In the State of Texas, as with nearly every state, teenagers are subject to graduating driving privileges, meaning that as they age, they are granted greater driving freedom and subject to fewer driving restrictions. If you are a teen living in the State of Texas, having an understanding of teenage driving laws is vital – otherwise, you could find yourself being cited or losing your provisional license! Read more below:
Texas Drivers License for Teens
Minors in the State of Texas can acquire three separate types of license, each granted different driving privileges. These license types are:
If you are at least 15 years of age, have completed the required driver education classroom training, and meet all other licensing requirements, you can apply for a learner license. With this license, you will be able to drive while supervised by a licensed individual 21 years of age or older so that you can gain invaluable experience behind the wheel. With a Texas learners permit, you can practice and gain the experience necessary to obtain your provisional license. A learner license expires on the applicant’s 18th birthday party.
Minor Restricted Driver License (MRDL)
Also known as a “hardship license,” an MRDL is good for one year (it expires on the applicant’s next birthday), and applies to individuals who qualify based on specific criteria. Typically, qualified individuals are at least 15 years of age, meet standard licensing and Texas driver education requirements, and demonstrate a need to drive based on some sort of hardship or qualifying factor. With a minor restricted driver license, minors can drive to and from school, or to and from a place of employment. If you believe that you qualify for a Texas MRDL, inquire about teenage driving laws at your local DPS office to learn more.
A provisional license applies to all minors, and expires on the applicant’s 18th birthday. With a provisional license, individuals no longer require adult supervision. However, they are still subject to curfews and passenger limitations. If you are the holder of a provisional Texas drivers license, you cannot:
- Drive between midnight and 5AM, except in the case of an emergency or for school-related activities
- With more than one passenger in the vehicle under the age of 21 who is not a family member.
- May not drive while operating or using a cellphone or wireless device
Adhering to these Texas teenage driving laws will ensure that you maintain a good driving record – and will help ensure your safety as well.
Drive Safely and Legally
You may be encouraged by your friends to break these laws, but don’t! The risk simply isn’t worth it. If you are being pressured to drive during curfew hours or take a group of friends out in your car, just say “no.” It’s that simple. Be safe!