In Massachusetts, driver's education is required for new drivers under 18. This consists of 30 hours of classroom instruction, 12 hours of actual behind-the-wheel driving, and 6 hours of back-seat observation. Parents are also required to attend a separate 2-hour parent class.

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles regulations allow students to start classroom instruction at 15 years and 9 months. However, for actual behind-the-wheel instruction and in-car student observation, students must be at least 16 years old and have a valid learner's permit.


  • Your permit is valid for two years and allows you to practice your driving skills while preparing for your road test.
  • You must carry your permit whenever you drive until you earn a Junior Operator's License or a full driver's license.
  • You must always be accompanied by a licensed operator who occupies the passenger seat next to you. This person must be at least 21 years old, have a valid license, and have at least one year of driving experience.
  • If you are under 18, you may not drive between 12 AM and 5 AM unless accompanied by a licensed parent or legal guardian.
  • A class D learner's permit allows you to operate a motor vehicle in another state as long as it does not violate the laws of that state.
  • You may only operate a passenger car.
  • The law requires that you be at least 16 1/2 to obtain a Junior Operator's License. You must obtain your Learner's Permit at age 16, complete a driver's education course, and drive for six months without any surchargeable incidents or motor vehicle offenses before you are eligible to apply for a Junior Operator's License at age 16 1/2.


  • Complete a Massachusetts-approved driver education class.
  • Accumulate 12 hours of behind-the-wheel driving experience and 6 hours of in-car observation.
  • Hold a valid learner's permit for at least six months.
  • Receive no moving traffic violations resulting in a conviction for the six months before the date of application for the JOL.
  • Successfully pass a road test exam.
  • Pay the required fees directly to the RMV.

If you want additional information, check out the RMV's Junior Operator License requirements page.