You can’t drive alone with just a learner’s (driver’s) permit in the state of New York. Instead, you need a supervising driver with you in the front seat  to drive in New York. These driving laws pertain to you whether you live in New York City, Westchester, Syracuse, the Finger Lakes Region or any other part of New York state.

Most states have this same restriction except for a farm driving permit or something of that nature, which is not offered in the state of New York.

Rules for driving with a permit in New York

New York requires that motorists with a learner’s permit must drive with a supervising driver at least age 21 who has a driver’s license valid for operating the vehicle you’re driving. For example, only a person with a motorcycle license may supervise a motorcycle learner. Also, you can only drive with a learner’s permit between the hours of 5 a.m. and 9 p.m. in some parts of New York. However, in upstate New York, you can drive with a learner’s permit after 9 p.m. as long as you meet certain restrictions, including having a parent or guardian in the vehicle and limits on the age and number of passengers.

Additionally, if you hold a learner permit, junior permit or junior driver license from outside New York State, you must obey the restrictions New York places on their permit and junior drivers, in addition to those from your home state.

To drive with a learner’s permit, a supervising driver that’s at least 21 years old with a valid full driver’s license must be in the front seat. If you’re under age 16, you may not drive in New York even if you hold a permit or license issued outside the state.

What happens if you get pulled over with a permit in New York?

If you get pulled over driving alone with a learner’s permit in New York, you may face a fine of not less than $75 nor more than $300 and the state may delay allowing you to obtain your driver’s license.

The penalties in New York for being ticketed for driving against your permit restrictions (unlicensed) depend upon the exact offense that you are cited for by law enforcement. Likely being found with just a permit and not a license would fall under Section 509 of the New York Vehicle and Traffic Code, in which it says it’s illegal to drive a vehicle in New York unless the operator has a valid driver’s license.

Also, your parents should inform their car insurance company about your licensing status, including if you have a learner’s permit. Most insurance companies’ polices require the policy holder to notify the car insurance provider of any licensed driver in their household. According to the New York State Insurance Department, an insurer is permitted to consider all resident operators of an insured vehicle in rating of an auto insurance policy. This includes a child that only has their learner’s permit.

Insurance companies in New York are permitted to use classifications that reflect a possible exposure for liability on the part of the insurer, in the event that bodily injury or property damage occurs due to a child’s operation of the vehicle. So to be properly covered when driving with your learner’s permit, your parents should notify their auto insurance company that you have your learner’s permit and are starting to learn to drive.

As a teenager, your auto insurance will be higher due to your inexperience as a driver. Shopping around for cheap car insurance is important.

Can you drive with a permit in New York City?

New York City follows the same driving laws as New York state. So, a driver with a learner’s permit must have someone drive with them who’s at least 21. Motorists with learner’s permits in New York City are also limited to 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

You face the same fines driving alone with a learner’s permit in New York City — not less than $75 nor more than $300. You may also not be able to get your driver’s license when yoou reach