How to Apply for a California Driving Permit (for under age 18)?
How to Apply for a California Driving Permit (for under age 18)?

In order to get a driving permit, you must be at least 15 and 1⁄2 years of age. While 15 and 1⁄2 is the minimum California driver’s permit age, people of all ages above that threshold can get a driver’s permit. 

A provisional instruction permit is for new drivers between the ages of 15 and 1⁄2 to 18 years of age. Since drivers who get this permit are younger and less life-experienced than those over 18, there are more restrictions.

If you’re at least 15 ½ but under 18 years old at the time of applying for a learner’s permit in California, you need to take Driver’s Ed course. After that, you can go to DMV to take the written test.

The exam will test your knowledge on roadway signs, rules, and best practices. It involves an eye exam and written test. The exam has 46 questions. You will need to get at least 38 correct to pass. Bring your completed learner’s permit application (not available online), a certificate of completion of Driver Ed course, proof of Social Security, birth certificate, proof of identity, and proof of California residency. Your parent or guardian will need to sign your application and the certificate.

If you pass the permit exam and pay the fee, you’ll receive your California learner’s permit.
Minors — California Driving Permit Rules:
  • Guardian supervision and assistance with the application process
  • You can’t drive alone 
  • A guardian or adult at least 25 years or older must sit in the passenger seat when you drive
  • Must pass the knowledge exam with a minimum score of 38/46
  • Insurance is required at all times within the vehicle