This calculator uses Institute research to show how changes to state provisions might affect collision claims and fatal crash rates among young drivers. For every state and D.C., the Institute has estimated the effects of strengthening or weakening five key graduated driver licensing provisions: permit age, practice driving hours, license age and night driving and passenger restrictions. The projections are based on research showing what matters most when it comes to preventing fatal crashes and collision claims among teen drivers.

Best GDL provisions by state as of December 2014

Permit age of 16:

  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • D.C.
  • Kentucky
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Massachusetts
  • Rhode Island

70 supervised practice hours:

  • Maine

Licensing age of 17:

  • New Jersey

8 p.m. night driving restriction:

  • Idaho (sunset to sunrise)
  • South Carolina (6 p.m. EST)

No teen passengers:

  • Alaska
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • D.C.
  • Georgia
  • Indiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Nevada
  • Oregon
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Washington
  • West Virginia

Background research

Graduated driver licensing laws and insurance collision claims frequencies of teenage drivers

Graduated licensing laws and fatal crashes of teenage drivers: a national study

Find out more about calculator methodology.

Overall

Overall estimates are based on the combination of
the individual GDL component effects shown below.

Fatal
Crashes
Collision
Claims

Permit age

16 years
  1. 14 years
  2. 14 years 3 months
  3. 14 years 6 months
  4. 14 years 9 months
  5. 15 years
  6. 15 years 3 months
  7. 15 years 6 months
  8. 15 years 9 months
  9. 16 years
Fatal
Crashes
Collision
Claims

The first step to becoming a licensed driver is a learner permit. In this stage, teens can only drive with adult supervision. States can reduce teens’ fatal crashes by raising the minimum permit age.

Minimum permit age ranges from 14 years to 16 years across the United States.

Practice hours

65 hours
  1. 0 hours
  2. 5 hours
  3. 10 hours
  4. 15 hours
  5. 20 hours
  6. 25 hours
  7. 30 hours
  8. 35 hours
  9. 40 hours
  10. 45 hours
  11. 50 hours
  12. 55 hours
  13. 60 hours
  14. 65 hours
  15. 70 hours
Fatal
Crashes
Collision
Claims

Most states require a minimum number of supervised hours behind the wheel before progressing from the learner stage to an intermediate license. Requiring more practice hours reduces the number of collision claims filed for novice drivers.

Across the United States, required practice amounts range from 0 hours to 70 hours.

License age

16 years 6 months
  1. 14 years 3 months
  2. 14 years 6 months
  3. 14 years 9 months
  4. 15 years
  5. 15 years 3 months
  6. 15 years 6 months
  7. 15 years 9 months
  8. 16 years
  9. 16 years 3 months
  10. 16 years 6 months
  11. 16 years 9 months
  12. 17 years
Fatal
Crashes
Collision
Claims

The older teens are when they first become eligible for a license, the fewer fatal crashes there are. Increasing this minimum age is a proven way to reduce crashes and deaths among young drivers.

Minimum license age ranges from 14 years 3 months to 17 years across the United States.

Night driving

11:00 pm
  1. No restriction
  2. 1:00 am
  3. 12:30 am
  4. midnight
  5. 11:30 pm
  6. 11:00 pm
  7. 10:30 pm
  8. 10:00 pm
  9. 9:30 pm
  10. 9:00 pm
  11. 8:30 pm
  12. 8:00 pm
Fatal
Crashes
Collision
Claims

Most states restrict teens in the intermediate stage of licensure from driving without adult supervision at night. Starting times vary. Restrictions that start at 9 p.m. reduce teen driver fatal crash rates an estimated 18 percent and collision claim frequencies an estimated 8 percent, compared with no restriction.

Night driving start times range from 1 a.m. to 8 p.m. Restrictions in some states vary by the time of year.

Passengers

One
  1. Two or more
  2. One
  3. None
Fatal
Crashes
Collision
Claims

When a beginning driver travels with other teens in the car, the risk of a fatal crash increases. Most states limit the number of passengers that may ride along with intermediate-stage drivers without adult supervision. When teen passengers are prohibited, 15-to-17-year-old drivers’ fatal crash rates are 21 percent lower than when two or more are allowed. Allowing only one teen passenger reduces the rate 7 percent.