Massachusetts Driving Rules & Resources
At age 16, teens may apply for a learner's permit at a full-service Registry of Motor Vehicles office. Teens must bring proof of identification and be accompanied by a parent or guardian. After completing an application, teens must pass a 25 question exam and a vision test to obtain the permit.
Learner's permits allow teens to drive accompanied by a licensed driver at least 21 years old with at least one year of driving experience. Teens may begin classroom driver education as young as age 15 years and 9 months, but may not begin driving until age 16. During the learner's permit phase, teens are required to complete 40 hours of practice driving while supervised by a licensed driver age 21 or older.
Junior Operator's License (JOL)
At age 16 ½, teens may apply for a JOL. They must have completed:
- 30-Hour Driver Ed Course
- 18-Hour In-Car Driving Lessons (12 hours of behind-the-wheel training and 6 hours of in-car observation)
- 2-Hour Parent Orientation
- An additional 40 hours of supervised practice driving (30 hours for applicants who have successfully completed a driver skills development program in a closed, off-road course)
- Six months minimum of having a learner's permit with a clean driving record
Upon successful completion of the driving test, teens will then be issued a JOL.
Teens holding a JOL may not drive with any passengers under age 18 (other than an immediate family member) for the first six months unless accompanied by a licensed driver at least 21 years old. They may not drive between 12:30 a.m. and 5 a.m. unless accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. The minimum age at which restrictions may be lifted is age 17 for passenger restrictions and age 18 for nighttime restrictions.
At age 18, teens who have held a JOL for at least 12 months are eligible for an unrestricted driver's license.