Drivers Permits in Virginia
First-time teen drivers in Virginia must get learner's permits before being licensed. You do this at your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) customer service center.
You'll need to show two proofs of identity, one proof of legal presence, and one proof of Virginia residency, as well as proof of your Social Security number, if you have one. The DMV has a comprehensive list of the documents you can use as proof.
Be prepared to pay for your combined learner's permit and driver's license. The fee for your license is $4 for each year. In addition, your learner's permit requires a one-time fee of $3. Depending on how old you are when your permit is issued, your license will be valid for between three and seven years.
Of course, if you are under 18, your parent or legal guardian must give written consent for you to apply for a learner's permit (unless you are an emancipated minor or married). Your parent or guardian should be with you when you apply.
A learner's permit allows you to operate a motor vehicle with a validly licensed driver, who's at least 21 years old, seated next to you. Your supervising driver can be 18 or older if he or she is your legal guardian, sibling, step-sibling, or half-sibling.
This allows someone to teach you how to drive while you practice driving. You'll get experience at
driver's ed, but you should also practice outside of school. The more you practice, the better you will become.
When you apply for your permit, you will also apply for your driver's license and pay fees for your permit and license. To get your learner's permit, you must pass a vision screening, as well as the knowledge exam, otherwise known as the written test.
The Virginia Driver's Manual is a good place to learn the basics so you can pass your written test.
You must hold your learner's permit for at least nine months. When you're at least 16 years and three months old, you can get your driver's license, provided you meet certain conditions.
Don't sweat the loss. Replacement is simple. Visit any customer service center and complete a Driver's License and Identification Card Application. Bring two forms of identification (if you're under 19 only one primary form of identification is required) and proof of U.S. citizenship, or what the DMV terms "legal presence." Cost: $2.
Permits are valid for three to seven years, expiring on your birthday when you reach an age divisible by five (20, 35, 40...). But given Virginia's unique permit system, this is almost a moot point. If you're under 19, the state awards you a driver's license after holding a permit for nine months and successfully completing a mandatory driver education program. If you're 19 and older, you only need to hold a permit for 30 days before you're eligible for a driver's license.
The written test features multiple-choice questions based on information contained in Virginia's driver manual. Study the manual, and you should have no problem acing the test. To get a sense of what to expect, look at a
Other Topics in This Section
Your Opinion Matters To Us!Send Feedback
- Drivers Training Requirements: Do You Have to Enroll in Drivers Training?
- How to Choose a Drivers Training Program
- Who’s Required to Take Drivers Training
- Transferring a Learner Permit to a New State
- Teen Driver Safety: Seat Belt Use
- Graduating From a Drivers Permit to a Restricted Drivers License
We put a lot of effort into making our content helpful & accurate. Please let us know if you see something that isn't clear or correct; we are here to ease any frustrations you may have while navigating DMV topics. We are not a government agency, please reach out to your local DMV, insurance agent, or respective professional for further assistance on specific situations.