Are you or someone in your family ready to start driving? In Arizona, drivers can start driving at age 15 1/2 years old. Before obtaining an unrestricted driver’s license, Arizona requires new drivers to first get a graduated instruction permit, followed by a graduated driver license.
Graduated Instruction Permit (G Permit)
A graduated instruction permit is the first step for a person to become licensed to drive. This permit is designed to give a new driver a decent amount of driving experience while an adult is in the car before the teen is allowed to drive alone.
This can be done a few ways ways. Either through an Arizona driver education program at a high school or a commercial driving school approved by the MVD, or by a parent or guardian certifying in writing that the student driver has completed at least 30 hours of supervised driving practice, including at least 10 hours at night. The permit is good for 12 months.
All new drivers should study the Arizona Driver License Manual before taking the written test!
Graduated Instruction Permit Requirements
- Must be at least 15 years and 6 months old.
- Must provide necessary application documents: either a birth certificate or passport, and social security card or school ID.
- Must pass written and vision tests.
- Must have a licensed driver who is at least 21 years of age seated in the front seat next to him or her at all times.
- Must always carry the learner permit while driving.
Graduated Driver License (Class G)
At age 16, you are eligible to apply for a graduated driver license. This license allows a teen to drive alone under certain conditions.
Graduated Driver License Requirements
- Must be at least 16 years old.
- Must hold an Arizona class G permit for at least six months.
- Must have completed 20 hours of supervised, behind-the-wheel daytime driving practice and 10 hours of supervised, behind the wheel nighttime driving practice — a total of 30 hours — before applying for graduated driver license.
- For the first six months, a teen with a graduated driver license cannot drive between the hours of midnight to 5 a.m. unless one of these conditions is met:
- A parent or legal guardian who has a valid driver license is sitting in the front passenger seat.
- The teen is driving to or from a sanctioned school sponsored activity, sanctioned religious activity, place of employment or family emergency.
- A teen with a Graduated Driver License shall not drive a motor vehicle containing more than one passenger under the age of 18 on a public highway unless one of these conditions is met:
- The passengers are the teen driver’s siblings.
- The teen driver is accompanied by a parent or legal guardian with a valid driver license who occupies the front passenger seat.
Parents Responsible for Damages a Minor Causes while Driving
Under Arizona law, the parent or legal guardian who signs the minor’s license application is jointly and severally liable with the minor for any damage the minor causes by negligence or willful misconduct. If the parent is married, the parent binds his or her spouse to be responsible for damages the minor causes. But a parent or guardian is not liable for such damages if there is issuance covering the minor in at least the minimum amounts required by law.
Insurance Coverage Requirements
In Arizona, all drivers must be covered under liability insurance. All liability policies must include at least $15,000 bodily injury per person, $30,000 bodily injury per accident, and $10,000 property damage per accident.
Failure to provide and display valid insurance is a civil offense. For a first offense, the driver is looking at a $500 fine and a three-month license suspension.
For teens younger than 18, the application for an instruction permit or driver license must be signed by at least one adult (see below). The adult will be responsible for any negligence or willful misconduct when the teen is driving.
The application must be signed by:
- one natural/adoptive parent if married to the other natural/adoptive parent.
- both natural/adoptive parents if not married to each other but share joint custody.
- one natural/adoptive parent with sole custody.
- a legal guardian (proof required).
- a foster parent living with the minor (proof required).
- an employer of the minor (parents’ death certificates must be shown).
Ready to start driving?
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