Saving Teenage Lives

Appendix A

Graduated Driver Licensing Model Law

Section 1­Purpose 1

The legislature has recognized the need to develop a graduated licensing system in light of the disproportionately high incidence of motor vehicle crashes involving youthful motorists. This system will improve highway safety by progressively developing and improving the skills of younger drivers in the safest possible environment, thereby reducing the number of vehicle crashes.2

Section 2­Minimum Age Requirements

The department3 may not issue a license or permit to any person under the age of 18 years, except that it may issue a driver's license to any person who is 164 or 17 years old who presents evidence of having satisfactorily completed the requirements of sections three and four.

Section 3­Learner's Permit, Intermediate License and Driver's License Application 5

The Department shall not grant the application for a learner's permit, intermediate license or driver's license to anyone 16 or 17 years old unless such application is both signed by the applicant and the applicant's parent or guardian, and the applicant has satisfactorily completed the requirements provided in Section 4 of this law.

Section 4­Limitations on the issuance of licenses and permits

Learner's permits and licenses shall be issued pursuant to the following conditions and requirements:

(a) Learner's Permit.

A learner's permit authorizes the permit holder to drive a specified type or class of motor vehicle under the conditions set forth in this section while in possession of the permit and accompanied by a parent, guardian, or other person 21 years or older, who is a licensed driver in accordance with the requirements set forth in this law.

(i) An applicant for a learner's permit shall have:
1. Passed a vision test;
2. Passed a written test administered by the Department;
3. Paid a fee for a learner's permit of (X) dollars.

(ii) A learner's permit requires supervised driving at all times. The supervisor shall be a parent, guardian or other adult age 21 years of age or older, posses-sing a valid driver's license under the laws of this state. The supervisor shall be the only other occupant of the front passenger section of the vehicle.

(iii) The learner's permit licensee shall not place the vehicle in motion until every occupant of the vehicle has a seat belt properly fastened about his or her body.

(iv) Every holder of a learner's permit shall maintain a conviction-free driving6 record and shall not have violated state drug, zero blood alcohol tolerance7, seat belt or other driver-related safety laws8 of the state.

(v) The learner's permit shall be valid for a period of at least one year from the date of its issuance.

(vi) In the event a person who holds a learner's permit drives a motor vehicle in violation of law, the permit shall be suspended9, or revoked.10

(b) Intermediate License.

An intermediate license authorizes the holder to drive a specified type or class of motor vehicle under the conditions specified below (next page):

(i) An applicant for an intermediate license shall have:
1. Possessed a valid learner's permit for a period of not less than 6 months without any conviction of drug, zero blood alcohol tolerance11, seat belt, or other driver-related safety laws;12
2. Passed a road test administered by the department;
3. Passed a course of drivers education13 in accordance with standards established by the State Board of Education and the department14; and
4. Paid a fee for an intermediate license of (X) dollars.

(ii) An intermediate license allows unsupervised driving from [5 a.m.] to [10 p.m.]15 At all other times the intermediate licensee must be supervised. While being supervised, the intermediate licensee must be accompanied by a parent, guardian, or other person 21 years or older. The supervisor shall possess a valid driver's license under the laws of this state. The supervisor shall be the only other occupant of the front passenger section of the vehicle.

(iii) The intermediate licensee shall not place the vehicle in motion until every occupant of the vehicle has a seat belt properly fastened about his or her body.

(iv) To be eligible to apply for a driver's license, an intermediate licensee shall maintain a conviction-free driving16 record and shall not have violated any state drug, zero blood alcohol tolerance17, seat belt or safety law of any state for at least the period of six months immediately preceding the date of the application for the license.

(v) The intermediate license shall be valid for a period of at least one year from the date of its issuance.

(vi) In the event that an intermediate licensee drives a motor vehicle in violation of law, the intermediate license shall be suspended18 or revoked19,20

(c) Driver's License.21

The department may issue a driver's license to any person who has completed the requirements set forth in this law, or to anyone who has reached 18 years of age and has operated a motor vehicle without traffic violations, drug violations, zero tolerance alcohol violations or seat belt violations for a period of 6 months immediately preceding the date of the application for the license.22

Section 5­Distinctive Form of License or Permit

(a) The learner's permit shall be identified as a "learner's permit" and issued in a distinctive form as determined by the department.

(b) The intermediate license shall be identified as an "intermediate license" and issued in a distinctive form as determined by the department.

(c) Every license issued to a person under the age of 21 shall be in a distinctive form determined by the department so as to be readily identifiable as a license issued to someone less than 21 years of age.

Section 6­Conduct

An individual holding a learner's permit or license issued under this law may not drive, attempt to drive, or be in the actual control of a vehicle, in violation of any provision of law.

Section 7­Penalty

Any person knowingly violating any provision of this law shall be guilty of a Class [A] misdemeanor.

Notes from the NCUTLO Drafting Committee

(1) The Drafting Committee notes that a state may adapt this model graduated driver licensing system to apply to all novice drivers without regard to age. The Drafting Committee also encourages states to cross reference appropriate license suspension and revocation requirements to assure that violation of the provisions of this model may result in the immediate suspension or revocation of the driver's permit or license in accordance with due process and the licensing system of the state.

(2) This model also requires the driver to comply with the zero blood alcohol tolerance statute if under the age of 21 and state drug and seat belt laws regardless of age.

(3) Department refers to the department of motor vehicles. If administration of driver licensing is not vested in that department, the term department should be changed to the correct department or bureau of government.

(4) This model law assumes that a learner's permit may not be issued before the age of 16 - which the Drafting Committee recommends. If a state issues learner's permits to applicants less than 16 years of age, it should adjust the timetable incorporated into this model. In that event the drafting Committee recommends extension of the duration of the learner's permit and the time period the applicant must hold the learner's permit before application may be made for an intermediate license.

(5) The drafter should cross reference the section of the state's law governing application requirements.

(6) States have the option of defining "conviction-free driving" as the absence of serious moving violations; if a state exercises this option, it should also enumerate the violations which are not sufficiently serious to trigger immediate license suspension, but rather may be waived, possibly through a departmental administrative process providing additional education or counseling.

(7) The Uniform Vehicle Code defines zero blood alcohol tolerance as "the alcohol concentration in a person's blood or breath which is 0.02 or more based on the definition of blood and breath units." See Uniform Vehicle Code, Sec. 6-208.

(8) The state should enumerate the laws covered by the term "other driver-related safety laws" of the state.

(9) The temporary withdrawal by formal action of the department of a person's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle on the public highways, which temporary withdrawal shall be for a period specifically designated by the department. See Uniform Vehicle Code, Sec. 1-185.

(10) The termination by formal action of the department of a person's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle on the public highways, which terminated license or privilege shall not be subject to renewal or restoration except that an application for a new license may be presented and acted upon by the department after the expiration of the applicable period of time prescribed in this code. See Uniform Vehicle Code, Sec. 1-167. Also see Uniform Vehicle Code, Chapter 6, Article II-Cancellation, Suspension, or Revocation of licenses.

(11) The Uniform Vehicle Code defines zero blood alcohol tolerance as "the alcohol concentration in a person's blood or breath which is 0.02 or more based on the definition of blood and breath units." See Uniform Vehicle Code, Sec. 6-208.

(12) The state should enumerate the laws covered by the term "other driver-related safety laws" of the state.

(13) States without a driver education requirement should omit subsection 4(b)(i) 3 requiring applicants under the age of 18 to have completed a driver education program. Such states should consider requiring the applicant's parent or guardian to certify that the applicant has participated in a specified minimum number of hours of supervised driving

(14) All approved driver training and safety education courses and courses of driver instruction shall include at least six hours of actual driving experience. The Drafting Committee recommends serious consideration be given to a driving requirement substantially greater than six hours.

(15) If greater supervision of younger drivers with intermediate licenses is preferred, one option states might consider is to expand the period of supervised driving required for 16-year-olds.

(16) States have the option of defining "conviction-free driving" as the absence of serious moving violations; if a state exercises this option, it should also enumerate which violations are not sufficiently serious to trigger immediate license suspension, but rather may be waived, possibly through a departmental administrative process providing additional education or counseling.

(17) The Uniform Vehicle Code defines zero blood alcohol tolerance as "the alcohol concentration in a person's blood or breath which is 0.02 or more based on the definition of blood and breath units." See Uniform Code, Sec. 6-208.

(18) The temporary withdrawal by formal action of the department of a person's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle on the public highways, which temporary withdrawal shall be for a period specifically designated by the department. See Uniform Vehicle Code, Sec. 1-185.

(19) The termination by formal action of the department of a person's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle on the public highways, which terminated license or privilege shall not be subject to renewal or restoration except that an application for a new license may be presented and acted upon by the department after the expiration of the applicable period of time prescribed in this code. See Uniform Vehicle Code, Sec. 1-167. Also see Uniform Vehicle Code, Chapter 6, Article II-Cancellation, Suspension, or Revocation of licenses.

(20) As noted earlier, the state may stipulate moving violations which do not automatically trigger immediate suspension or revocation, but rather may be waived, possibly as a result of participation in departmental counseling or educational programs.

(21) Drafter should cross reference the appropriate traffic code sections setting forth the requirements for obtaining driver's license. These provisions should set forth the appropriate driver training, testing and administrative requirements for acquiring a driver's license.

(22) Drafter should cross reference the appropriate provisions regarding the driver training and testing requirements of the 18-year-old or nonresident licensed driver receiving a driver's license.