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  • Drivers Permits in Nebraska

    Rural Permits

    There are several different kinds of permits, and the one you obtain first depends on where you live. If you live in a rural area, you can get a permit at a younger age.

    School Learner's Permit

    You may qualify for a school learner's permit (LPE) if you:

    • Are between 14 years old and 16 years old.
    • Live in a rural area (outside a city of 5,000 or more people and 1.5 or more miles away from your school; or your school is outside a city of 5,000 or more people)
    • Want to practice your skills before applying for your permit

    You must pass written and vision tests to get your LPE. The application fee is $10.50.

    Once you obtain your LPE, you're allowed to drive as long as you're accompanied by a 21-year-old (or older) licensed driver.

    Your LPE will be valid for 3 months, and can be renewed. If you lose your LPE, you'll need to contact your local DMV exam location.

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    School Permit

    The next step is getting a school permit (SCP). An SCP is also for rural drivers.

    • You can apply for an SCP once you've had an LPE for no less than 2 months. (This means you must be at least 14 years old and two months old to apply for your SCP, but younger than 16 years old and 3 months to receive an SCP).
    • You can drive to and from school by yourself, but you must have a licensed driver over 21 years old with you when you drive anywhere else.

    The kinds of tests you take for your SCP depend on the method of "practice" you use:

    • If you successfully complete a Nebraska DMV-approved driver safety course, your vision, written, and driving tests will be waived.
    • If you submit a completed School Permit/Provisional Operator’s Permit 50-Hour Certification signed by a licensed driver over 21 years old, you'll need to take the vision and driving tests, but your written test will be waived. (NOTE: In order to use this testing format, you must surrender your LPE that was issued after January 1, 2006 and expired for no more than 1 year.)

    The application fee is $10.50, and the SCP is valid until you turn 16 years old and 3 months. If you lose your SCP, contact your local DMV exam location. Once it expires, it's time to apply for your provisional operator permit.

    Non-Rural Permits

    Learner Permit

    A learner permit (LPD) is the first permit designed for non-rural drivers. Simply put, non-rural drivers are those individuals who don't live in rural areas.

    You must be 15 years old to obtain your LPD. You can apply when you're 60 days from turning 15 years old, but you're LPD won't be issued until your birthday.

    You must pass both a vision and a written test; however, you can waive the written test if you once had an LPE that was issued after January 1, 2006.

    The application fee is $10.50, and the LPD expires after 1 year. If you lose your LPD, you'll need to contact your local DMV exam location. After it expires, it's time to apply for your provisional operator permit.

    Provisional Operator Permit

    Now we get to the good stuff―the provisional operator permit, or the POP. POPs are for drivers who:

    • Have had their SCPs or LPDs for the required amount of time, and are 16 years old. (You can apply for your POP when you're within 60 days of turning 16, but you won't get it until you're 16.)

    POPs require the same testing procedures as SCPs (see above). So, if you took the SCP route, you won't have to go through the same testing format. If you obtained your LPD first, you will be required.

    With a POP, you can drive by yourself between 6 a.m. and midnight. Between midnight and 6 a.m. you must have a licensed driver over 21 years old with you, unless you're heading to or from a work- or school-related event.

    The application fee is $17.50, and the POP expires once you turn 18 years old. If you lose your POP, you'll need to contact your local DMV exam location. There's really no need to renew it, because you're ready for your Nebraska operator license!

    Regular Operator License

    If you've maintained a clean driving record (no more than 3 points) for at least 12 months, you can apply for your regular operator license without taking the vision and written tests.

    If you have 6 or more points on your record, you'll need to take a driver improvement course before you can apply for your regular operator license.

    Documentation Required

    No matter what sort of permit you're applying for, you'll need to present 1 document that shows both your full name and date of birth. You'll also need to present 2 documents that show your principal address (or the address of your parent or guardian). In some cases, you may need to provide proof of your Social Security number.

    Remember to Practice!

    Regardless of which learner permit you apply for, or when you test for your operator permit, it's best to go the extra mile when it comes to studying and practicing for your written and driving tests.

    In addition to the Nebraska Driver's Manual Nebraska provides, DMV.org has practice tests, driver education, and driver training information. Be sure to check it out!

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