Maryland Permit and Driver's License FAQ

  • Applying for Your MD License
  • Preparing for the MD Permit Test
  • Taking the MD Permit Test
  • Preparing for the MD Driving Test
  • Taking the MD Driving Test
  • Renewing Your MD License
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Applying for Your MD License: Frequently Asked Questions

What are the age requirements for getting started?

Maryland requires teen drivers to complete a Graduated Licensing System, which is also called the “rookie driver program” in order to receive their full, unrestricted driver’s license. The program is designed to help teens acquire safe, responsible driving skills while minimizing the risk to other drivers while they practice.

The program has three age requirements:

  • 15 years, 9 months old – Learner’s Permit
  • 16 ½ years old – Provisional Driver’s License
  • Once GDS requirements all satisfied – Full, Unrestricted Driver’s License

What documents am I required to bring with me when applying for a license in Kansas?

  • Proof of age
  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of Maryland residence
  • Social Security Card, W-2 or Pay Stub
  • Signed Form DL-300 (Verification of Identity and/or School Attendance)
  • Permission Form Signed by Parent
  • $50 payment for fees

For a list of documents acceptable to submit for proof of identification, age, residency and more, visit the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration website.

Where do I file my MD driver’s license application?

At a local Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) office.

How can I contact my local office?

Call 410-768-7000 or 1-800-492-4575 (TTY). You can also visit https://www.mva.maryland.gov/locations/.

Do I have to take a Driver’s Ed Course?

Yes, new drivers, regardless of age, are required to complete driver’s education to receive their driver’s license from the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration.

What if I am new to Maryland?

Teens moving to Maryland are required to participate in the GDS. Your age and out-of-state driver’s license status will determine where you start in the GLS. Go to the local MVA office to learn more.

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Preparing for the MD Permit Test: Frequently Asked Questions

What subjects are commonly covered on the written test?

On the Maryland written knowledge test you will find questions covering state traffic laws, road signs and safe driving practices. Here are a couple of examples of information drawn from your state driver’s manual that you may need to know on the test:

  • A minimum following distance of 3 to 4 seconds is recommended under ideal driving conditions
  • When driving, you must turn on your headlights anytime there is not enough light to clearly see at least 1,000 feet ahead of your vehicle.

How is the test formatted?

The test is multiple choice.

Are there a lot of “trick” questions on the written test?

No, questions on the test are drawn directly from the Maryland Driver’s Manual. Study this book and you should have a firm understanding of the content needed to pass the test. When studying the manual be sure to pay attention to numeric information, such as distances, lengths, measurements and speed limits as these are often found on the exam.

How many questions are on the test and how many do I need to answer correctly to pass?

There are 20 questions on the Maryland Permit Test and you must answer at least 17 of the questions correctly in order to pass.

What are the best ways to prepare for the written test?

Read your Maryland Driver’s Manual at least three times and be sure to study the content thoroughly, including statistics, measurements, distances and other numeric information. You should also take online practice tests to better assess your knowledge level and identify areas that you may need to study more. Take a practice test now.

Where can I get a free Maryland Driver’s Manual to study?

This website offers free copies of the manual.

How can I improve my odds for passing the first time I take the test?

Rest assured the content you need to know to pass the test can all be found in the Maryland Driver’s Manual. Study this manual as much as possible. The MVA also offers an online tutorial for teen drivers on its website. Another great thing to do to increase your chances of passing is to take online practice tests that are formatted like the real state test. Take a practice test now.

What should I do the night before the test?

You’ll want to review the Maryland Driver’s Manual as well as take an online practice test or two to further refresh your memory. Then be sure to get a good night’s sleep. What you don’t want to do is stay up all night “cramming.” Get your studying in advance and the night before the test will be much less stressful. On test day, be sure to arrive at the testing facility early so you can stay relaxed and focused on the task at hand.

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Taking the MD Permit Test: Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to make an appointment to take the written test?

If possible, it is recommended that you make an appointment.

Where do I take the written test?

You will take the test at a nearby office of the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA).

What do I need to bring when I sit for the written test?

  • Proof of age
  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of Maryland residence
  • Social Security Card, W-2 or Pay Stub
  • Signed Form DL-300 (Verification of Identity and/or School Attendance)
  • Permission Form Signed by Parent
  • $50 payment for fees

For a list of documents acceptable to submit for proof of identification, age, residency and more, visit the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration website.

Who should accompany me to the written test?

A parent or legal guardian should accompany you to the test.

Do I need to pay a fee to take the written test?

Yes, you will need to pay a total of $50 in fees.

What should I expect when I sit for the written test?

The test, which consists of 20 questions, is presented in an automated format with an allotted completion time. You can miss up to three questions and still pass. If you come across a difficult question, it is advised that you skip the question and come back to it at the end of the test. Depending on how many other questions you get right you may not even have to answer that difficult question. We offer practice tests formatted like the real Maryland test here on our website.

What happens after I pass the written test?

You will receive your Learner’s Permit and can begin behind-the-wheel driving practice. You need to log 60 total hours of practice driving with 10 of those hours coming at night to qualify for a provisional license.

What happens if I fail the written test?

You can retake the test.

How soon can I retake the written test?

You can retake it as soon as the next business day.

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Preparing for the MD Driving Test: Frequently Asked Questions

I’ve passed the written permit test, what are the next steps?

You must now log 60 hours of driving practice, including 10 hours of driving at night, to qualify for your provisional license.

How long after getting my Learner’s Permit can I apply for a license?

You must hold your learner’s permit for at least nine months. You also must be at least 16 1/2 years old and have successfully completed driver’s ed.

Can I drive anywhere in Maryland with my Learner’s Permit?

Yes, as long as you are accompanied by a licensed driver age 21 or older who has had their license for at least years, you can drive on any Maryland public road or street.

Should I practice driving solely during the day?

No, you will also need to log at least 10 hours of driving at night to satisfy your 60-hours of practice driving requirement.

Does anyone have to be in the car with me when I’m driving with my Learner’s Permit?

An adult age 21 or over who has had their license for at least three years must be sitting in the front passenger seat when you are driving.

What should I do if I have a lost Maryland Learner’s Permit?

Go to your local MVA office to request a replacement. You will need to bring identification documents and pay a $20 replacement fee.

How can I be sure I’m prepared to ace the driving test?

Practice both common vehicle maneuvers like turns, stops and parking along with the defensive driving techniques that are vital to driving safely in traffic. If you master both of these things you will be well prepared to pass the driving test.

Are there particular driving maneuvers I should practice?

You should practice steering smoothly, accelerating smoothly, coming to a full stop, obeying the speed limit, following at a safe distance, observing your surroundings, signaling and more.

How can I simulate the driving test?

Practice both maneuvers that are commonly tested for on the exam, such as turns, parking, accelerating, braking and driving defensively. Also, practice driving in traffic where you must react to your surroundings and follow various road signs and signals. These two things should give you a solid foundation to pass the test.

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Taking the MD Driving Test: Frequently Asked Questions

How do I schedule my driving test?

Contact your local office of the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA).

Where do I take the driving test?

At an MVA office.

What should I bring to the driving test?

  • Your Learner’s Permit
  • A completed practice driving log (Form RD-006)
  • A vehicle to drive
  • Registration for that vehicle
  • Proof of insurance

Who should bring me to the driving test?

A licensed parent or legal guardian should bring you.

What will I be asked to do on the driving test?

To pass the driving test you will need to perform a series of maneuvers, which may include parking, turning, stopping and accelerating. You will also need to drive in traffic and display proper defensive driving skills as well as good observational skills.

What are the most common reasons new drivers fail the driving test?

Often drivers fail the driving test because they are not as observant as they should be behind the wheel. They fail to notice a road sign or a speed limit or a car changing lanes in front of them. Be sure to pay attention to your surroundings and to give yourself enough distance to respond to what the driver in front of you does.

What are five mistakes I should be sure to avoid when taking the driving test?

  • Not braking smoothly
  • Not steering smoothly or not keeping the right hand position on the wheel
  • Going over the line at an intersection
  • Not minding the speed limit even if there is no sign
  • Not following the examiner’s instructions

What happens if I fail the driving test?

You can retake the test.

How soon can I retake the test if I failed?

You can retake the test the next business day.

I’ve passed the road test, now what?

You will receive your provisional license.

What restrictions come with a Maryland license?

If under 18, you can drive with supervision from 5 a.m. to midnight. You can drive from midnight to 5 a.m. when supervised by a driver who is at least 21 and has had their license for three years or when driving to/from work, school, volunteer program or sports event or practice you are participating in.

Also, for the first 151 days that you have your provisional license, you cannot drive with any passengers under 18 unless you are accompanied by a supervising driver or they are immediate family members.

What are the insurance requirements for drivers in MD?

Maryland requires all drivers to carry at a minimum the following insurance coverage: Bodily Injury Liability Coverage: $30,000 minimum per person / $60,000 minimum per accident; Property Damage Liability Coverage: $15,000 minimum; Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage: $30,000 minimum per person / $60,000 minimum per accident; Uninsured Motorist Property Damage Coverage: $15,000 minimum; and Personal Injury Protection: $2,500 minimum.

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Renewing Your MD License: Frequently Asked Questions

What if I need to renew my license or replace a lost/stolen license?

If you are over 21 years of age, your Maryland driver’s license will typically be valid for a period of 8 years, though in some circumstances it could be valid for a period of time between 5 years and 8 years. When it is time to renew your license you will receive a letter from the MVA with directions on how to proceed.

If you have a lost or stolen license, you must go to your local MVA office to request a replacement. You will need to bring identification documents and pay a $20 replacement fee.

Where can I renew my Maryland driver’s license?

Your renewal notice will indicated whether you can renew online, by mail, at an MVA self-service kiosk or in person at an MVA office.

Will I be required to take a vision test when renewing my license?

If you are 40 years or older you will need to take a vision test or have an a MVA-certified eye care provider send in your vision your report to the MVA.

To qualify for a driver’s license, you must have visual acuity of at least 20/40 in each, binocular vision and a continuous field of vision of at least 140 degrees.

If corrective lenses are needed to meet the above standards, a restriction will be included on your license requiring that corrective lenses be worn while driving.


The Maryland MVA Test — What You Need to Know

Think you’re ready to get your Maryland learner’s permit?  Before the state of Maryland can issue you a learners permit, you’ll need to first pass the permit test.  The permit test is a multiple-choice written test administered by Maryland’s Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA).   You will be tested on your knowledge of various road signs, safe driving practices, and state-specific traffic laws.

Pass the Permit Test With MD MVA Practice Tests

It can be a horrible feeling to fail any test but failing the permit test means your dreams of driving are postponed.  A failed test means not only having to wait to try again but in some cases, you may be required to pay a retesting fee.  Who has time for that?

No need to worry.  We’re in your corner and here to help.

Here you’ll find some of the best study resources available. You’ll get access to our Maryland practice permit test,  a copy of the official Maryland Drivers Handbook, and additional resources if you want to get your motorcycle permit as well.  No matter what test you are preparing for we have all the tools available here in one convenient place.