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What restrictions are on a NJ probationary license or GDL?

A New Jersey probationary license, also called a Graduated Driver License (GDL), is a restricted license issued to those learning to drive for the first time (usually teenagers) and has certain restrictions that must be observed, depending on the age of the teen when he or she applies for it.  As of May 10, 2010, they are:

Student Learner's Permit (Obtained at 16)

  • Display a reflectorized decal on each license plate (front/back)
  • No driving after 11:01 p.m. and before 5:00 a.m.
  • You must be accompanied in the front seat by an adult supervising driver who is at least 21 years of age and who possesses a valid New Jersey driver license and has a minimum of three years driving experience.
  • Parent(s), guardian(s) or dependant(s) are allowed as passengers. A dependant is a permit or probationary driver's child, not siblings.
  • Only one additional passenger is allowed unless accompanied by a parent or guardian.
  • You can't use cell phones, hand held video games or any other hands-free interactive, wireless communication device.
  • Seat belts must be worn at all times
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Probationary License (Must be 17)

  • Display a reflectorized decal on each license plate (front/back);
  • No driving after 11:01 p.m. and before 5:00 a.m.
  • Parent(s), guardian(s) or dependant(s) are allowed as passengers. A dependant is a permit or probationary driver's child, not siblings.
  • Only one additional passenger is allowed unless accompanied by a parent or guardian.
  • You can't use cell phones, hand held video games or any other hands-free interactive, wireless communication device.
  • Seat belts must be worn at all times.

Each level has restrictions that must be adhered to by the license holder, and failure to do so carries consequences.  However, upon completion of all the steps in the program, drivers are awarded an unrestricted basic driver license.

What if you get a ticket?

Anyone holding a probationary license must be very careful, as traffic violations can have increased consequences, not the least of which is the inability to eliminate points by pleading to "Unsafe Operation."

If you have received a ticket in Camden, Gloucester, or Salem County while holding a GDL, call my office at 856-432-4113 or contact me through this site to discuss your options.  You don't want to end up losing the license you just got!

Want to Avoid Getting One?

If you hold a GDL, or are the parent of someone who does, and would like further information on New Jersey's traffic laws in order to avoid getting a ticket that carries points, download my free book, A Guide to Driving Legally in New Jersey and Surviving Traffic Court If You Don't.  

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Steven J. Richardson
Bankruptcy, Collections, Student Loan, DUI and Traffic Court attorney in Woodbury, NJ.