WA Driver Ed Rules & Resources
Steps to getting your first license: Teens 15-17 years old
To get your driver license, you must:
- Be at least 16 years old.
- Be a Washington resident (your license will show this address).
- Successfully complete an approved driver training course.
- Online and parent taught traffic safety education are not approved courses in Washington State. If your teen completes a course in another state, it must meet Washington State minimum requirements.
- Have your Washington State instruction permit for at least 6 months.
- Not have been convicted of any traffic violations within 6 months of applying for the license.
- Not have been convicted of any alcohol or drug offense while holding an instruction permit.
How to get your license
- Get an instruction permit.
- Complete at least 50 hours of driving practice (including 10 hours at night) with someone who's been licensed for 5 years or more.
- Resources for the person who supervises the driving practice:
- Pass the driving test at any driver training and testing location.
- Decide if you would like to register as an organ, eye, and tissue donor. Visit LifeCenter Northwest for more information.
- Get your license:
- At a driver licensing office location. You'll need to:
- Show you've passed a traffic safety course.
- If your driver training school didn't submit an electronic course completion for you, bring the signed certificate they gave you.
- If you don't have your certificate and the school has closed, email us at email@example.com or call 360.664.6692.
- Bring a parent with you to the licensing office to sign the parental authorization form.
- If you can't bring a parent, have them fill out the Parental Authorization Affidavit form and have it notarized. You must bring the notarized form with you to the office.
- Show proof of identity.
- Provide your Social Security number, or sign a declaration if you don't have one.
- Pass a vision screening.
- Have your photo taken, if necessary.
- Pay the fees.
Intermediate license laws for teen drivers
If you're under 18, you'll be issued an intermediate driver license and must follow these laws:
- Driving with Passengers
- First 6 months: No passengers under 20 years old, except for immediate family members (spouse, child, stepchild, or siblings, both by birth and marriage).
- Next 6 months: No more than 3 passengers under 20 years old who aren't members of your immediate family.
- Nighttime driving
For the first 12 months, you can't drive between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. unless you're with a licensed driver 25 years or older. The only exceptions are driving for agricultural purposes and transporting farm products or supplies under the direction of a farmer as described in RCW 46.20.070.
- No cell phones
You aren't permitted to use wireless devices while driving, even with a hands-free device. This includes talking on cell phones and sending or receiving text messages. You may only use a wireless device to report an emergency.
These restrictions won't apply after you turn 18 years old.