lesson or do I have to pay for all lessons in advance?
- Do you accept all credit cards for payment?
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE TEENAGE DRIVER LEARNER'S PERMIT:
A. California has a specific sequence of steps for new drivers under 18:
- The first step is to enroll in Drivers Education, which is possible as early as age 15 but not recommended before 15 years and 4 months. Drivers Education is available either as a classroom (Parkway Bowl every Saturday 8:45-4:15; involves 4 Saturdays in a row) or online for home study (contact our Office for online program details).
- When Drivers Education is finished, a DMV Certificate of Completion is issued.
- When a Student is at least 15 ½ and has the DMV Certificate, they may take the 46-question written test at any DMV. Proof of identification and a vision test are required, and a photograph and thumb print will be taken at this time. Students get 3 chances to pass the written test, with a minimum 1-week period between attempts.
- Successfully passing the written test and paying a DMV fee provides the Student with an Instruction (Learner's) Permit, which is valid for exactly 1 year.
- The Instruction Permit must be validated by a licensed Instructor after the first 2-hour driving lesson. DRIVING IS NOT PERMITTED (except with an Instructor) UNTIL THE FIRST BEHIND-THE-WHEEL LESSON IS COMPLETED.
- After the Instruction Permit is validated, the Student may drive with any California-licensed driver over age 25 who is in the front passenger seat and alert.
- The Instruction Permit must be used for a minimum of 6 months. In that period, the Student must receive 6 hours of professional instruction (three 2-hour lessons) and 50 hours of driving practice with parents or guardians, including 10 hours at night.
- After 6 hours of instruction are finished, a DMV Certificate of Completion of Behind-the-Wheel Training will be issued. (NOTE: New drivers over 17 ½ may obtain an Instruction Permit without taking Drivers Education or Drivers Training but must use that permit for at least 6 months and may not get a drivers license before age 18).
- The Student may take the DMV Driving Test for a Drivers License after their 16th birthday, after having their Instruction Permit for at least 6 months, and after the Certificate of Completion has been issued. An appointment is required for the Driving Test and may be made by phone or online. The Student has 3 chances to pass the Driving Test, waiting a minimum of 2 weeks between attempts.
- After successfully passing the Driving Test, a Provisional Drivers License will be issued to new drivers under age 18. This license restricts drivers from being on the road from 11pm-5am and from having passengers under age 20 (except for family members) unless there is a licensed driver over 25 in the front passenger seat. The Provisional status is released after one year or when the Student turns 18.
A. You must maintain your Learner's Permit for a minimum of 6 months or until you turn 18.
A. Most schools will allow you to enroll as early as 15 years and 4 months. However, legally there is no minimum age requirement for the classroom portion of the course.
A. Minimum age is 15 ½ if you enroll in a professional Driving School or 17 ½ if you don't.
A. You may only drive with a licensed California driver 25 years of age or older in the front right seat. You must have your parents' permission to drive with the permit. Any alcohol in your system will result in permit suspension. Possession of weapons, dropping out of school, having an at-fault accident or being convicted of vandalism will result in a permit suspension.
A. An Application signed by your parents, $31 (cash or check), your Social Security Number, a certified copy of your birth certificate, and certificates (from a Driving School) of completion of Driver's Education and enrollment in the Behind-the-Wheel training.
A. No, if your parents sign your application form you may apply without them.
A. A 46-question written test (you may not miss more than 8), plus two vision tests.
A. You may apply for an Instruction Permit at the age of 17 ½, but you will not be eligible for a license until you either take a Driver's Education course, or turn 18 years of age.
A. You may apply for a Learner's Permit at any DMV in the State of California. Making an appointment will save you time but is not required.
A. 46 multiple-choice questions on California laws and signs, and you cannot miss more than 8. If you do, you must wait one week before taking another test.
A. California Driver Handbook (available at DMV) plus materials from your Driving School. El Cajon Driving School also provides a 92-question sample test in the Driver's Ed classroom.
A. No. Before driving, you must first take one driving lesson with a professional driving instructor. This lesson validates your permit to drive with other licensed drivers over 25.
A. You may drive with anyone who is 25 years of age or older who has a valid California license, but only with your parents' permission.
A. One year. It may be extended for a longer period by paying a fee at the DMV.
A. Maybe. In most cases it you are permitted to drive in other states as long as you have someone with you 25 years of age or older with a valid California license. However, to be sure, you should check the driving rules in each state you wish to drive in.
A. Yes, but only if you have someone with you who is 25 years of age or older with a valid California driver's license riding in the front passenger seat.
A. You must have your Permit with you only when you are actually driving.
A. No, you are entitled to three tries, but you must wait one week between attempts.
A. You may obtain a copy from your local DMV at no extra charge.
Q. With my Learner's Permit there is an additional form which requires someone to sign verifying that I have had 50 hours of practice driving time. Who has to sign it?
A. Your parents or whoever actually gave you the 50 hours of practice time; not the driving instructor who gave you 6 hours of required Behind-the-Wheel training.
A. You may drive anytime day or night as long as you have a licensed driver 25 years of age or older with you riding in the front seat (and awake).
Q. When I'm driving with a Learner's Permit, does the licensed driver supervising me have any rules or restrictions?
A. The California-licensed driver must be in the front seat of the vehicle, sober and awake, and able to control the car in an emergency.
Q. May I ride a motorcycle or motor scooter on a public surface street with my Class C Learner's Permit?
A. It is illegal to ride a motorcycle, even in a parking lot, without a motorcycle Learner's Permit or license (a separate process from Class C motor vehicles). If you do, you may be cited and have your motorcycle impounded. (Private or gated property does not apply).
A. NO. All 6 hours of actual driving lessons must be provided by a licensed driving instructor in a DMV-approved training vehicle with dual brakes and mirrors. You may get driving practice in your family car with a California-licensed driver over 25.
A. YOU. The DRIVER of any vehicle is the captain of the ship and is completely responsible for anything that happens.
A. No, but you will be required to submit a new application, pay a $31 fee, and retake and pass the written and eye tests.
A. Yes, but only up to 26,000 gross vehicle weight, not for hire and no air brake vehicles.
Q. May I drive anybody's vehicle as long as I have someone with me who is 25 years of age with a valid California license?
A. MAYBE. First, you must have your parent's permission and the vehicle owner's permission to drive the vehicle. Second, the vehicle must be currently insured, the vehicle must be under 26,001 pounds and not have air brakes.
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE PROVISIONAL DRIVER'S LICENSE:
A. No. Newly licensed drivers under age 18 are issued a Provisional Driver's License. It has the photo on the opposite side and colored bars to distinguish it from a standard California Driver's License.
A. No. While you are free to drive alone, you may NOT drive with passengers under age 20 UNLESS there is a California-licensed driver 25 or older in the front passenger seat (same as with a Learner's Permit). DMV makes an exception to allow you to drive with passengers under 20 who are direct family members (brothers or sisters).
A. No. You may not drive between the hours of 11 pm and 5 am UNLESS a California-licensed driver 25 or older is in the front passenger seat (same as with a Learner's Permit). DMV makes an exception if you must drive to or from work or school or a doctor appointment during these hours, but you must have written documentation to verify it.
A. Yes. Traffic violations or at-fault accidents could cause your license to be suspended. You must be enrolled in school if you haven't graduated or have a GED—drop-outs or truant Students may have their license suspended. Any conviction for using alcohol or drugs will cause a License suspension. Parents may also withdraw permission to drive and notify DMV (parents have financial responsibility for their children until they reach age 18, so they have the right to take away a Driver's License if they feel it causes them extra financial risk).
A. You may drive any type of passenger vehicle that qualifies as Class C (under 26,000 lb GVW) subject to the restrictions above.
A. California is trying to reduce teen driving accidents and highway deaths. Driving is a new skill that requires full attention and time to develop. 65% of teens killed in auto accidents had another teen in the car with them. The majority of fatal accidents occur at night. Driving must be taken seriously, and the possibility of losing that privilege helps drivers to stay serious, be more responsible and mature, and to drive safely.
A. The Provisional status is lifted after one year or when the driver turns 18 years of age, whichever occurs first.
A. No. You may go to DMV to have your Driver's License re-issued in the standard form for a fee. After you are 18 or your Provisional Driver's License is more than a year old, you may keep the Provisional Driver's License but use it as a standard license without restrictions.
NOW THAT YOU HAVE THE ANSWERS, IT'S TIME TO START YOUR DRIVING FUTURE
Contact Us TODAY to get enrolled.