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19-apr-2011

Louisiana Drivers Test

Louisiana Driving Test

Every first time license applicant in Louisiana must take a Louisiana driving test before a license can be issued. The drivers test was designed to assess your ability to control the vehicle and to observe driving rules at the same time. Those who wish to take a Louisiana driver's test prior to their 17th birthday must follow the state's graduated license program and complete a drivers education course first. Drivers testing in Louisiana is conducted by the Office of Motor Vehicles and approved third-party road test providers.

Driver Test Requirements

Prior to allowing you to take a road skills exam, the Office of Motor Vehicles in Louisiana needs to make sure that you are fit to drive and won't be a threat to other drivers on the road. The requirements that are set before license applicants are age dependent and everyone who chooses to take a driver's test prior to their 17th birthday is required to follow the Louisiana graduated license program. For your convenience, we have broken these requirements into two sections, so you can skip right to the instructions that apply to you.

Road Test - Under 17 Years of Age

You can enter the program when you are at least 15 years of age. Your first step should be signing up for and completing a Louisiana driver's education course that consists of at least 30 hours of classroom instruction time and 8 hours of behind the wheel training. The course must be approved by the OMV.

Once drivers ed is completed, you are good to visit a local OMV office and obtain a Louisiana learner's permit. At this point, you are required to take a knowledge exam and a vision test. The permit allows you to start practicing driving while being supervised by a person who is at least 21 years of age and holds a valid driver's license. You will have to keep your permit for at least six months, observing all Louisiana permit restrictions during this stage.

When the period is up and you are at least 16 years of age, you are good to schedule your Louisiana driver's license test either with the OMV or with one of the approved third-party testers. Should you pass the driving test, you are issued with an intermediate drivers license. Note that “intermediate” status of your license, it means that you still have to watch out for Louisiana intermediate license restrictions even after you take the driving test.

Drivers Test - 17 Years of Age and Older

The good news is that if you are at least 17 years of age, you do not need to follow the graduated license program rules and meeting Louisiana driving test requirements suddenly becomes much easier. In fact, you don't even have to apply for a permit prior to taking the road test, but we advise against such option if you wish to practice before you take the test.

Although graduated license rules don't apply to you, the state still requires you to take either a full-scale driver's education program or a six-hour pre-licensing course. The course must be completed before you take the Louisiana permit test at the OMV, which is reasonable, since the information that appears in drivers ed courses comes in very handy for those taking the permit test. If you took the course, but are still not confident as to whether you are ready to take the test now, go ahead and take a Louisiana practice driver test online.

In addition to taking the knowledge exam, you will also be required to submit to vision examination before you can take the Louisiana OMV driver test. When you take the vision exam and the permit test, file the required paperwork, you can either be issued with a drivers permit or can go ahead and schedule the driving test right away. We advise that you obtain a permit first and spend some time practicing before you take the road test.

Once you pass the OMV driver test in Louisiana, you are issued with a full unrestricted drivers license.

Scheduling the Road Test

When it comes to taking a driving test, you have the choice between taking the road test through the OMV or doing it through one of the approved third-party testing centers. A list of approved third party testing centers is available online on the Internet and can be accessed through the OMV website, expresslane.org. The site also offers contact details for each one of the testing centers, so you may call them and find out the fees and dates available for testing.

If you wish to make a drivers test appointment with the Louisiana OMV, you can just go ahead and either call your nearest full service office or visit them in person.

You should try to make an appointment at least a week or two in advance. Summer months are usually the busiest since school's out for summer and many teenagers choose this time for obtaining a Louisiana driver's license. Keep this in mind when making plans for your appointment.

Cannot keep your appointment? Contact the OMV or the testing site at least 24 hours in advance so your spot doesn't go wasted.

Things to Bring / What to Expect

You should be aware of the fact that the OMV does not provide vehicles for you to take the test in, so it will be up to you to come up with a car to take the test in. The vehicle must be in good technical condition, be registered with the OMV and you must also carry proof of liability insurance. Some of the third party testing centers may offer you with vehicles to take the test in, however that will cost extra, so call around for rates.

If you already received a drivers permit, bring it to the testing site. If you don't have a permit, you will be required to provide proof of identity, residency, your social security number and other paperwork. The Louisiana driving manual has a full list of documents that must be presented upon license application.

Arriving for your appointment 10-15 minutes early is good practice. You should announce your arrival to the OMV stuff so you will be assisted. The examiner will also use this time to run a quick safety inspection of the vehicle. If the vehicle does not pass safety requirements, you will have to reschedule the drivers test for another day.

Got any questions about the test? Make sure to ask them before the test begins. Once the test started, you should avoid excessive talking and listen carefully to the instructions given to you by your driving examiner. The examiner will score the driving test as you go. The whole process should take approximately 30 minutes.

During the road test, you are expected to show your proficiency in performing the following things:

  • backing
  • keeping in lane
  • turning
  • following other vehicles
  • yielding right of way
  • parking between cars
  • attention to driving
  • response to signs & signals
  • approach to corner
  • use of signals

When the test is over, the examiner will explain to you the mistakes you may have made during the test. If you commit too many errors, you are failed and the examiner will tell you how long you need to practice before you can retake the exam again. There are also a few easy ways to fail your Louisiana driving test and these are violating any traffic law, committing a dangerous action, refusing to cooperate with the examiner or causing a traffic accident. If you fail the road test and you did not have a permit at the time, you may be offered one so you can practice before your next attempt.

Those who successfully pass the driving test are issued with a drivers license. Applicants under the age of 17 years may be issued with an intermediate license first and will need to observe all intermediate license restrictions.

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