Missouri's Teen Driver's License Laws: What Every Teen and Parent Need to Know

Teen Driver car accident lawyer

Missouri has a graduated driver’s license law under which all first-time drivers less than 18 years of age can get a learner’s permit and drive with a licensed driver. They will then be issued an intermediate license before they can obtain a full driver’s license.

The multi-stage licensing process is intended to teenagers acclimated with driving situations before they attempt to drive on their own.

Any teenager in the state is allowed to apply for an instruction permit when they are 15, but they will have to pass vision, road sign recognition, and written tests at a Missouri State Highway Patrol driver examination station.

A qualified individual must accompany the teenager to the license office to sign a permission statement. A qualified person is defined as a parent, legal guardian, or a certified trainer with a federal residential job training program with a valid driver’s license.

Missouri Learner’s Permit Laws and Regulations

A teenager can obtain an instruction permit at 15 years of age. The instruction permit will allow the teen driver to be accompanied in the front seat by a licensed driver.

A person needs to have an instruction permit for 182 days before they can graduate to an intermediate license. To be issued an intermediate license, a teenager will need to be accompanied to the license office by a qualified person to verify the teenager has received 40 hours of driving instruction that includes at least 10 hours of nighttime driving instruction.

Obtaining a Teen Driver’s License in Missouri

During the first six months, a teen driver with an intermediate license cannot operate a motor vehicle with more than one passenger who is under 19 years of age and who is not a member of their immediate family. They also cannot drive alone from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. except to and from a school activity, job, or for an emergency, unless they are accompanied by a licensed driver 21 years of age or older.

Teenage drivers can apply for an under 21 driver’s license when they turn 18 or within 30 days preceding their 18th birthday. A teen driver must have no alcohol-related offenses or traffic convictions within the last 12 months to receive a full license.

Safety Tips for New Teen Drivers in Missouri

Parents have a responsibility to teach their teens to respect the rules of the road and exercise caution to keep themselves and others safe. Some common safety tips that parents can pass along to their teenage drivers include:

  • Always obey the rules of the road. Speed limits, stop signs, and traffic signals exist for your safety and the safety of others.
  • Exercise caution at all times when behind the wheel. Driving aggressively or carelessly is a recipe for disaster.
  • Put away your phone while driving. Texting, using social media, talking, or other activities on your phone can wait.
  • Never drive while drunk or under the influence of drugs. Driving while intoxicated could result in an arrest and DWI conviction, or worse, a severe or fatal crash.

Contact a Missouri Car Accident Lawyer

The St. Louis car accident lawyers of Sansone & Lauber represent people who’ve been injured in accidents caused by the recklessness or carelessness of others. We refuse to let car accident victims suffer physically and financially in the aftermath of a crash that was not their fault.

When you need qualified legal assistance, call us to speak to a compassionate member of our team.