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Traffic Laws for Teens

Traffic Laws for Teens

Learning to drive is often an exciting experience for teenagers. It can also be a stressful time for parents and other family members as having a driver's license comes with serious challenges and responsibilities. In addition to worrying about safety, teens and their families also have to be mindful of laws and regulations. In Ohio, teenagers are subject to some unique restrictions that do not apply to older drivers.


When can a young person legally start driving in Ohio? Well, beginning at the age of 15 years and 6 months, teens are eligible to apply for a Temporary Instruction Permit Identification Card (TIPIC), commonly referred to as “temps.” Before receiving their TIPIC, teenagers must pass a vision test and receive a score of over 75% on a 40-question multiple choice driving knowledge test. To help study, the Ohio BMV provides a Manual. Their website also includes a Sample Test to practice.

Teens with a TIPIC are not permitted to drive alone. They must be with a parent, guardian, or instructor until they reach the age of 16. After turning 16, they can be supervised by any passenger over the age of 21, except from midnight to 6am, which requires a parent, guardian, or other adult authorized by the BMV. Teens must keep their TIPIC documentation in their vehicle at all times while driving.

Before they can apply for a driver's license teenagers must have their TIPIC for 6 months. During that time, they must complete driver's education classes and spend 50 hours driving (including at least 10 hours at night).

Probationary Driver's License

After completing all of the necessary requirements above, teenagers are eligible to apply for their driver's license. To receive a license, applicants must pass two driving tests. The first test is for maneuverability. The second involves driving under the supervision of an instructor. If either result in failure, there is only a 2-day waiting period to try again.

Even after earning their license, drivers under the age of 18 are subject to certain probationary license restrictions for a period of time. For the first year, teenagers cannot drive with more than one non-family member in the vehicle. They are also not allowed to drive between the hours of midnight and 6am unless supervised or given specific permission by the BMV for school, work, or religious purposes. After a year of driving with a license, those restricted hours are reduced from 1am to 5am. 

A traffic violation within the first six months of having a license can result in a parent or guardian having to accompany the driver for 6 months or until the age of 17.

Fogt Law Office

Avoiding traffic violations can be difficult. This is true for experienced drivers, but even more so for teenagers who are just starting out. New drivers make mistakes, that is just part of the learning process. Unfortunately, however, those mistakes often involve legal consequences. Attorney Christopher Fogt has defended hundreds of drivers against traffic violations, achieving an impressive record of success. He has represented young drivers in cases involving everything from minor traffic tickets to aggravated vehicular homicide. No matter how serious the incident, protecting your driving record is imperative, especially for teenagers, who face additional legal scrutiny and have their entire lives ahead of them.

If you or a young person you care about was pulled over by police, you need to contact a skilled attorney. Contact our office today for a consultation.


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