Wisconsin pilot program launches for teen drivers to waive road test

Teenage drivers in Wisconsin can now waive their road test when applying for a probationary driver license. The pilot program came in response to the COVID-19 pandemic as an effort to decrease the amount of in-person visits to the Division of Motor Vehicles offices.

Monday marked the first day Wisconsin teens under the age of 18 with the consent of an adult sponsor could skip the road test requirement to get their driver's license. To be eligible, the teens had to have their permit for six months without violations and completed a driver education course among other requirements. Those who had previously failed a road test are not eligibile for the waiver.

A sponsor (a parent or guardian) would agree to accept responsibility and vouch for the safe driving abilities of the new driver.

Wisconsin Department of Transportation officials hope the pilot program will also help decrease the estimated backlog of 16,000 road test requests. Of these, 10,000 will be eligible for the road test waiver.

According to WisDOT, 98 percent of drivers under the age of 18 pass their road test on their first or second attempt.

DMV road tests resume on May 26 for those who aren't eligible for the road test waiver or would prefer a road test.

For more information about the waiver for teen drivers, click here.