Understand Joshua’s Law Requirements for Georgia Drivers

Written by Liam Hoch
Understand Joshua’s Law Requirements for Georgia Drivers

Have you ever wondered about the driving laws that keep Georgia’s roads safe, especially for young drivers? Joshua’s Law requirements is a prime example, designed to educate and prepare teen drivers for the responsibilities of being behind the wheel. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the intricacies of Joshua’s Law, its origins, and its impact on Georgia drivers. By the end, you’ll have a comprehensive understanding of the law and the benefits it brings to Georgia’s roads.

Short Summary

  • Joshua’s Law is a Georgia law enacted in 2005 to improve teenage driver safety.
  • 16-year olds must complete an approved driver education course and acquire at least 40 hours of supervised driving experience, including six hours at night, to obtain a Class D license.
  • Completing the Joshua’s Law Course provides young drivers with essential driving skills for safe and responsible road use while adhering to licensing requirements.

Understanding Joshua's Law: The Basics

Joshua’s Law, also known as Senate Bill 226, was enacted in Georgia in 2005, with the primary goal of improving safety among teen drivers. The law strives to decrease the number of teenage drivers involved in fatal motor vehicle crashes by providing adolescents with the necessary information and skills to become safe and conscientious drivers.

As a result, those aged 16 must complete a 30-hour driver education course and have at least 40 hours of supervised driving experience, as required by the Georgia DDS, to be eligible for a Class D license.

The Origin of Joshua's Law

Joshua’s Law was established in memory of Joshua Brown, a high school student who tragically lost his life in a hydroplaning accident in 2003. His parents transformed their grief into a mission to ensure that all adolescents have the chance to learn the driving skills necessary to protect themselves on the road.

This led to the creation of Joshua’s Law and the implementation of stricter requirements for teen drivers in Georgia, thus making our roads safer for everyone.

The Goals of Joshua's Law

The primary aim of Joshua’s Law is to reduce the number of teen driver fatalities and promote safe driving habits.

Since its implementation in 2007, Joshua’s Law has had a positive impact on teen driver fatalities and has encouraged safe driving habits among young drivers.

The objectives of the law are:

  • To ensure that adolescents receive quality driver education
  • To make prospective drivers aware of the responsibilities of driving
  • To provide high-quality instruction for young drivers

Requirements for 16-Year-Olds Seeking a Class D License

For 16-year-olds in Georgia seeking a Class D License, there are specific requirements that must be met. These requirements include completing an approved driver education course and acquiring at least 40 hours of supervised driving experience, including six hours at night.

Meeting these requirements is essential in order to obtain a Class D provisional license, which allows young drivers to operate a motor vehicle under certain restrictions.

Driver Education Course

Completing a state-approved driver education course is crucial for fulfilling Joshua’s Law requirements and obtaining a Class D License. This course typically consists of 30 hours of classroom instruction and aims to provide young drivers with the knowledge and skills needed to become safe and responsible drivers.

By completing the driver education course, Georgia’s teen drivers can better prepare themselves for the challenges they may face on the road.

Supervised Driving Hours

In addition to completing the driver education course, 16-year-olds must also complete 40 hours of supervised driving experience, with at least six hours being at night. This is a critical component of Joshua’s Law requirements, as it provides young drivers with the opportunity to practice their driving skills under the guidance of a parent, guardian, or licensed driver training school.

Upon completion of the required driving hours, a parent or legal guardian must sign an affidavit confirming the student’s driving practice.

Navigating the Licensing Process in Georgia

Understanding the licensing process in Georgia is essential for any young driver looking to obtain a driver’s license. The process involves obtaining a learner’s permit (Class CP), acquiring a provisional license (Class D), and eventually upgrading to a full license (Class C).

In the following sections, we will guide you through each step of the licensing process to help you navigate the path to obtaining a Georgia driver’s license.

Obtaining a Learner's Permit (Class CP)

To obtain a Georgia learner’s permit, also known as an instructional permit, an individual must be at least 15 years of age and have completed a driver education course. The learner’s permit allows young drivers to practice their driving skills under the supervision of a licensed driver who is at least 21 years old and holds a valid Class C driver license.

To apply for a learner’s permit, applicants must provide a valid birth certificate, Social Security card, and proof of residency. Keep in mind that fees associated with obtaining a learner’s permit may vary depending on the county.

Acquiring a Provisional License (Class D)

Once a young driver has held a learner’s permit for at least 12 months and one day, they become eligible to apply for a Class D provisional license. To do so, they must demonstrate that they have fulfilled the Joshua’s Law requirements, including completing a driver education course and acquiring 40 hours of supervised driving experience.

In addition, applicants must pass a road test and a vision test administered by the Georgia Department of Driver Services to obtain their Class D driver’s license. The Class D provisional license comes with certain restrictions, such as limitations on the number of passengers under the age of 21 who are not immediate family members, ensuring that the driver’s license serves as a responsible step towards full driving privileges.

Upgrading to a Full License (Class C)

After turning 18 years old, drivers with a Class D provisional license can apply online to upgrade to a Class C full license. The Class C license removes the restrictions associated with the Class D provisional license, granting young drivers more freedom on the road.

It’s important to note that maintaining a clean driving record and avoiding major traffic violations is necessary for a smooth transition from a provisional to a full license.

Benefits of Completing a Joshua's Law Course

Completing a Joshua’s Law course not only helps young drivers fulfill the requirements for obtaining a Class D license, but it also offers numerous benefits. These benefits include developing safe and responsible driving skills and prioritizing road safety.

In the following sections, we will discuss these benefits in greater detail, showcasing the importance of completing a Joshua’s Law course.

Safe and Responsible Driving Skills

Learning safe and responsible driving skills through a Joshua’s Law course is crucial for reducing the likelihood of accidents and promoting road safety. The course covers essential topics such as:

  • Defensive driving techniques
  • Knowledge of and adherence to traffic laws
  • The use of signals and mirrors
  • Maintaining an appropriate following distance
  • Avoiding distractions while driving

By mastering these skills, young drivers will be better equipped to face the challenges of the road and ensure the safety of themselves and others.

Prioritizing Road Safety

A Joshua’s Law course emphasizes the importance of prioritizing road safety for all drivers. The course addresses potential risks associated with:

  • Speeding
  • Driving under the influence
  • Distracted driving
  • Reckless driving
  • Failure to wear a seatbelt

It helps young drivers understand the consequences of their actions and encourages responsible driving habits.

By completing the course, teen drivers will be better prepared to make responsible decisions on the road, ultimately contributing to a safer driving environment for everyone.

Additional Resources for Georgia Drivers

Alongside the Joshua’s Law course, there are several additional resources available to Georgia drivers. These resources can provide further support and information to help young drivers navigate the road to becoming responsible and safe drivers.

In the following sections, we will introduce two notable resources: the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety and the Driver’s Education Grant Scholarship Program.

Governor's Office of Highway Safety

The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety is an organization that focuses on highway safety issues, aiming to:

  • Reduce traffic fatalities and injuries
  • Provide leadership
  • Gather highway safety data
  • Implement campaigns to educate the public on safe driving behaviors.

By offering additional resources and support, the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety plays a significant role in promoting safe driving practices in Georgia.

Driver's Education Grant Scholarship Program

The Driver’s Education Grant Scholarship Program is a statewide program in Georgia that offers financial assistance to eligible students aged 15 to 17 who wish to fulfill the Joshua’s Law Driver’s Education requirement. By providing financial support, the program helps qualified students cover the cost of driver education courses, making it easier for them to access the necessary training and resources.

Parents or guardians can qualify for a tax credit of up to $150 when their dependent minor child completes a driver education course offered by a licensed private driver education school. The Department of Driver Services (DDS) grants the license for these schools.


In conclusion, understanding Joshua’s Law is essential for young drivers in Georgia. The law promotes safe and responsible driving habits by requiring 16-year-olds to complete a driver education course and obtain supervised driving experience before obtaining a Class D license. By fulfilling these requirements and upgrading to a full Class C license, young drivers can contribute to a safer driving environment for everyone on the road.

We hope this blog post has provided you with valuable insights into Joshua’s Law and its importance in promoting road safety in Georgia. With the knowledge and resources presented here, young drivers can confidently navigate the path to becoming responsible and safe drivers.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Joshua’s law required in Georgia?

Yes, Joshua’s Law is required in Georgia for teen drivers under the age of 18 to earn a valid driver license. The requirements include completing a 30-hour driver education course and 40 hours of supervised driving.

How many hours of Joshua’s law do you need in Georgia

In Georgia, 16- and 17-year-old teens seeking their first license must complete a 30-hour Joshua’s Law course as well as 40 hours of supervised driving practice.

Do you have to take a Joshua’s law course at 17 in Georgia?

Starting July 1st, 2021, teens aged 16-17 in Georgia must take a safety course before they can get their license, in accordance with “Joshua’s Law” or House Bill 466.

They will also need to complete 40 hours of behind-the-wheel driving practice with a parent or a commercial driving school to earn their license.

What is the primary goal of Joshua’s Law in Georgia?

Joshua’s Law aims to promote safety among teenage drivers by providing them with the knowledge and skills necessary to be responsible drivers.

It focuses on teaching teens the importance of defensive driving, obeying traffic laws, and avoiding distractions while behind the wheel. It also encourages parents to be involved in their teen’s driving education and to set a good example.

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Written by
Liam Hoch
Liam Hoch researches and writes about safe driving for DriverZ. Having been a passenger in multiple near-catastrophic vehicle collisions, Liam knows first-hand the dangers of distracted, reckless, and unsafe driving. Passionate about our core principles of helping to make safer drivers and, ultimately, saving lives, Liam stays at the forefront of driving safety innovation and research.

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