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New Jersey Permit Requirements

When applying for a New Jersey driver permit with Motor Vehicle Commission, it is helpful to know the permit requirements.  Make sure you have the met the MVC requirements and that you have the required documents ready.

New Jersey offers an ‘early bird’ licensing option, which requires completion of an approved driver training course before the permit will be validated.  See our article on understanding driver education for more details.

There are specific documents that are needed for primary ID, secondary ID, Social Security number and proof of address to receive a permit.  The applicant must present to an official at a Motor Vehicle Commission Agency a 6-point ID.  To meet this requirement applicants can use the following:

  • an original, certified birth certificate or valid passport
  • social security card,
  • School ID with transcript or report card

Applicants for a permit must pass a knowledge test, which consists of 50 multiple choice questions on traffic laws, rules and regulations. The test is administered by computer, and the results are available immediately after the exam. The applicant must score at least 80 percent in order to pass.

Applicants must also pass a vision test and have 20/50 visual acuity in at least one eye, with or without the use of corrective lenses. Vision tests are conducted at Motor Vehicle Commission agencies.  The applicant must pay the $10 student permit fee.

An applicant under the age of 17 must show proof of enrollment in a driver's education course.   Written consent by a parent or legal guardian is required for applicants under the age of 17.  Permits for applicants under the age of 21 are valid for two years and must be carried at all times when operating a motor vehicle. 

After obtaining a permit, 16-year-old applicants must enroll in an approved course that consists of six hours of behind-the-wheel instruction in a dual-controlled vehicle. Upon completion of the course, the student learner will return to a Motor Vehicle Commission agency that offers testing services and have the permit validated to schedule a road test. For all applicants under the age of 21, the permit must be validated for six months prior to taking the road test. Drivers with the probationary license must display a special decal on the license plate of their car to indicate a new driver.

For applicants age 17 or older, the Motor Vehicle Commission offers a probationary license with a one-year minimum of restricted but unsupervised driving. Applicants age 18 years and older who meet all qualifications are eligible for a basic driver’s license.

Licensed drivers under the age of 21 are subject to New Jersey’s Graduated Driver License requirements. Some of these requirements are:

GDL drivers must add a special decal to the motor vehicle they operate.
GDL drivers may not operate a motor vehicle between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m.
GDL drivers are forbidden to use handheld or hands-free interactive, wireless communication devices.
GDL drivers are restriction to one non-family passenger in the vehicle they operate.

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New Jersey Driver Handbooks & Manuals

Before you take a practice test make sure you've reviewed the New Jersey drivers handbook. You will be tested on this content!