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Traffic Laws

39:3-13.4 Probationary driver’s license.

4. a. The holder of a special learner’s permit shall be entitled to a probationary driver’s license (1) upon attaining the age of 17 years, (2) upon the satisfactory completion of an approved behind-the-wheel driver training course as indicated upon the face of the special permit over the signature of the principal of the school or the person operating the driving school in which the course was conducted, (3) upon the completion of six months’ driving experience with a validated special learner’s permit in compliance with the provisions of section 6 of P.L.1977, c.25 (C.39:3-13.2a), and (4) upon passing the road test pursuant to R.S.39:3-10.

b. The holder of a probationary license shall be permitted to operate the passenger automobile with only one additional passenger in the vehicle besides any dependent of the probationary license holder, except that this passenger restriction shall not apply when the holder of the probationary license is at least 21 years of age or the probationary license holder is accompanied by a parent or guardian. Further, the holder of the probationary license who is under 21 years of age shall not drive during the hours between 11:01 p.m. and 5 a.m.; provided however, that this condition may be waived for an emergency which, in the judgment of local police, is of sufficient severity and magnitude to substantially endanger the health, safety, welfare, or property of a person or for any bona fide employment or religion-related activity if the employer or appropriate religious authority provides written verification of such activity in a manner provided for by the chief administrator.

c. The holder of the probationary license shall not use any hand-held or hands-free interactive wireless communication device, except in an emergency, while operating a moving passenger automobile on a public road or highway. “Use” shall include, but not be limited to, talking or listening on any hand-held or hands-free interactive wireless communication device or operating its keys, buttons, or other controls. In addition, the holder of the probationary license shall ensure that all occupants of the vehicle are secured in a properly adjusted and fastened seat belt or child restraint system.

d. In addition to any other penalties provided under law, the holder of a probationary license who accumulates more than two motor vehicle points or is convicted of a violation of R.S.39:4-50; section 2 of P.L.1981, c.512 (C.39:4-50.4a); P.L.1992, c.189 (C.39:4-50.14); R.S.39:4-129; N.J.S.2C:11-5; subsection c. of N.J.S.2C:12-1; or any other motor vehicle law the chief administrator deems to be significant and applicable pursuant to regulation shall, for the first violation, be required to satisfactorily complete a remedial training course of not less than four hours which may be given by the commission, a driving school licensed by the chief administrator pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1951, c.216 (C.39:12-2), or any Statewide safety organization approved by the chief administrator. The course shall be administered pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the chief administrator and subject to oversight by the commission. The authority of the chief administrator to suspend, revoke, or deny issuance of an initial or renewal license to operate a driving school or an instructor’s license, and to assess fines, pursuant to P.L.1951, c.216 (C.39:12-1 et seq.) shall apply to any violations related to the administration of a remedial training course. The license holder shall also remit a course fee prior to the commencement of the course.

e. When notified by a court of competent jurisdiction that a probationary license holder has been convicted of a second or subsequent violation, in addition to any other penalties provided under law, the chief administrator shall, without the exercise of discretion or a hearing, suspend the probationary license for three months, and shall postpone eligibility for a basic license for an equivalent period. In addition, when the chief administrator is notified by a court of competent jurisdiction that a probationary license holder has been convicted of any alcohol or drug-related offense unrelated to the operation of a motor vehicle, and he is not otherwise subject to any other suspension penalty therefor, the chief administrator shall, without the exercise of discretion or a hearing, suspend the probationary license for six months.

f. The chief administrator shall provide the holder of a probationary license with two removable, transferable, highly visible, reflective decals indicating that the driver of the vehicle may be the holder of a probationary license. The decals shall be designed by the chief administrator, in consultation with the Division of Highway Traffic Safety in the Department of Law and Public Safety. The chief administrator may charge a fee for the decals not to exceed the actual cost of producing and distributing the decals. The decals shall be displayed in a manner prescribed by the chief administrator, in consultation with the Division of Highway Traffic Safety in the Department of Law and Public Safety, and shall be clearly visible to law enforcement officers. The holder of a probationary license shall not operate a vehicle unless the decals are displayed. The decal shall be removed once the driver’s probationary license period has ended.

g. A probationary license may be sent by mail and shall be clearly identifiable and distinguishable in appearance from a basic license by any name, mark, color, or device deemed appropriate by the chief administrator.

L.1950, c.127, s.4; amended 1951, c.7, s.2; 1977, c.25, s.8; 1998, c.108, s.7; 2001, c.420, s.8; 2009, c.37, s.3; 2009, c.38, s.9.

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