The Rookie Driver applies to all applicants, regardless of age, who have never held a license in Maryland or any other state or country. The program requires new drivers to gain more driving experience with a supervising driver. It encourages good driving behavior by imposing strict sanctions during each step of the licensing process, such as driver improvement classes or the suspension or revocation of licenses.
The Rookie Driver graduated licensing system, applicants progress through three levels of licensing:
Minimum age for applicants is 15 years and 9 months.
If under 16, you must provide a completed verification of your identity and/or school attendance form(#DL-300) to an MVA official during the learner’s permit application process. The attendance form must be presented to the MVA in a sealed, unopened envelope provided by the applicant's school or county home school coordinator, if home schooled. A parent or guardian must co-sign the learner's permit application if the applicant is under 18.
Applicants must successfully pass a vision screening and a knowledge test prior to obtaining a learner's permit. Applicants need to study the Maryland Driver's Manual, can attend one of Best Driving Academy's classes and, can also practice for their learner's permit using the Maryland Online Driver Test Tutorial to prepare for the permit knowledge test.
Applicants must obtain a valid learner's permit before any behind-the-wheel driver education training or driving on Maryland's roadways.
Restrictions on Learner’s Permit:
Learner's permit holders under 18 are prohibited from using a cell phone and all Bluetooth/hands-free devices while operating a motor vehicle, except to make an emergency 911 call. Violations may result in a suspension of your driving privilege. While driving, learner's permit holders must be accompanied by a qualified supervising driver who is 21 years or older, and has held a license for a minimum of 3 years. The person must be seated beside the new driver at all times, with no other front seat occupants.
A qualified supervising driver (parent, guardian, or mentor) must complete a practice skills log for the learner's permit holder, which is issued by the MVA when the learner's permit is issued.
Best Driving Academy can also provide the skills logbook.
New drivers must also present the completed certification page from the practice skills log book with the minimum number of practice hours according to their age classification as listed in the chart above, and their unexpired Maryland learner's permit when they arrive for their driving skills test appointment.
If a driver with a learner's permit is convicted of or given a probation before judgment (PBJ) for a moving violation, they are required to hold the permit for a minimum of 9 months following the date they were convicted of a moving violation, or granted the PBJ. They must also meet all of the requirements for a provisional license before they are eligible to take a driving skills test.
If an applicant is under 25 years old when a first Maryland learner’s permit is obtained and then turns 25 afterwards, the MVA will permit the applicant to take a driving skills test if the permit has been held for at least 45 days (the 45 days may include the days the applicant held the permit before turning
25). The applicant must have completed at least 14 hours of supervised driving and the required driver’s education program.
An eligible supervising driver must have completed the certification page from the practice skills log.
Out-of-state driver’s education certificates are not typically accepted by the MVA. Currently, the MVA has only approved certificates that are issued by the Delaware Board of Education that actually state that the certificate has been approved by the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration. No other out-of-state certificates are currently accepted.
Parents Please Note:
* If a new driver under 18 is cited for a moving violation, the MVA will notify the co-signer.
* Drivers under 18 may have their licenses suspended if the parent, guardian, or co-signer withdraws their consent. Contact the MVA for details.
Things to Remember:
* To obtain a learner's permit, please visit any of the MVA's full-service offices. The MVA will mail your learner's permit to you.
* Your driving skills test for a provisional license must be scheduled in advance. Go to https://mvascheduling.mva.maryland.gov/ to schedule an appointment.
Maryland requires all registered vehicle owners to carry liability insurance, uninsured motorist, and personal injury protection (PIP) coverage.
Please note that if your learner's permit expires, or you are not able to complete or pass the required skills tests before it expires, you will be required to reapply for a new permit.
To do so, please:
A provisional license is the next stage of the Rookie Driver graduated licensing system process. You must have passed the Maryland driver skills test to obtain a provisional license. In the provisional phase, the driver gains experience by driving without supervision but with restrictions. The restrictions include the use of a cell phone, transporting passengers, driving at night or under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
All provisional drivers must maintain a clean driving record for 18 months before they are eligible for a full Maryland driver's license. With a provisional license, you may drive without a supervising driver. However, you may be subject to restrictions depending on your age.
Any conviction or probation before judgment with a provisional license will restart the 18 month time period one must hold the license. The time period is restarted from the date of the conviction or probation before judgment, or the date the license was restored after a suspension or revocation.
In addition to the points and fines that may come from a moving violation, provisional drivers are also subject to additional sanctions:
Sanctions for violating a license restriction:
Parents Please Note:
When you have successfully completed all the requirements of the provisional license, and held the license for the minimum requested time period, the MVA will automatically convert your license to the full privileges of a driver's license.
An attachment card will be mailed to you, indicating the conversion and should be carried with the provisional license. Once you renew your license, you will be issued a new one and will no longer need the attachment.
Provisional License Requirements for Drivers Holding Licenses from another State or Country:
Special provisions apply for drivers, regardless of age, who have less than 18 months of experience and hold a license from another state or country.
A U.S. Armed forces military operator's permit or license is not acceptable proof of a driver's license. If you cannot provide proof of ever holding a driver's license, you will need to apply as a new driver and complete all of the required graduated licensing requirements.