Connecticut Driver Licensing Law

Obtaining a Connecticut Learner's Permit

Before earning a driver's license, all 16- and 17-year-olds must first obtain a learner's permit. To apply for a permit, the applicant must:

  • Receive permission form their parent or legal guardian. If a parent or guardian cannot come to the DMV office with the applicant, they must complete a notarized consent form.
  • Collect and complete the required application documents and provide the required identification materials
  • Pay a $40 testing fee
  • Take and pass a vision test and a 25-question knowledge test based on the Connecticut Driver's Manual
  • Pay a $19 learner's permit fee (the two payments must be made separately)

Learner's Permit Restrictions

  • Drivers may not have any passengers other than a qualified driving training and their parents or legal guardian
  • All passengers must wear seatbelts
  • Drivers may not use a cell phone or any other electronic device
  • The only passengers a permit holder is allowed to drive with are licensed driving instructors as they are giving instructions or one person who is providing instruction, has been licensed for four consecutive years, and is at least 20 years old.

    New permit holders are required to complete at least 40 hours of behind-the-wheel training before applying for a driver's license. Additionally, permit holders must complete an eight-hour safe driving course and their parents must complete a two-hour course, with the permit holder, concerning teen driving laws.

    Obtaining a Driver License

    After obtaining a learner's permit, there are three training combinations that may be pursued to complete the driver training requirements for 16- and 17-year-olds:

    • Commercial Driving School: 30 hours classroom training, including the Safe Driving Practices course, two hours of parent training and 40 hours of practice driving
    • High School (Secondary) Driver Education: 30 hours classroom training, including the Safe Driving Practices course, two hours of parent training and 40 hours of practice driving
    • Home Training: 22 hours classroom type training and an eight hour Safe Driving Practices course at a commercial or secondary school, including the two-hour parent training, and 40 hours of practice driving

    Once the required driver training has been completed and the learner's permit has been held for at least 120 days, the holder is eligible make an appointment to take a road test. The day of the road test, the applicant must bring the following:

    • Learner's permit
    • Completed Application for Driver License signed by a qualified trainer, attesting to the completion of the driver education and practice requirements
    • A CS-1 Driver Education Certificate verifying completion of driver training
    • A vehicle that can be used for the test that is registered and insured
    • License fee

    Once the road test is passed, the applicant is eligible for a driver's license. The following driving restrictions apply:

    • For the first six months after obtaining the license, the holder is still subject to the passenger restrictions placed on a learner's permit holder. For the second six months, the license holder may also drive with members of their immediate family.
    • Before turning 18, a license holder may not drive between 11 PM and 5 AM unless it is for employment, school or religious activities, or a medical necessity.

    Penalties for Minor Drivers in Violation of the Law

    • Drivers 16 -and 17-years old and each of their passengers are required to wear a seat belt. If either the driver or the passenger fails to wear the seat belt, each could be cited for a seat belt violation and fined $75.
    • 16- or 17-year-olds who commit certain moving violations will have their drivers' licenses seized by a police officer and will be suspended for 48 hours. In addition, the police officer is authorized to remove the vehicle from the scene. The driver's license will be held for that 48-hour period. In order to regain possession of the license after the 48-hour period, the teen and his or her parent or legal guardian must go to the police department and sign a written statement acknowledging the license has been returned.
    • Certain offenses will trigger participation in the driver retraining program. Anyone age 24 or younger who commits two or more moving violations or suspension violations must complete the DMV certified driver retraining program. After completing the operator retraining program, anyone becoming a repeat offender within 36 months faces a license suspension.

    Need more information on state laws? Learn more about the laws where you live.

    Note: Our attorneys are licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland, and Virginia. This information is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, and Virginia, although if you are injured in an accident, we have relationships with other personal injury attorneys and lawyers throughout the United States.