How To Get A Drivers’ License In New Jersey?

Each state in the USA has different rules for issuing a driver’s license. To get a driver’s license in New Jersey,  you must be a legal resident of New Jersey.

Your age and whether you have a driver’s license from another state, determine the process of getting a license.

At the age of 16, you are allowed to have a driver’s permit, and at the age of 17, you can get a probational license. This license has limitations as provided under the Graduated Driver License program.

The GDL Licensing Program

NJ Driver's License This program provides a safe driver orientation to teenagers. The purpose is to reduce the number of accidents caused by teenagers. It outlines the steps to be followed by teenagers before getting a basic driver’s license.

If you are 16 or 17, you do not get a driver’s license right away. Instead, you get a special learner’s permit. Your Parents or guardians must give their consent for you to get this permit.

The first thing is to enroll in an approved drivers’ course. In this course, you must pass the knowledge and vision test. At the age of 17, you can practice driving under supervision for at least six months.

Driving under supervision means that a driver with a New Jersey driving license must accompany you at the front seat. The driver must have at least three years of driving experience.

Probational License

To get a probational license, you must be 17 and above. You have to pass a driving test offered by New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. You are also required to have at least a year of unsupervised driving.

Drivers with a learner’s permit and probational license must comply with the restrictions set out by the GDL licensing program. That means no more than one passenger in the car and no driving between 11 pm 5 am.

Drivers from 21 years and above are not subject to these limits.

Basic License

To get a basic license, you must be at least 18 years old. You must have been driving for at least one year without supervision under the probational license. In addition, you must pay the required fee.

The limitations of probational license do not apply in the basic license.

Documents Required

New Jersey uses the 6 point ID verification system. According to this system, each document you present has different points.

For instance, a valid US birth certificate or passport is worth 4 points. A debit card or credit card with your name on it is worth 1 point. A school ID with your photo on it with a school transcript is worth 3 points.

A license applicant must have at least 6 points to be issued with a license.

In addition, you must provide:

  • Your address to prove that you are a New Jersey resident
  • Your individual taxpayer identification number or social security number

Failure to have those two requires you to provide an affidavit.

If your documents are not in the English language, you must present a translated copy issued by the government.

Driving Test

First-time drivers seeking a driver’s license in New Jersey must go through the graduated driver’s license program. This program provides a series of tests that lead to a basic driver’s license.

You cannot take the road test unless you have completed the vision and knowledge test.

Vision Test

Vision tests are offered by motor vehicle agencies that offer vision tests. To pass this test, you must have 20/50 visual acuity. If you pass the test wearing lenses, your license will be limited. You will be required to wear those lenses every time you are driving.

Applicants who fail the vision test are required to see a doctor and fill form ST-14

Knowledge Test

Before taking the knowledge test, it is crucial to go through the New Jerseys Drivers Manual. The 243-pages manual is comprehensive, with everything you need to know to pass the knowledge test.

To take this test, you have to visit a driver testing center carrying your 6-point verification document. Then, you will have to purchase an examination permit and book an appointment before taking the test.

Oral tests are taken in either English or Spanish, while written tests are taken in 10 languages.

A sample test available online can help you understand the structure of the knowledge test.

Road Test

Before taking the road test, you must:

  • Pass the vision and knowledge test
  • Practice supervised driving between 3 to 6 months, depending on your age
  • Come with a valid examination permit and 6-point verification documents

The road test will test your ability to drive safely on the road and observe traffic rules.

If you pass the test, the safety specialist will endorse your examination permit – this will allow you to obtain a driver’s license.

Failure to pass the road test requires you to wait for 14 days, after which you can retake the test.

Drivers from the Other States

Drivers with a license from a different state within the US need to apply for a license transfer. They can do this by presenting their drivers’ license and ID to the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. They will fill up the license transfer form and pay a transfer fee of $10.

License Issuing Authority

Drivers’ licenses are issued by the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. The commission has the mandate to issue new licenses, replace expired licenses, and replace lost ones.

To get a New Jersey basic driving license, you must be at least 18 years old. Below 18 years, you can only get a probational license. Applying for a license in New Jersey requires you to provide 6-point documents and proof that you are a resident of New Jersey.

You must pass three tests for you to be eligible for a driver’s license. These tests are vision, knowledge, and road test. If you pass the three tests, you will either be issued a probational license if you are below 18 years or a basic license if you are 18 years and above.