In order to legally drive on the roads of Alabama, anyone who lives in the state must have an Alabama driver’s license. There are two types of driver’s licenses in Alabama: a driver’s license, and a learner’s license, or permit. In order to get either, you must follow certain steps. Here is a simple guide to getting an Alabama driver’s permit or license:

Learner’s license

A learner’s license, or permit, is part of the Graduated Driver Licensing program in Alabama. This permit allows holders to drive under the supervision of a licensed driver who is at least 21 years old, and is sitting in the front seat next to you.

In most cases, the only citizens who must first have a learner’s license in Alabama are teens under the age of 18 who are still considered dependents. These are the specific age requirements for obtaining a learner’s permit:

  • A 15-year-old may obtain a learner’s permit if they are enrolled in a Driver’s Education or training program, and can successfully pass a written test administered by the Alabama DPS.

  • A 16-year-old may obtain a learner’s permit by successfully passing a written test administered by the Alabama DPS.

If a teen meets any of the following requirements, they do not need to obtain a learner’s license before obtaining a regular Alabama driver’s license:

  • At least 18 years old
  • At least 17 years old, and has held a valid driver’s license for six months
  • At least 16 years old, and is married and considered the head of household
  • Has been legally declared an adult by the state of Alabama

Items to bring

When you arrive at the Alabama DPS to take a driver’s license exam, you must bring certain documents with you. If you are 16 years old or older, you must bring the following items in order to apply for a driver’s permit in Alabama:

Two forms of identification, including one with a photograph. One must be one of the following items:

  • Certified U.S. birth certificate
  • U.S. passport
  • Alabama identification card
  • Certificate of naturalization or of citizenship
  • Resident alien card
  • Valid foreign passport with U.S immigration documentation
  • A social security card.
  • Proof of graduation or a school enrollment form.
  • A $5 testing fee and a $36.25 license fee.

If you are 15 years old, you must bring the following items in order to apply for a driver’s permit in Alabama:

  • A certified U.S. Birth Certificate
  • A social security card
  • Proof of school enrollment or graduation
  • A $5 testing fee, and a $36.25 license fee

Passing the exam

The driver’s permit test is made up of questions about the state-specific traffic laws, safe driving rules, and road signs. The Alabama Driver License Manual covers all the information that a student needs in order to pass the exam. In order to get extra practice, there is an online practice test available

Students will also be required to pass a vision screening at this time. Passing these steps will earn a student their Alabama driver’s permit.

This article originally appeared on as How to Get an Alabama Driver's Permit and was authored by Valerie Johnston.

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