illinois driver's license requirements

Illinois Driver’s License Requirements | Getting Your License In 2022

It might be difficult to read and understand the Illinois driver's license requirements. Don’t worry! We'll explain the entire process for you so you know exactly what to anticipate!

A valid driver’s license or permit is needed by law for all drivers in Illinois. It might be difficult to read and understand the Illinois driver’s license requirements.

Don’t worry — whether you’re a teenager or an adult wanting to acquire your driver’s license, we’ll explain the entire process for you so you know exactly what to anticipate!

How to get a driver’s license in Illinois?

illinois driver's license requirements

The following is a step-by-step guide to obtaining your driver’s license through the Illinois DMV. We’ve made the process of getting a license in Illinois as simple as possible for you to save time.

Instruction permit (ages 15-17)

If you’ve reached the age of 15, the instruction permit, commonly known as an Illinois learner’s permit, is the first step toward obtaining a driver’s license. The procedure may appear to be difficult, but it does not have to be.

  • To apply, you must be 15 years old or older
  • You must be enrolled in a driver’s education course or have recently finished one
  • Consent and financial responsibility must be signed by a parent or guardian
  • The written knowledge test must be passed
  • Before you may proceed, you must retain your permit for at least 9 months.

Initial Illinois driver’s license (ages 16-17)

The Illinois learner’s permit is a more limited version of the adult learner’s permit. Except for a certain curfew, it permits you to drive unsupervised. As you earn driving experience, it also restricts the amount of non-family members you may have in the vehicle with you.

Initial license requirements

  • Pass a state-approved driver’s education course
  • 50 hours of practice driving must be completed and verified
  • Pass the Driver’s License Exam in all three parts
  • A parent or guardian must sign a consent form and take financial responsibility before you may drive
  • Proof of identification, residence, and allowed presence may be submitted. A list of state-approved papers may be found here.

How to get your initial driver’s license?

Step 1: Practice for nine months under your permit before applying.

Before obtaining a driver’s license, young first-time drivers must meet specific requirements. A learner’s permit and/or driver’s education are required depending on your age.

If you’re between the ages of 16 and 17, you’ll need a learner’s permit. You must have parental approval and be enrolled in an approved driver education course. You must also pass a written and vision test after applying for a learner’s permit.

You must have had your learner’s permit for at least 9 months and have practiced driving for at least 50 hours, including 10 hours at night, under the supervision of a licensed adult 21 or older.

Step 2: Go to your local SOS office in Illinois. Depending on the location, you may need to make an appointment ahead of time.

Step 3: Make sure you have the required documents:

  • Your learner’s permit in Illinois
  • Identification that is acceptable
  • If you are under the age of 18, a parent or guardian must sign a consent form before you may get your first driver’s license. They reserve the power to remove your driving permit at any time since they are financially liable for what you do on the road
  • If appropriate, a cooperative driver testing certificate
  • A 50-hour driving log complete with signatures
  • On your driving record, you must also include a mark of successful completion of driver’s ed. Here you may check the status of your Illinois driving record.

Step 4: Be ready to pay the necessary costs.

Step 5: Pass a vision test

Step 6: Pass your Illinois drivers license test, unless you’re exempt owing to satisfying the cooperative driver testing program’s standards. Because this exemption is not guaranteed, you should bring a roadworthy car to the exam and brush up on your driving skills.

Step 7: Take a photo of yourself.

Step 8: Get a temporary paper driver’s license. In around 15 days, you’ll receive your official driver’s license in the mail.

What are the restrictions on the initial license?

illinois driver's license requirements

In Illinois, a first driver’s license allows you to drive alone, but there are still some requirements to follow. In general, you will not be permitted to operate a vehicle:

  • Between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. (Sunday-Thursday)
  • Between the hours of 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. (Friday-Saturday).

In addition, the number of persons you may carry is limited. You can only have one non-family member under the age of 20 in the vehicle for the first year or until you reach 18 (whichever comes first). After the time period has expired, you may carry one person under the age of 20 in the front seat and as many as there are seatbelts in the rear.

You cannot drive a commercial vehicle or a for-hire vehicle used to transfer property if you are under the age of 18 (like delivery vans and moving trucks). Neither does any other vehicle that requires a commercial driver’s license.

You cannot drive any vehicle for hire that transports more than 10 passengers if you are under the age of 21, such as a church bus or commuter van. If you hold an adult driver’s license, this also applies to you.

How to get your license at 18 in Illinois – Class D adult driver’s license 

If you’re over the age of 18, you can get your complete Illinois driver’s license right away. If you did not finish the graduated driver’s license program, you must still take a six-hour Adult Driver’s Ed course.

The training is optional for those above the age of 21, however, it is still strongly recommended.

Requirements for an adult driver’s license

  • Proof of identification, residence, and allowed presence must be submitted. A list of state-approved papers may be found here
  • Successfully complete the Illinois road test, written test, vision test.
  • Any other permits or licenses you have, including out-of-state ones, must be turned in
  • Have not been found to be mentally ill, alcoholic, or a regular user of illegal drugs by a court
  • If you’re between the ages of 18 and 20, you’ll need to take a six-hour state-approved Adult Driver Education Course if you:
  • You’re a first-time candidate
  • You’ve never had a driver’s license
  • You’ve never finished a state-approved driver’s education course.

The process for obtaining a full Illinois driver’s license

Visit your local SOS office in Illinois. Depending on the location, you may need to make an appointment ahead of time. Please bring the following documents:

  • Your IL instruction permit
  • Acceptable forms of identification
  • If you are under the age of 18, a parent or guardian must sign a consent form before you may get your first driver’s license. They reserve the power to remove your driving permit at any time since they are financially liable for what you do on the road
  • If appropriate, a cooperative driver testing certificate
  • A 50-hour driving log complete with signatures
  • On your driving record, you must also include a notation of successful completion of driver’s ed. Here you may check the status of your Illinois driving record.
  • Be ready to pay the necessary fees
  • Pass a vision test
  • Unless you are exempt owing to fulfillment of the cooperative driver testing program requirements, you must pass your driving exam
  • Because this exemption is not guaranteed, you should bring a roadworthy vehicle to the exam and brush up on your driving skills.
  • Take a driver’s license photo
  • Obtain a temporary paper driver’s license. In about 15 days, you’ll get your official Illinois driver’s license in the mail.

FAQs – Illinois driver’s license requirements

illinois driver's license requirements

At what age can you get your license in Illinois?

You must be at least 16 years old and have completed a driving education course, or you must be at least 18 years old.

In Illinois, how much does a driver’s license cost?

The charge for an Illinois driver’s license is $30 for anyone aged 21 to 68. Young individuals between the ages of 18 and 20 pay only $5. Seniors between the ages of 69 and 80 can get an Illinois driver’s license for $5, while those aged 87 and over can get one for free.

In Illinois, what is proof of residency?

To verify Illinois residence for a license, a variety of papers might be utilized. Bank statements, utility bills, official electronic statements, canceled checks (within the last 90 days), lease agreements, mortgage documents, homeowners’ or renters’ insurance policies, pay stubs, official government mail, certified school transcripts, and health insurance Statements of Benefits are all common examples.

To be considered a resident of Illinois, how long must you have lived there?

After one year of residence in Illinois, you are considered a resident. You are a resident for the purposes of obtaining a driver’s license if you have lived in Illinois for 90 days and intend to make it your home state.

Read more >>How To Transfer Driver’s License To Illinois?

How long does an Illinois driver’s license last?

Your driver’s license has a four-year validity period and will expire on your birthday. The license of drivers under the age of 21 expires three months after their 21st birthday. Drivers with license numbers 81 to 86 have a two-year validity period. The license must be renewed every year for drivers aged 87 and over.

That’s everything there is to know about Illinois driver’s license requirements, as well as how to obtain an Illinois initial and full driver’s license. If you need help preparing for your upcoming knowledge or driving exams, our materials are a great place to start. We have various free DMV practice tests and summarized study guides that may be very helpful.

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