North Dakota Driver Licensing Law & Teen Driver Law

Obtaining a North Dakota Instruction Permit

Fourteen and 15-year-olds in North Dakota are eligible to receive an Instruction Permit. This license must be held for 12 months or until the teen's 16th birthday, whichever comes first. If 16, drivers must have held an instruction permit for a minimum of six months.

Requirements when applying for an Instruction Permit include:

  • Proof of identification, legal presence, and North Dakota residence
  • Applications must contain the individual's Social Security number
  • Applicants must pass a vision screening
  • Applicants must pass a written examination on road rules and traffic signs
  • If under 18, a sponsor's signature is required
  • If under 16, driver's education must be completed before the road test will be administered
  • If under 16, permit holders must complete at least 50 hours of supervised practice driving in variable conditions. A parent or guardian must verify the hours, signing on the day of the applicant's road test.

Any time you operate with an instruction permit, a person with a valid license for the class of vehicle being driven, who is at least 18 years of age and has had at least three years of driving experience, must ride in the seat beside you.

Obtaining a Restricted Class D Operator's License

Once the driver successfully passes the road test and has driven on a learner's permit for at least 12 months, a 15-year-old will be issued a Restricted Class D Operator's License.

Possession of this license allows the driver to operate a vehicle between the hours of 5AM and 9PM unless driving between work, a school activity, or religious activity and home. A parent, guardian or licensed adult at least 18 years old is required to accompany the driver during the restricted hours. A driver with a restricted license is allowed to drive alone, however teens under 16 may only drive a vehicle belonging to a parent, legal guardian, grandparent, sibling, aunt, or uncle. The number of passengers is limited to the vehicle manufacturer's recommended capacity.

In all instances, drivers and passengers under age 18 must wear safety belts. Additionally, North Dakota law bans teens under age 18 from using a cell phone while driving, except for emergencies. Everyone, regardless of age, is prohibited from reading, composing, or sending text messages or accessing the internet while driving.

Upon turning 16, the restricted Class D Operator's License will transition to an unrestricted license.

The permit or license of a minor under 18 years of age will be cancelled if they accumulate six or more points on their driving record or commit an alcohol-related offense while operating a motor vehicle. This includes a minor in possession or minor in consumption of alcoholic beverages.

A minor, under 18, whose permit or license has been cancelled in this manner will be considered as never having had a permit or license before. An instruction permit will be issued after successful completion of the written and vision tests.

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

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