This Step: Get a Drivers License
Get a Drivers License in Massachusetts
First-time drivers of any age must pass a road test to land a Massachusetts drivers license. Plus, you can only schedule a road test if you have a learner’s permit.
Make a Road Test Appointment at the MD MVA
You must schedule an appointment to take a road test with an RMV examiner. You can either call or go online to book a road test appointment. Those who are eligible to schedule online can also pay the required fees online with a credit card, and avoid making a trip back to an RMV branch office after you pass.
Teens Between 16 ½ and 18 years old
Before you can schedule a road test, you must complete drivers ed, pass a final exam and have a drivers education certificate electronically on file with the RMV from a Registrar-approved high school program or licensed driving school. You must also have a clean driver record for the six-month period immediately preceding the date you apply for the test.
Find Your Local RMV Office
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B) Gather Required Documents and Massachusetts License Fees
Be prepared to provide the following on test day:
- A completed road test application; if you are younger than 18 your parent or guardian must fill out the parental consent section
- Your current Massachusetts learner’s permit
- A qualified sponsor* (see the Sponsor Requirements section of the Massachusetts Driver’s Manual for more)
- An acceptable, properly equipped and legally registered vehicle for your road test* (see the Passenger Vehicle Requirements section of the manual above)
- Proper fees
*If you went the route of a licensed driver training school, you can use a school vehicle for your road test and a school instructor as your test sponsor. Otherwise, an examiner will inspect the vehicle you provide for the road test to ensure it is safe, clean, properly registered and in good working order.
B) Take the Road Test
With your required documents and fees in hand, head to your appointment five minutes early. If you are late, the state will not administer the test to you and will still charge you the road test fees.
Road Test Retakes
If you don’t pass the road test, you have the option to retest. You can try six time within a 12-month period.
Get Your Massachusetts Driver's License
Prepaid Drivers License
For those who prepaid for their license, the examiner will stamp the back of your learner’s permit once you pass the road test. This is now your temporary license, valid for 30 days. You’ll receive your permanent photo-image license in the mail.
Paid in Person
If you did not prepay for your license, you must return to an RMV branch with your permit and road test results within 30 days. Then you’ll pay for and receive a temporary license while the state manufactures your permanent license. Then the state will mail you your photo-image license.
Junior Operator License
Teens younger than 18 will earn a Junior Operator License (JOL). This comes with the following restrictions:
- No driving with a passenger younger than 18 within the first six months, unless this person is an immediate family member or you are accompanied by a licensed driver sitting the passenger seat next to you who is at least 21 years old, holds a valid Massachusetts drivers license (or another state) and has at least one year of driving experience
- No driving between midnight and 5 a.m.. unless you are accompanied by a parent or legal guardian
- No driving a vehicle that requires a commercial drivers license (CDL)
- No using a cell phone while driving unless you are reporting an emergency
After the first six months (or until you turn 18, whichever comes first), the state will lift your passenger restrictions if no license suspensions push things back. See the MA Driver’s Manual for more on penalties and suspension periods that could hold you back from graduating to a full drivers license.
Full Drivers License
Applicants older than 18 will receive a full license with no passenger restrictions.