As you probably know, teen drivers get more tickets and are hurt and killed in greater numbers than other drivers. To decrease these accidents, a special “provisional” type of license and instruction permit is issued to drivers under the age of 18. Minors may keep their license as long as they obey certain “provisions.” They must obey the traffic laws and drive without an accident. They must hold their permit longer (six months) than other drivers and practice the driving skills listed on page 6 of this handbook before they come to the Department o f Motor Vehicles (DMV) for their driving test. If your teen incorrectly answers nine or more questions (46 total questions) on the law test, he or she must wait one week before retaking the test. If your teen fails his or her driving test, he or she must wait two weeks before taking another test. Teen drivers have new restrictions for the first year after they are licensed. During the first 12 months, a teen cannot drive between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. and cannot transport passengers under age 20, unless accompanied by a parent or guardian, a licensed driver 25 years of age or older, or a licensed or certified driving instructor.
The 2009 edition of the California Driver Handbook contains all of the requirements your teen must meet to qualify for a license. The Parent-Teen Training Guide was developed to help you, the parent, in providing your teen with additional driving practice and DOES NOT contain all of the licensing requirements needed at a DMV office to obtain a permit or license.
Those under 18 years of age must complete driver education (classroom training) and driver training (behind-the-wheel) in a public or private high school, or in a state-licensed professional driving school. (The hours required for driver education and driver training classes are defined in California Education Code §§51851 and 51852.) Internet, correspondence, or other distance-based driver education training must be the equivalent of approved classroom instruction. If you use the services of a professional driving school, ask to see the instructor’s identification card and confirm that the school is licensed by the DMV. Professional driving schools and instructors in California are licensed by the DMV after meeting qualifying standards. Whoever gives the instruction must sign the statement on your teen’s permit certifying that he or she has completed the supervised training. This statement must be completed and returned to the DMV before the driving test may be taken. Driver training in school is important, but the hours you spend with your teen behind the wheel will give your teen important additional experience. Help your teen driver practice all of the driving skills listed on page 6. These skills are divided into four different levels. Only instruction and hours of practice will make your teen a good driver.
During the summer months, daylight hours sometimes extend until 9:30 p.m. Schedule your
practice sessions so your teen driver will have enough experience driving when it is dark and in different types of
weather conditions. (At least 10 hours of night driving practice is required before taking a driving test.)
Please take the time to familiarize yourself with everything in the California Driver Handbook before you begin the sessions. DMV conducts the driving test based on the handbook.
Remember, as a parent you must be concerned with your teen’s safety. If you decide that your teen is driving dangerously or irresponsibly, you may cancel the instruction permit or license at any time by completing a Request for Cancellation or Surrender of a Driver License or Identification Card, form DL 142. It is available from any DMV office or from the forms section of the DMV website (www.dmv.ca.gov).