Getting a Provisional Driver’s License
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Once the student has completed the entire behind-the-wheel portion of the driver education course, they’re ready to move on to the Provisional Driver License.
If the student is under 18, they must have held a valid learner’s license for at least six months.
About the Provisional License
The Provisional Driver License allows the student to drive without a supervising adult in the front seat, but has several restrictions on driving:
- The license holder may not drive a motor vehicle with more than one passenger in the vehicle under 21 who is not a family member
- The license holder may not drive a motor vehicle between midnight and 5:00 a.m., unless they need to drive to go to work, to attend or participate in a school-related activity, or because of a medical emergency
- The license holder cannot use a cellphone, including a hands-free device, except in an emergency
Obtaining The Provisional License
The student will need to:
- Be between 16 and 17 years old
- Complete the Impact Texas Teen Driver Program within the previous 90 days of taking the skills test. The Impact Texas Teen Driver Program is a free, two-hour informational video that shares the dangers of distracted driving along with real life stories of teens that have lost their lives.
- Successfully pass the driving test. The student can complete the driving test requirements at the DL office or through a Third Party provider. If you will be taking your driving test at a local driver license office, you will be required to:
- Schedule an appointment online, and
- Present proof of current registration and insurance for the vehicle you will be testing in at the time of the driving test.
Note: A student must complete a driving test to qualify for a driver license, but the written knowledge test will be waived if a test was completed during the driver education course.
What to Bring to DPS
The parent instructor on record must accompany the student to the Driver License Office when they apply for the Provisional License.
Visit Driver License Appointments to make an appointment at a driver license office.
The student will need to bring the following documents to the DPS:
- The completed driver license application. (This form is also available at all driver license offices, but completing it before you get to the office will speed up the process.)
- Proof of U.S. citizenship or, if not a U.S. Citizen, evidence of lawful presence
- Proof of Texas residency
- Proof of identity, and
- Social security number
- Proof of Texas vehicle registration
- Proof of vehicle insurance, whether the student has already taken and passed the driving test, or will be taking it at DPS (If you do not own a vehicle, you will sign a statement affirming this.)
- Texas Driver Education Certificate of Completion (DE-964) showing classroom completion. If the student has not taken the writtem exam during the classroom portion of driver education, they will take it at the driver license office.
- A Verification of Enrollment and Attendance form issued by a school, or a high school diploma or equivalent (GED).
- The VOE form requires a signature from a school official (a stamped or computer-generated signature is acceptable), and is only valid for 30 days (or 90 days between the months of June – August).
Verify Your Information
The student will receive a temporary paper driver license. Be sure to review the printed information on the temporary driver license before leaving the driver license office to make sure all the information is correct. If any of the information is incorrect, notify the DPS employee assisting you.
The new card will arrive in the mail in approximately 2 to 3 weeks. Check the card’s mailing status by visiting the DPS mailing status web page.
Renewing a Provisional License
The Provisional License expires on the license-holder’s 18th birthday. The licensee will be eligible to renew online by using the DPS online renewal process, which costs the same as renewing at a driver license office.
If the license-holder chooses to renew in person before they turn 18, they will need to be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. If they renew in person after their 18th birthday, they will no longer need to be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
Upon your first renewal after turning 21 years old, you will receive a full unrestricted driver license.