These documents are currently being revised to incorporate the changes made during the 2024 Legislative Session. Please consult the Sections Affected Table for changes made during the 2024 Legislative Session.

46.20.049  <<  46.20.055 >>   46.20.065

Instruction permit.

(1) Driver's instruction permit. The department may issue a driver's instruction permit online or in person with or without a photograph to an applicant who has successfully passed all parts of the examination other than the driving test, provided the information required by RCW 46.20.091, paid an application fee of twenty-five dollars, and meets the following requirements:
(a) Is at least fifteen and one-half years of age; or
(b) Is at least fifteen years of age and:
(i) Has submitted a proper application; and
(ii) Is enrolled in a driver training education course offered as part of a traffic safety education program authorized by the office of the superintendent of public instruction and certified under chapter 28A.220 RCW or offered by a driver training school licensed and inspected by the department of licensing under chapter 46.82 RCW, that includes practice driving.
(2) Waiver of written examination for instruction permit. The department may waive the written examination, if, at the time of application, an applicant is enrolled in a driver training education course as defined in RCW 46.82.280 or 28A.220.020.
The department may require proof of registration in such a course as it deems necessary.
(3) Effect of instruction permit. A person holding a driver's instruction permit may drive a motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle, upon the public highways if:
(a) The person has immediate possession of the permit;
(b) The person is not using a wireless communications device, unless the person is using the device to report illegal activity, summon medical or other emergency help, or prevent injury to a person or property; and
(c) A driver training education course instructor who meets the qualifications of chapter 46.82 or 28A.220 RCW, or a licensed driver with at least five years of driving experience, occupies the seat beside the driver.
(4) Term of instruction permit. A driver's instruction permit is valid for one year from the date of issue.
(a) The department may issue one additional one-year permit.
(b) The department may issue a third driver's permit if it finds after an investigation that the permittee is diligently seeking to improve driving proficiency.
(c) A person applying for an additional instruction permit must submit the application to the department and pay an application fee of twenty-five dollars for each issuance.


Effective date2021 c 158 §§ 1, 3, and 4: "Sections 1, 3, and 4 of this act are necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and take effect immediately [May 3, 2021]." [ 2021 c 158 § 13.]
FindingIntent2021 c 158: See note following RCW 46.20.049.
FindingsIntentEffective date2017 c 197: See notes following RCW 28A.220.020.
Effective date2012 c 80 §§ 5-13: "Sections 5 through 13 of this act take effect October 1, 2012." [ 2012 c 80 § 14.]
Effective date2006 c 219: See note following RCW 46.82.285.
Effective date2005 c 314 §§ 101-107, 109, 303-309, and 401: See note following RCW 46.68.290.
Part headings not law2005 c 314: See note following RCW 46.68.035.
Effective dates2002 c 352: See note following RCW 46.09.410.
Intent1999 c 6: See note following RCW 46.04.168.
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