Safety Tips for Parents and Laws for Young Teen Drivers
With tighter restrictions on teen drivers and
tougher penalties, we hope teen drivers and
ing ability and increases the risk of a crash. Be
a good role model: Don’t drink and drive, and
For the entire time a driver holds a learner’s permit,
For All Learner’s Permit and 16- and
their parents or guardians will understand the reinforce this message with your teens. he or she may not have any passengers except for 17-year-old licensed drivers
serious responsibilities that come with getting a either: They may NOT:
Connecticut driver’s license. • Teach Your Teen About Distracted Driving: • A licensed driving instructor giving instruction • Transport more passengers than the number of
Talking on the phone or with passengers, texting, and others accompanying that instructor. seatbelts in the vehicle.
dialing radio stations, unrestrained pets and other
Managing Your Teen’s Driving distracting activities in the car increase the
• One person who is providing instruction and is
at least 20 years old, has held a driver’s license
• Operate any vehicle that requires a public
passenger transportation permit or a vanpool
Experience risk of a serious crash. for four or more consecutive years and whose vehicle.
license has not been suspended during the four • Use a cell phone (even if it is hands-free) or
The DMV Commissioner’s Advisory Committee on • Vehicle Selection Matters: Avoid having your years prior to training. Parents or legal guardian other mobile electronic devices while driving.
Teen Safe Driving Wants Parents to Know: teen drive high performance vehicles or older may accompany the instructor. • Transport any passenger on a motorcycle for
model vehicles that lack improved safety tech- six months after the issuance of a motorcycle
• Crashes Kill Teens: Motor vehicle crashes
are the #1 cause of death for 15-19 year- For Newly Licensed 16- and 17- Year endorsement.
old teenagers. Most teen crashes occur dur- • Financial Liability: Make your teen aware of
the financial consequences of a crash or a cita- Old Drivers Drivers 16-and 17-years old and each of their pas-
sengers are required to wear a seat belt. If either the
ing the first two years of having their license. Curfew
The first six months are most dangerous for the tion, including higher family insurance rates and driver or the passenger fails to wear the seat belt,
liability for injuries or damage. 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. - unless the teen is traveling for
newly-licensed teen. Provide as much employment, school, religious activities, medical each could be cited for a seat belt violation and fined
supervised practice as you can during the necessity, or if the individual is an assigned driver $75.
licensing period. • Know Connecticut Teen Driving Laws: The
teen driving laws are explained in this brochure. in the Safe Ride Program.
• Brain Development: Research shows that the More information, including teens-talking-to- 48-Hour License Suspension for Cer-
portion of the brain that assesses risk and danger teens videos created as part of the DMV teen safe
driving video contest, can be found at
During the first six months the newly licensed tain Violations
does not fully develop until the mid 20’s. Teens 16- or 17-year-olds who commit certain moving
are risk-takers, lacking the experience, judgment ct.gov/teendriving. driver may not have any passengers in the vehicle
except for: violations will have their drivers’ licenses seized
and maturity to recognize many potentially haz- by a police officer and will be suspended for 48
ardous situations. • Get Involved: Be a role model. Establish your • A licensed driving instructor;
own household rules and consequences. Stick hours. In addition, the police officer is authorized to
OR remove the vehicle from the scene.
• Passenger Restrictions: Enforce at home state to them no matter the hassle you receive from • His or her parents or legal guardian, at least
your teens. Your determination could save their The driver’s license will be held for that 48-hour
laws on passenger restrictions. Crash risk goes one of whom holds a valid driver’s license; OR period. In order to regain possession of the license
up when teens drive with other teens in the car. lives. • One person who is at least 20 years old, has after the 48-hour period, the teen and his or her
This risk also increases with the number of held a driver’s license for four or more con- parent or legal guardian must go to the police depart-
passengers, whether siblings, family or friends, in For Learner’s Permit Holders secutive years and whose license has not been ment and sign a written statement acknowledging
the vehicle. Required Tests suspended during the four years preceding the the license has been returned.
1. Applicants need to pass a 25-question knowledge time of being transported. Parents or legal
• Restrict Night Driving: Fatal crashes are test to obtain a permit. guardian may accompany the instructor.
more likely to occur at night. Young drivers are 2. Applicants need to pass a road skills test to obtain During the second six months (months seven Driver Retraining
at higher risk for drowsy driving, which causes a license. through twelve) the only additional passengers Certain offenses will trigger participation in the
thousands of crashes each year. Enforce the state allowed in the vehicle are members of the driver’s driver retraining program. Anyone age 24 or young-
curfew. Training Requirements immediate family. er who commits two or more moving violations
New permit holders need at least 40 hours of behind- or suspension violations must complete the DMV-
• It’s the Law - Require Your Teen to Buckle the-wheel training before applying for their driver’s (Please Note: These passenger and curfew restrictions do certified driver retraining program. After completing
Up: Teens have the lowest rate of seatbelt use. license. not apply to active members of a volunteer fire company the operator retraining program, anyone becoming
The simplest way to prevent car crash deaths and New permit holders need to complete an eight-hour or department, a volunteer ambulance service or compa- a repeat offender within 36 months faces a license
serious injuries is to buckle up. safe driving course. Also, parents or legal guardians ny, or an emergency medical service organization who are suspension.
are required to complete a two-hour class with the responding to an emergency call or carrying out duties as
• No Drinking and Driving: Connecticut has permit holder concerning teen driving laws. an active member, or if the individual is an assigned driver
a Zero-Tolerance Law for teens drinking and in the Safe Ride Program.)
driving. Even one drink impairs a teen’s driv-
Safety Tips and Laws
Drinking and Driving Mandatory Suspensions for 16- and 17-Year-Old Drivers
Administrative Per Se Penalties
The administrative license suspension for a 16- or
That Parents and
17-year-old who drives under the influence of
alcohol will be at least one year if he or she had an The following explains the suspension violations for 16- and 17-year-old drivers. DMV will suspend the
elevated blood alcohol content equal to or over .02. driver’s license or learner’s permit of a 16- or 17-year-old for any conviction of violating a teen driving
Their 16 - Year Old
If the 16- or 17-year-old refuses to submit to the test, restriction, speeding, reckless driving, street racing or using a cell phone or text messaging device while
the suspension will be 18 months. This law applies driving.
to both public roads and private property.
17 - Drivers
Youthful Offender Status VIOLATION 1ST OFFENSE 2ND OFFENSE 3RD OFFENSE
Someone under 18 who commits the following can-
not be considered a youthful offender: Graduated Driver’s License 30-day license suspension, (For all 2nd and subsequent
• Negligent homicide with a motor vehicle. (GDL) violations under $175 license restoration fee, offenses)
• Evading responsibility following an accident §14-36g(a) including: court fines. 6-month license suspension
that results in a death or serious injury. Passenger restrictions; Driv- or until age 18, whichever is
• Driving under the influence of alcohol or ing curfew; Operating public longer; $175 license restoration
service vehicle or vanpool; fee, court fines.
drugs. More passengers than seat
belts; Carrying passengers ct.gov/teendriving
Any youth adjudicated as a youthful offender for the on a motorcycle less than six
following offenses shall have their records disclosed months after obtaining a
to DMV for the purposes of imposing a driver’s motorcycle endorsement;
• Reckless driving. USE OF CELL PHONE/ 30-day license suspension, 90-day license suspension, 6-month license suspension,
• Operating while under suspension. TEXT MESSAGING $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee,
• Evading responsibility following an accident §14-296aa court fines. court fines. court fines
involving property damage or physical injury.
• Street racing.
• Disregarding a police officer’s signal to stop. SPEEDING 60-day license suspension, 90-day license suspension, 6-month license suspension,
(more than 20 mph over speed $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee,
For more detailed information on the new driving limit) court fines. court fines. court fines.
laws, visit the DMV Center for Teen Safe Driving at §14-219
RECKLESS DRIVING 6-month license suspension, 1-year suspension, 1-year suspension,
§14-222 (a) $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee,
This brochure provided is supported by: court fines or imprisonment court fines or imprisonment court fines or imprisonment
of not more than 30 days, or of not more than one year, or of not more than one year, or
both. both. both.
STREET RACING 6-month suspension, 1-year suspension, 1-year suspension,
§14-224(c) $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee, $175 license restoration fee,
court fines or imprisonment court fines or imprisonment court fines or imprisonment
of not more than 1 year, or of not more than 1 year, or of not more than 1 year, or
both. both. both.
S T A T E O F C O N N E C T I C U T
Revised November 2011