For teenagers, 16 is a magical number. They usually can’t wait to enjoy the freedom and independence they believe comes with getting a driver’s license. However, their inexperience, tendency to speed, and tendency to become distracted puts them at higher risk of getting into a car crash. In an attempt to keep newly licensed teens safer behind the wheel, Arizona teen driver laws require a multi-stage licensing process.
The graduated driver licensing (GDL) program limits high-risk driving situations for new drivers.
Unfortunately, not every new teen driver follows the law. A teenager with risky driving habits puts everyone at risk. Their dangerous driving may cause death or injury to passengers in their vehicle, pedestrians, cyclists, or other motorists. It’s important for parents and guardians to understand that an at-fault teen driver may be held legally responsible for the damage they cause.
If you were hurt in a wreck caused by a teen driver, contact us for a free consultation to go over your options.
Permit and License Rules Under Arizona Teen Driver Laws
Teen Driver’s Permit Rules
In Arizona, teens over 15 1/2 years old can apply for a driver’s permit. They can do this by visiting their local driver exam office with their parents and two forms of identification. After passing a written driver’s knowledge test and vision exam, they then receive a driver’s permit.
This permit, however, doesn’t give them immediate permission to drive solo. They can only drive under the supervision of a licensed driver over 21 years of age that is seated next to them in the front passenger seat.
Arizona Teen Driver’s License Rules
Before a teen can apply for a graduated driver’s license (Class G), they must:
- Be at least 16 years old
- Have had their permit for at least six months
- Have completed 30 hours of supervised practice driving
Additionally, 10 of the 30 hours must have been performed at night, or they must show proof of completing a driver’s education program approved by the Arizona Motor Vehicle Department.
After these requirements are met, teens then need to go back to the DMV to pass a road driving test with an examiner.
Arizona Teen Driver Laws
Once all the tests are passed and the newly licensed driver has keys in hand, they have another six months of driving restrictions. Arizona Teen Driver Laws state that newly licensed teens:
- Can’t drive between midnight and 5 a.m. (with some exceptions)
- Are limited to one passenger (non-family member) under 18 (unless parent/legal guardian is seated in the front passenger seat)
- Must ensure that all passengers wear a seat belt at all times
- May not use a wireless communication device for any reason except during an emergency in which stopping the vehicle is:
a) Impossible, or
b) Will create an additional emergency or safety hazard
These restrictions can be extended beyond six months, and their license can be revoked if they are found guilty of willful misconduct or negligence while driving.