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How to Get a Learners Permit in Indiana

An Indiana learners permit is the means by which state residents can legally practice driving before applying for their first driver’s license. This permit for driving is not a driver’s license, and it requires that the holder be accompanied by a fully licensed driver whenever he or she is behind the wheel of a vehicle. Additionally, an Indiana DMV learners permit comes with various other restrictions, and certain eligibility requirements apply to interested motorists. In the sections below, find out the requirements for learners permit holders as well as the restrictions to which drivers must adhere as a novice driver.

Eligibility Requirements for Learners Permits in Indiana

A DMV drivers permit is available to residents who are at least 15 years of age and currently enrolled in a state-approved driver education course. Required driver education courses include 30 hours of instruction in either a classroom or online course, as well as six hours of training behind the wheel with a certified driving instructor. Getting a learners permit without having enrolled in or completed a driver education course is only possible if the applicant is 16 years of age or older.

How to Apply for a Learners Permitin Indiana

Regarding how to get a learners permit, motorists who meet the above eligibility requirements must follow certain application procedures. When applying for a learners permit, applicants will be required to verify their identity by providing the following:


  • Social Security Number
  • Proof of lawful presence in the U.S.
  • Two documents proving the establishment of Indiana residency
  • Documented proof of identity

Driving permit applicants who are unable to provide two original documents to prove in-state residency may submit an Indiana Residency Affidavit. This affidavit must be signed by an individual who is at least 18 years of age and resides in the same household as the Indiana learners permit applicant. The person signing the affidavit on behalf of the applicant must present a current drivers license or valid Indiana identification card, one additional document to prove his or her identity and two original documents proving in-state residency.

To get learners permit certification, applicants will be required to pass a vision screening test, as well as a knowledge examination. The knowledge examination contains IN learners permit questions regarding driving laws and proper practices. These examinations must be taken in person at a DMV office. No appointment is necessary, except in a case where the applicant must have the knowledge examination read aloud. Applicants must arrive at a branch office no later than one hour before closing to take the knowledge test. Regarding where to get learners permit certification, all required documents and examinations must be processed in person at a BMV office location. Learners permit online applications are not available.

Agreement of Financial Liability in Indiana

For learners permit applicants younger than 18 years of age, an agreement of financial liability be signed by an eligible party. Individuals qualifying to sign this agreement include:

  • A parent with legal custodial guardianship of the applicant.
  • A designated individual approved of and specified by the custodial parent.
  • A non-custodial parent of the applicant.
  • A designated individual approved of and specified by the non-custodial parent.
  • A non-parent guardian having legal custody of the applicant.

In cases where an approved DMV driving permit signer is not available, any other adult willing to assume the responsibility of financial liability may sign for the applicant. Any adult who signs this agreement on behalf of a minor IN learners license holder agrees to be jointly responsible for any damages caused by the permitted driver while operating a motor vehicle.

Indiana Learners Permit Rules and Restrictions

Drivers will receive a DMV drivers permit in Indiana after presenting all the required identification documents, passing the vision and knowledge exams and having an approved adult sign their agreement of financial liability. With a learners permit for driving in hand, they may begin to practice driving on a restricted basis. A driver younger than 16 years of age possessing a learners permit may only drive when he or she is accompanied by one of the following approved individuals:

  • A properly licensed driving instructor employed by a certified driver education facility
  • A driver in possession of a valid Indiana driver’s license, who is at least 25 years of age and related to the permit holder by blood, marriage or other legal status
  • A spouse of the permit holder who is at least 21 years of age and in possession of a valid Indiana driver’s license

Note: The approved licensed driver must sit in the front passenger seat of any vehicle that the permitted driver is operating.

The same learners permit rules apply to drivers between the ages of 16 and 18, with the exception that they need not be enrolled in a certified driving instruction course. Drivers 18 years of age and older who hold only a learners permit must still drive while accompanied by an approved licensed driver who is at least 25 years of age, or a properly licensed spouse who is 21 years of age or older. In any case, the driver operating a vehicle under the learners permit regulations must have an approved licensed driver sitting in the front passenger seat any time he or she is operating a vehicle.

Restrictions on learners permits may change depending on the results of the vision screening examination. Drivers operating vehicles with an Indiana learners permit are usually limited to driving only during daylight hours. In the case of an exceptional screening during the vision examination, this restriction may be lifted at the time of application.

Indiana DMV Learners Permit Renewal and Replacement

Should a learners permit expire before the permitted driver has obtained a legal drivers license, it can be renewed in person at an approved DMV branch office, by presenting the required identification. The same applies in cases of lost or stolen documentation. If your credential is lost or stolen, you can obtain a duplicate IN learners permit at a local DMV office.

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