Learner permit and driver license restrictions

Learner Permit Restrictions

No matter what age you are, if you hold a learner permit, you may not drive unless accompanied by a supervising driver age 21 or older who has a valid license to operate the vehicle you are driving. For example, only a person with a motorcycle license may supervise a person learning to drive a motorcycle. 1

You may not drive with a learner permit

  • on any street within a park in New York City
  • on any bridge or tunnel under the jurisdiction of the Tri-borough Bridge and Tunnel Authority
  • on the Cross County, Hutchinson River, Saw Mill River, or Taconic State parkways in Westchester County
  • in a DMV road test area


Probationary period for new drivers

Once you pass your road test or restore a revoked driver's license, you will have a 6-month probationary period. During this time, your license will be suspended for 60 days if you are convicted of any of the following

  • speeding
  • participating in a speed contest
  • reckless driving
  • following too closely
  • use of  a mobile telephone
  • use of a portable electronic device (for example a tablet, GPS device, or MP3 player)
  • any 2 other moving violations

If you are convicted of a texting or another cell phone violation, your probationary license will be suspended for 120 days.

After the suspension ends, you will have a second 6 month probation period.

If you are convicted of one of the violations above (or 2 other moving violations) during the second probation period, your license will be revoked for at least 6 months. When the revocation ends, you must serve another 6-month probationary period.


Under age 18?

If you are under age 18 or are the parent of a driver under age 18, it is very important that you understand the Graduated Driver License (GDL) Law and the restrictions on drivers under age 18.

How long do I have to wait after I get my learner permit to take my road test?

If you are under age 18, you must wait at least 6 months from the date you received your learner permit to schedule your road test. 

  1. 1.

    If you have a motorcycle learner permit (Class M, MJ or Limited MJ), your supervising driver must:

    • exercise “general supervision” of you while you operate the motorcycle, and
    • remain within one-quarter mile of you, keeping you in sight at all times

    The only passenger who can ride with you on the motorcycle is your supervising driver. If you operate a moped with any valid class of learner permit, the same passenger rules apply.

For your convenience, many DMV PDF forms can be filled in online and then printed.