Young Drivers

Because all teens are new to the responsibilities and experience of driving, Washington and more than 30 other states, have passed restrictive licensing laws. These laws help teens drive more responsibly and avoid being in injury or fatal collisions. Washington's Intermediate License law requires more parent involvement to get our youngest drivers the experience they need to be safe drivers for the rest of their lives. And the law encourages teens to respect alcohol and drug prohibitions, and to behave more responsibly behind the wheel.

Elements of an Intermediate or Graduated driver licensing program:

  • Age 15 or older — an instruction permit authorizing driving only while supervised by a licensed driver with at least 5 years of driving experience. Must be at least 15½ or actively enrolled in an approved driver's education course.
  • Age 16 until 18 — an intermediate license that reduces the opportunity for inexperienced drivers to drive in high–risk conditions. Warning letters are sent to drivers that get even one ticket, and drivers who commit two or more driving offenses are suspended from driving.
  • Age 18 or older — a full privilege driver license.

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