How to Apply for a Learners Permit in West Virginia
Applying for a West Virginia learners permit is a procedure reserved for young drivers who would like to start their driving careers. However, the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will issue a drivers permit only to applicants who meet the full set of eligibility requirements. Overall, obtaining this learning license is the first step of the state’s graduated driver’s licensing (GDL) program, which is designed to gradually prepare novice drivers for the responsibilities of holding an unrestricted license to drive.
Despite the fact that young motorists are required to get a WV DMV learners permit first, adult drivers must also obtain an instruction permit if they have never been issued a driving credential before. However, unlike younger applicant, motorists older than 18 years of age will only be required to hold a permit for a short period of time before applying for a full driver’s license. Learn more about the West Virginia learning license and its application process by reading the sections below.
West Virginia Learners Permit Eligibility Guidelines
You will only be able to obtain a drivers learners permit in West Virginia if you meet the requirements set forth by the state DMV. Generally, the criteria to obtain an instruction permit will vary slightly based on the type of permit license you are getting. These general drivers permit requirements include:
- You are a state resident and legally present in the United States.
- You are at least 15 years of age, but younger than 18 years of age, if applying for the GDL instruction permit.
- You are 18 years of age or older, if applying for the non-GDL permit.
- You are mentally and physically fit to operate a motor vehicle.
- You can prove that you have the knowledge needed to operate a vehicle by passing a written test.
- You do not hold any other driving credential that was suspended by any jurisdiction.
- You are enrolled in or have graduated from an educational institution, if younger than 18 years of age.
- You have parental permission to apply for a permit, if younger than 18 years of age.
One of the most important learners permit requirements in WV is collecting the paperwork needed to prove your eligibility. The documents needed to obtain a learning license include proof of identity, birth date, state residency and Social Security Number.
As a primary identification proof, you can submit a birth certificate or a valid passport. If you were born outside of the country, you will need the corresponding documents issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), such as a permanent resident card or an employment authorization document.
To prove your state residency during a learners permit application, you will need to submit two documents with a street address, such as utility bills or tax records. Finally, you will need a Social Security card or tax statements to prove your Social Security Number. If you are ineligible for an SSN, you will need to submit the denial letter issued by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
How to Apply for a Learners Permit in West Virginia
If you are wondering how and where to get learners permit in West Virginia, note that you will be required to submit the necessary items in person through a nearby DMV regional office. The process of getting learners permit is comprised of the following straightforward steps:
- Fill out the Application for a Driver’s License or Identification Card (Form DMV-DS-23P). Have your parent or legal guardian provide his or her consent on the application form, if you are younger than 18 years of age.
- Submit the full set of paperwork, as outlined in previous sections.
- Provide a Driver’s Eligibility Certificate issued by your educational institution or a high school diploma, if younger than 18 years of age.
- Pass the eye test and the knowledge test.
- Have a photo taken.
- Arrange payment for the applicable fees.
Once you apply for learner permit in WV, the state DMV will process your request and issue you a new learning license. If you apply for the regular instruction permit as an adult motorist, you will receive a renewable 90-day permit that can be renewed once before you have to retest. If you have requested the GDL drivers permit as a teenage driver, however, you will receive a non-renewable credential that expires 30 days after you reach 18 years of age.
The West Virginia Drivers Permit Test
Passing the DMV permit test in West Virginia is one of the more important steps when applying for this type of credential. The division administers its drivers permit test to check whether or not you have the theoretical knowledge of safe driving practices, road rules and traffic signalization.
Generally, this written exam will include 25 questions. To successfully pass the knowledge exam, you will be required to answer correctly at least 19 questions within a limited time period.
The best way to prepare for the WV learners permit test is studying through a driver’s handbook, since it covers all important topics in detail. Furthermore, if you take a drivers permit practice test, you can increase your chances of passing the exam even further. These West Virginia practice tests are designed to reflect the structure and types of questions of the official exam. The state DMV also offers a shorter sample driver’s test through its website.
West Virginia Driving Permit Rules and Restrictions
You will have to abide by certain driving permit rules in West Virginia when operating a vehicle with a learning license. For instance, you will be allowed to drive only if you are accompanied by a licensed driver who is 21 years of age or older seated next to you. You can also carry up to two additional non-family passengers. One of the more important learners permit rules prohibits you from operating a vehicle between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. as well.
When operating a motor vehicle with a WV learners permit, you will also have to abide by certain safety restrictions. For example, you are prohibited from using a mobile device at all times.
West Virginia Learner Permit Fees
Paying the West Virginia learner permit fee is the last step when applying for this learning credential.
If you are wondering how much does it cost to get your permit, check the following list:
- The GDL permit fee – $5
- Knowledge test – $7.50 per attempt
- Obtaining a REAL ID credential – additional $10
West Virginia Drivers Permit Forms
Note: DMV forms change regularly. The forms provided above are current based on the date of writing.
- Drivers Licenses and ID Cards from WV.gov