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Graduated Driver License (GDL) Program

The Graduated Driver License (GDL) program was implemented January 1, 2002 to give new drivers the chance to improve their driving skills over time in lower-risk environments.

Phase One

Individuals who are under 18 years of age must hold a valid learner license or a minor restricted driver license (MRDL) for a minimum of six months prior to the issuance of a provisional Class A, B or C driver license. Under the GDL program, there is not a minimum time a person must hold a restricted motorcycle or moped license before he/she can apply for a Class M license.

If the individual’s license is suspended during Phase One, then the initial six-month period is extended by the number of days of the suspension because the license is invalid during that time.

NOTE: Phase One does not apply to Class M or MRDL holders.

Phase Two

Phase Two restricts the driving privileges of individuals who are under 18 years of age during the 12-month period following the issuance of an original Class A, B, C or M driver license (provisional license).

These individuals may not drive a motor vehicle:

  1. With more than one passenger in the vehicle under the age of 21 who is not a family member.
  2. Between midnight and 5:00 a.m. unless the operation of the vehicle is necessary for the driver to work, to attend or participate in a school-related activity, or due to a medical emergency.

Individuals who are under 18 years of age and obtained their driver license on or after September 1, 2009 are restricted from using a wireless communication device, including a hands-free device, until they reach the age of 18, except in the case of an emergency.

Completing the GDL Program

A provisional license will have a GDL completion date printed on the license and will state the following: TRC 545.424 applies until mm/dd/yy.

Once the GDL program is completed, these rules no longer apply but the license is still marked “provisional” until the individual turns 18.