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How to Apply for a New Driver's License in Colorado

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Getting drivers licenses in Colorado is mandatory for residents who plan to operate an automobile. New drivers license applicants must meet the minimum age requirement and show various proofs of identification at a Colorado DOR office. Also, CO drivers license applicants must pass all license exams, which consist of vision, written and road skills tests.

Did you know? Studies show that 7 out of 10 drivers fail the written drivers test on their first try. Reduce your chances of having to retake the exam by completing an online practice driving test. Our Colorado Practice Test was designed to help you successfully pass the knowledge test, the first time.

How to Apply for a Colorado Driver's License:

  • Be at least 16 years of age.
  • Present the necessary identification documents.
  • Complete a driver education course.
  • Pass the vision, written and road tests.
  • Make the appropriate payment.

Types of Drivers Licenses in Colorado

Colorado drivers license privileges are issued based upon the type of vehicle the driver intends to operate. The class of driving licenses include commercial vehicles.

  • Class R - Basic license for the operation of a noncommercial automobile.
  • Class A, B and C - Commercial Drivers License (CDL) for the operation of commercial motor vehicles.

CO DOR motorcycle endorsements are available to add to any of the above mentioned driving license classes.

First-Time Driver (Under 21) in Colorado

Colorado new driving license applicants younger than 21 years of age are considered minor drivers by the CO DOR and therefore must gain their driving privileges gradually. Beginning at 15 years of age, a new driver may obtain a learners permit. Restricted DMV drivers licenses are available to applicants beginning at 16 years of age and older.

For more information, visit our Learner's Permit page.

Colorado New Drivers (Over 21)

CO Driver's Study Guide and Driver's Practice Test

The Colorado basic written test is given to first-time driving license applicants. Along with completing a drivers education course, applicants must pass the written drivers test to qualify for licensure. Our learners permit practice exam and study guide readies drivers to pass the CO DMV test on the first try. It features questions and color illustrations on road signs, driver safety and more.

How to Apply for Drivers Licenses in CO

To apply for drivers licenses in Colorado, residents must be 16 years of age and older and present the appropriate documentation.

  • Proof of identity, name and date of birth.
  • Proof of Social Security Number.
  • Proof of lawful presence in the United States.
  • Proof of Colorado residency.

CO Eligibility Requirements

Colorado driving licenses are issued to residents who meet the minimum qualifications. Applicants must be 16 years of age and older, have passed a written drivers test, completed a drivers education course or passed a road skills test. New drivers license candidates must also show proof of identification and parental consent if younger than 18 years of age.

CO Written/Driving Test

To get drivers licenses or learners permits in Colorado, driving applicants must first pass the basic written test. The CO DMV written drivers test consists of questions on traffic safety laws, road signs, the effects of driving under the influence and more. Learner's permit drivers who take a driving permit pretest are more likely to pass the written exam on their first attempt.

CO Driving Test

The final step that new drivers license applicants must complete is to pass a road skills test. The driving test will examine your ability to operate a car under various conditions. Colorado driving tests must be scheduled ahead of your visit to a DMV office.

New Colorado Resident

Drivers new to Colorado must transfer their out-of-state license within 30 days of becoming a resident. To apply for a drivers license, new residents must bring their current driving license along with proof of identification, legal presence and residency documents to a Colorado DMV office. In most cases, applicants 16 years of age and older who present a valid out-of-state drivers license are not required to take a written or driving test. A vision screening will be conducted, however.

New Colorado residents should be aware that they must also transfer their car registration credentials within 90 days of establishing residency. Prior to applying for vehicle registration, drivers must submit to a vehicle emissions inspection if their car is seven model years old or older and meets other qualifications set by the Colorado Department of Health and Environment. Vehicle emissions tests are conducted at designated stations throughout the state.

Replace Drivers License in Colorado

Drivers license holders younger than 21 years of age may apply for a DMV duplicate license if their original has been lost, stolen or destroyed. Replacing driving licenses is however not permitted for drivers 21 years of age and older. Adult drivers must instead complete a drivers license renewal process.

Locate a DMV in Colorado

Find a Colorado DMV location near you. Our CO DMV contact page contains listings of each Department of Revenue and driver service office. You can access telephone numbers and other location details to assist you in making DMV appointments for the driving license services you require.

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