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Representing Accident & Injury Victims

Handling Personal Injury, Workers' Compensation and Criminal Defense Cases


Georgia Teen Driving Laws 

Georgia Teen Driving Laws

The state of Georgia has created a specific law for teen drivers to help those new to the road focus on safety first. The law targets teens between the ages of 16 and 18.

Called “Joshua’s Law,” drivers in this age group are not allowed to have any peer passengers for the initial six months after receiving their driver’s license. The only people allowed to be in the vehicle with them are certain family members. The law states that teen drivers can only have one peer passenger while behind the wheel for the next six months.

It is important to note that Joshua’s Law is just one example of laws targeted at teenage drivers in Georgia. Those between the ages of 16 and 18 must also adhere to curfew restrictions.

Whether you are a teen who is ready to drive or a teen parent, understanding these laws and abiding by them is imperative.

Laws, Rules, and Regulations for Georgia’s Teen Drivers

In 1997, the state of Georgia created TADRA – Teenage and Adult Responsibility Act. It was designed to put requirements in place for those aged 15 to 18 who want to get their driver’s licenses.

According to TADRA, all teens must move through provisional license restrictions. These are designed to prove that the teen is ready for the huge responsibility of driving. The process is extended if a teen receives a violation during this probationary period.

It is worth noting that TADRA is about more than just following the rules that go along with driving. Teens must also meet the set educational requirements. An example would be a 17-year-old who drops out of high school without graduating. This individual may be prohibited from receiving their driver’s license.

Obtaining a Learner’s Permit

Teens can apply for a learner’s permit starting at age 15 in Georgia. However, to qualify, they must meet the following requirements:

  • Complete the permit application
  • Pass the vision test
  • Pass the knowledge test
  • Have a parent, guardian, or driving instructor sign the permit application

The teen must be accompanied by a parent, guardian, or driving instructor when taking the permit test. Before taking the test, they must also pay a $10 fee and submit an identity verification, such as a birth certificate. To take the test, the teen must also provide a Certificate of Attendance from their high school that has been signed and dated by a school representative within the past 30 days.

If the vision and knowledge portions of the exam are passed, the teen can receive a learner’s permit. After the learner’s permit is earned, the teen is only permitted to drive with a licensed adult who is at least 21 years old and has a license in good-standing. This individual must also be sitting in the passenger seat at all times.

Obtaining a Provisional Driver’s License

After having a learner’s permit for one year and one day, a teen may apply for their Class D provisional license. For those who are under 18, it is required to show proof of being enrolled in high school or provide a copy of your GED or high school diploma. If they are enrolled in a GED program, proof of this must be shown to be eligible for the test.

Before getting the Class D provisional license, teens who are 16 must complete the following:

  • DDS Parent-Teen Driving Guide. This includes 40 hours of on-road experience, with six hours of the time being night-time driving.
  • 30 hours of driver’s education. The 30 hours must be included in a classroom or online.
  • ADAP (Alcohol and Drug Awareness Program). This course is taught at many schools and can be taken online. You must show proof of completing this before taking the driving test.

If you cannot meet the requirements above, you must wait until age 17 to get your driver’s license. If you can meet all the above requirements and pass the tests, you can get your Class D provisional license. This license also comes with certain restrictions, which include the following:

  • No driving between 12 AM and 5 AM (no exceptions).
  • Only immediate family members can be in the vehicle for the first six months.
  • During the second six months, just one person under the age of 21 who is not a member of your family can be a passenger.
  • After 12 months, with no incidents, three passengers under 21 can ride in the vehicle.

Laws for Cell Phone Use for Teenage Drivers in Georgia

Texting and driving is a huge problem that impacts everyone. However, teens are even more susceptible to participating in this potentially dangerous and deadly habit. Cell phone use is a common type of distracted driving that goes beyond just making a call or texting. Posting on social media or browsing the feed while behind the wheel causes thousands of accidents each year.

Texting and driving are illegal in Georgia. However, it is also against the law to have any device in your hands while driving. This law is part of the “Hands-Free Georgia Act,” which became effective in July 2018.

If a driver is caught with their phone in their hand while driving, they will receive a fine of $50 for the initial offense and one point against their license. Second offenses within 24 months result in a fine of $100.

Protecting Your License as a Teen Driver in Georgia

As a teen driver in Georgia, you must know and obey the rules and restrictions that go with your license. If you are involved in an accident caused by someone else, you have legal rights just like any other driver.

Contact our legal team at the Law Offices of Matthew C. Hines for more information about protecting your rights and recovering compensation.

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