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  • Behind the Wheel in Kentucky

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    Kentucky Behind-the-Wheel Training

    If you're a teenager applying for your first driver's license in Kentucky, you must complete a period of supervised behind-the-wheel practice while holding your learner's permit. This is a requirement of the graduated driver license (GDL) program administered by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.

    Behind-the-wheel practice will help you develop your driving skills, prepare you to pass the DMV road test, and get you ready to drive unsupervised with your unrestricted driver's license. Your Kentucky driver's training requirement is designed to help you build your confidence and gain experience driving in a variety of road conditions, times of the day and situations.

    On this page you'll find information about your behind-the-wheel requirements and how to apply for your first driver's license.

    KY Behind-the-Wheel Requirements

    If you are younger than 18 years old, you'll need to complete at least 60 hours of supervised driving practice while you hold your learner's permit.

    You can begin the Kentucky DMV GDL program by applying for your learner's permit once you turn 16 years old.

    For more information about applying for your learner's permit, please visit our Driver’s Permits in Kentucky page.

    While your required Kentucky Driver's Ed course will not include any behind-the-wheel training, you may be able to sign up for in-car driver's training with a professional driver's training course for additional driving practice and experience. For more information about your options for enrolling a driver's training course:

    • Contact the Kentucky DMV.
    • Talk to your local school district.
    • Look up Driver's Ed, driving school or driver's training in your phone book or on the internet.

    Kentucky Supervised Driving Practice

    With your learner's permit, you'll be able to practice driving with a licensed adult who is at least 21 years old.

    Before advancing from your learner's permit to the next stages of the Kentucky DMV GDL program, you'll need to complete at least 60 hours of supervised behind-the-wheel practice, with at least 10 hours completed at night.

    NOTE: You cannot drive between 12 a.m. and 6 a.m. if you are younger than 18 years old.

    When you apply for your provisional driver's license, you'll need to submit a Practice Driving Log and Verification Form, which must be signed and certified by your parent/legal guardian.

    You can access the form on the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet website by entering your name and learner's permit number.

    Next Steps – Intermediate Driver's License

    You can take your driving test and apply for your intermediate driver's license after you:

    • Complete your 60 hours of behind-the-wheel practice and submit your verification.
    • Have held your learner's permit for at least 180 days.
    • Have completed a driver education classroom/online course. (Please visit our Driver’s Ed in Kentucky page for more information.)

    NOTE: You must not have received any traffic violations during your entire learner's permit stage.

    Once you satisfy the requirements above, you can contact your local Kentucky County Clerk office to schedule your road test and obtain your intermediate driver's license.

    For more information, please visit our Applying for a New License (Teen Drivers) in Kentucky page.

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