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West Virginia Driver’s License: A Comprehensive Guide

  • Auto Insurance
  • Gerard Stevens
  • 7 minutes

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West Virginia is known for its picturesque mountain beauty, friendly people, and exciting outdoor recreation opportunities. And if you’re a road tripper, all the small towns along Interstate 64 will make you say ‘wow.’ But if you live in the ‘Mountain State,’ you must have a West Virginia driver’s license to drive legally. Do you have one, though? 

If not, you must apply for one. It is because driving without a license is a misdemeanor getting a fine of up to $500. A second or subsequent offense carries a maximum fine of $500 or up to six months in jail. As a resident, you will love to avoid these! Isn’t it? 

Are you so confused about the Virginia driver’s license application process? Don’t worry! Our blog covers everything about getting a driver’s license in West Virginia! 

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What do you need to get your driver’s license in West Virginia? 

To obtain a West Virginia driver’s license, you must be at least 17 years old. Also, produce the following documents when you visit the DMV while applying.  

  • Identity proof: It can be a valid alien registration receipt card, a US birth certificate or passport, a certificate of naturalization, or a citizenship certificate. 
  • Social Security Number (SSN): It can be your Social Security card, the original W-2 form, or the 1099 form. 
  • Proof of legal name change: It can include a court order, marriage certificate, divorce decree, or birth certificate implying your legal name change. 
  • Residency proof: It can be a mortgage statement, lease agreement, bank statement, West Virginia voter registration card, car insurance card, W-2 form, or utility bill. 

Consult the West Virginia DMV website for the complete list of approved documents. 

How to get a driver’s license in West Virginia 

So, planning to get a license in the state? Then you should be aware of some things.  

  1. If you’re a new driver over 18, you only need to hold a permit for 30 days before attending the driving test and getting your full license.
  2. Suppose your age is between 15-17. You must complete the three-part graduated driver’s license program to obtain your full unrestricted license. It includes the following.
  • Learner’s permit 
  • Intermediate driver’s license 
  • Full driver’s license 

You will first get an instruction permit so that you can practice driving with the supervision of a licensed adult driver. The intermediate license is the next step, allowing you to drive with certain restrictions. Finally, you can obtain your full West Virginia driver’s license, allowing you to drive independently anytime and from any location. 

How to get a permit 

If your age is between 15 and 17, you must complete the graduated driver’s licensing (GDL) program. The learner’s permit is the first level, which lets you drive under a licensed driver’s supervision. You must pass the vision and knowledge tests to obtain a permit. 

  • Vision test: To obtain a driver’s license in West Virginia, drivers must have 20/40 vision in both eyes. Failure to pass the vision screening may result in license restrictions or denial of your license entirely. 
  • Knowledge test: You can attend this test after passing the vision test. This section of your driving test comprises 25 multiple-choice questions about West Virginia traffic laws, road safety practices, and road signs. To pass, you must answer 19 out of 25 questions correctly. 

How to get an intermediate driver’s license   

You can apply for an intermediate license when you reach the age of 16. In West Virginia, you must have held your permit for a minimum of six months with no violations to be eligible for an intermediate license. You must also undergo 50 hours of driving experience (ten of which must be at night), confirmed with the sign of a parent or guardian. 

Requirements  

Schedule an appointment to take your driving test to obtain your intermediate driver’s license if you are ready. You must bring the following items on the test day. 

  • Your SSN and card 
  • Documents proving your identity 
  • Two proofs of West Virginia residency  
  • Your school’s Driver’s Eligibility Certificate 
  • The renewal fee in cash 
  • Permission from your parent or legal guardian 
  • Your completed driving log (50 hours total, with ten at night) 

For the driving test, your car must be in the best condition. Ensure that all mirrors, headlights, turn signals, brake lights, etc., are working. Also, your car must have registration and proper auto insurance.  

Restrictions  

  • Be ready to face these restrictions while driving with an intermediate driver’s license. 
  • It is illegal to text or talk on a mobile phone while driving. 
  • You cannot drive with alcohol inside your car.  
  • Besides your family member, you cannot drive anyone under 20 for the first six months after getting your license. 
  • You can only drive with one person under 20 without a family member six months after getting your license. 
  • You may not drive alone between 10 pm and 5 am unless you drive to or from a school, religious event, workplace, or emergency. 

How to get a full driver’s license 

driver's license in West Virginia

Image courtesy: transportation.wv.gov

You can apply for a full driver’s license at a driver’s licensing office once you turn 17 and have held an intermediate license with no violations for at least one year. With a full license, you can drive anytime without the supervision of an adult. Your license will be valid until you reach the age of 21. But you must follow some basic restrictions. 

  • You cannot drive with alcohol inside your car.  
  • Everyone in the car must wear seat belts. 

How much does it cost to get a driver’s license in West Virginia? 

The cost of a West Virginia driver’s license depends on your age, and the years your license will remain valid before renewal. The cost of a driver’s license in West Virginia is between $15.50-$35.50 for drivers above 18. A Level 1 or 2 graduated license costs $7.50 for young drivers, while a Level 3 graduated license can cost up to $10.50. 

How many numbers are on a West Virginia driver’s license? 

The West Virginia driver’s license number consists of seven numbers.   

What is a Class E driver’s license in West Virginia? 

When a driver has held their intermediate license for at least a year with no violations, they will be eligible for a full Class E license at 17. 

How old do you have to be to get your driver’s license in West Virginia? 

You must be 17 to get a West Virginia driver’s license.  

Does West Virginia have an enhanced driver’s license? 

Yes. The DMV in the state issues REAL-ID-compliant licenses, known as a ‘For Federal’ or ‘gold star’ license or ID card. 

Is a West Virginia driver’s license accepted for air travel? 

Yes. But you must have a REAL-ID-compliant driver’s license to fly out of West Virginia airports.  

Can you renew your West Virginia driver’s license online? 

Yes. The DMV allows you to renew your license online. Learn more about the renewal process via our blog! 

Getting auto insurance in West Virginia 

Driving without valid auto insurance can lead to your driver’s license suspension. Also, you will incur hefty penalties. Certainly, you will love to avoid these! So, always have an auto insurance policy while you drive. But how can you get an affordable one in West Virginia?  

That’s where Way.com turns into your best friend! Use our website or app to find quotes from multiple insurers in your state. Then you must compare the quotes and buy the most inexpensive auto insurance policy. So, why wait for more? Find the best West Virginia auto insurance policy today! 

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