Driver Licensing Regional Testing Sites

KY Driver Testing Manual

Motorcycle Riders Test Manual

Commercial Driver's License (CDL) MANUAL AND PAYMENT OPTIONS
Call 800-542-5990 to schedule a CDL Skills Test




The Kentucky State Police reminds parents and teenagers that the only approved or endorsed material to prepare for the Kentucky driver license exam is located on our website at under the Driver Testing tab or by viewing it through the official KSP mobile app, ‘kspolice’. All Driver Testing materials can be viewed and printed through the Kentucky State Police website and mobile app free of charge.

Graduated License Course

Kentucky has Graduated Licensing laws in place to improve traffic safety and reduce traffic accidents, injuries and fatalities by controlling a young driver’s exposure and progressively moving the driver into more difficult driving experiences prior to full licensure. Drivers whose permits were issued under the age of 18 are required to complete a driver education program before moving to the full, unrestricted licensing phase. Before you are eligible to obtain a full, unrestricted license, you must complete a driver training program.

Acceptable methods of completing the course are as follows: 


The classroom version is offered free of charge to KY drivers.

Alive at 25 is taught only by current and former law enforcement officers across Kentucky that bring unique perspectives and experiences that affords their participants the greatest of opportunities for learning and understanding.  Knowing what it’s like to tell someone that their loved one has been killed or seriously injured in a car crash or able to express their sincere desire for young drivers to better understand and avoid the life changing emotional, criminal, and civil consequences of poor decision making, lends itself to the success of the course.


Graduated License Eligibility

You can check your course eligibility here.


Q. I’ll have to leave work to take my child for his road test. Can someone else come with him/her?

A. Yes. Anyone who is 21 years old or older and holds a valid driver’s license can accompany him/her.

Q. I tried to get a driver manual to study for a permit test and was told they don’t print them anymore. How can I study for the test?

A. There are several options for you. The manual is accessible online at the Kentucky State Police web site:

Q. I have heard that it’s not really necessary to study for the permit test because it requires mostly common sense answers. Is that true?

A. No. For the most part you are being tested on information that is learned so it’s important to study the driver manual which will give you a better chance of passing the test.

Q. My driver’s license was expired for over 5 years so I had to retake the permit and road test. I failed the road test even though I had been driving for over 30 years.

A. Everyone who takes a road test is required to meet certain minimum performance standards to pass, regardless of age or driving history. Sometimes, as drivers get older they form poor driving habits which can result in a road test failure. The principles you learn when you study for the permit test should be incorporated into your driving. If you do that, you should do well on your road test.

Q. I know you’re supposed to use your turn signals at least 100′ before a turn, but it’s hard for me to estimate how far that is.

A. If you line up 6 to 7 cars bumper to bumper it’s approximately 100′, so as you approach a turn pretend those cars are parked at the side of the road and turn on your turn signal no later than the back of that line of cars.

Q. I’m coming soon to take a permit test but have been having some vision problems. Is that something I should take care of before I come?

A. Yes. If you have an uncorrected vision problem or haven’t seen a vision specialist for a while, it would be best to do that before you come for the written test because everyone must pass a vision test before a permit or license test can be administered. If your doctor prescribes glasses or contacts, bring them with you. If you have an uncorrectable vision problem such as a lazy eye, bring a doctor’s statement describing the condition.

Q. My daughter is a good driver but is very nervous about taking the road test. Is there anything that could help her with that?

A. This is a very common problem but the causes of nervousness vary from one person to the next. The following is a list of common causes and possible solutions that may help:

  • A road test is a lot like any test you’d take at school; the more you prepare for it the less anxious you’ll feel about it. After receiving your permit, drive as often as possible so that your driving skills become second nature to you
  • Drive a car you’re familiar with for the test. It takes time for any driver to get used to a different car
  • Try not to rush through the test. Take your time and think about each maneuver
  • Don’t tell your friends about your road test until you’ve passed it.
  • Having someone grade your driving skills is unnerving to a lot of people. It might help to know that the examiner hopes your driving skills will allow you to pass the first time.

Q. When I’m coming up to an intersection and the light turns yellow, I don’t always know whether I should try to stop or go on through. Is there a way to judge that?

A. As with other driving skills, it takes both knowledge and experience to know what the best decision would be. As you approach an intersection with a traffic light, always be prepared to stop by keeping an eye on the light so you’ll know as soon as it changes. If it changes to yellow and you can bring your car to a smooth, safe stop behind the stop line or crosswalk area, then you should do so. If you have to stop abruptly, or if your car will end up on the stop line or crosswalk area, then it would be a better choice to go on through. You may enter an intersection on a yellow light if necessary, but it is against the law to enter the intersection on a red light. Never speed up to try to make it through a light if you can stop safely.

Q. I have trouble reading in school but someone told me I can get an oral test for my permit. Do I have to make an appointment for it?

A. If your county administers tests on computers you will not need to make an appointment. The computers are equipped with a handset which allows you to take your test orally. If paper tests are given in your area, you should contact the driver examiner for information on scheduling an oral test.

Q. How do I take the written permit test if I am deaf or hard hearing?

A. Contact the license examiner in the county you live in. The examiner will contact the Commission of Deaf and Hard Hearing, at 800-372-2907, and schedule a date and time for you to test with an interpreter.

Q. Do I need a CDL?


  1. If the manufacturer’s weight rating (GVWR/GCWR) of your power unit is 26,001 pounds or greater and you pull something 10,001 or greater you need a class “A” CDL.
  2. If the manufacturer’s weight rating (GVWR) of your single vehicle is 26,001 pounds or greater you need a class “B” CDL.
  3. If your vehicle is designed to carry 16 or more persons to include the driver, that meets neither the definition of a group A or group B vehicle, You need a class “C” CDL.
  4. Does your vehicle carry placarded hazardous materials? If the answer is yes you need a class “C” CDL. This applies to a vehicle with a manufacturer’s weight rating that is less than 26,001 pounds. Any single vehicle having a GVWR over 26,001 would require a class “B” license, a class “A” would be required if you attach a trailer with a GVWR greater than 10,000 lbs. A class “C” CDL for example would be required for a car transporting medical oxygen cylinders for home deliveries because it would be required to be placarded.

Q. Do farmers need a CDL to operate a vehicle 26,001 pounds or greater pulling something 10,001 pounds or greater? Or driving a vehicle 26,001 pounds or greater with no trailer?

A. No, not as long as the use is inside the Commonwealth of Kentucky or is within 150 miles of your farm if you have entered another state and the use is farm related.

Q. Do firefighters need a CDL?

A. No, not to operate emergency vehicles for official use.

Q. Do you have to have a CDL to operate a military vehicle?

A. No, as long as you are in the military and you are operating a military vehicle during the course of your duty.

Q. Do you need a CDL to operate a recreational vehicle?.

A. No.

Q. What are the steps to get my CDL?


Effective January 30, 2012, Federal Motor Carrier’s Safety Regulation 49 CFR 383.71 requires all CDL holders/applicants to have a valid DOT medical card on file with the Division of Driver Licensing in order to obtain/retain a valid CDL license/permit. CDL holders/applicants must provide a legible copy of both front and back of the medical card. Also, prior to the issuance of an original, renewal or upgrade CDL/CLP all CDL holders/applicants must self certify as to what type driving they are operating in or expect to operate in by completing TC 94-169, Commercial Driver License Self Certification form. The above information must be forwarded to the Division of Driver Licensing and posted to the driver’s CDLIS record prior to applying for issuance of a CDL/ CLP at the circuit court clerk’s office.

The Commercial Driver Licensing application and the Self Certification form are accessible from the DDL website: Licensing

A CDL holder/applicant must forward the required information to the Division of Driver Licensing using one of three methods available. The information may be mailed to Division of Driver Licensing, 200 Mero St., Frankfort, KY 40622, or faxed to 502-564-3250 or scanned and emailed to All CDL holders/applicants will receive written notification when the information has posted to their CDLIS record. Once the driver/applicant has received written notification of their approval they can proceed to the circuit court clerk’s office to begin/complete the issuance process.

All applicants will be required to successfully pass a knowledge test either in written or oral form, and a vision test. A CDL instruction permit will then be issued that is valid for six (6) months. You may schedule a road skills test with Kentucky State Police 10 days after the permit has been issued. A permit may only be renewed once in the two (2) year period. If you do not successfully pass the road skills test by the expiration of your CDL instruction permit renewal, you will need to reapply. All fees and written tests will be required prior to a new permit being issued.

Step 1: Go to your local Circuit Clerks Office or visit online and obtain the required forms
TC 94-169 Commercial Drivers License Self Certification form, TC 94-32 Commercial Drivers License Application, and TC 94-35 Medical Examination Report – For Commercial Driver Fitness Determination.

Step 2: Go to a qualified physician and receive a DOT Physical Examination.

Step 3: Submit copies of your medical card and self certification form to DDL.

Step 4: Once you receive your written notification in the mail that all information has been received and posted, return to your local Circuit Clerks Office for processing.

Step 5: Study and take your written test(s) The Commercial Drivers License Manual is available online to help you study for the tests. A copy may also be printed for your convenience from the online website.

Step 6: Receive your permit and practice your driving skills,

Step 7: After you have had your permit for 14 days, schedule your road test appointment by calling 1-800-542-5990.

Step 8: Successfully complete your road test and return to your local Circuit Clerks Office for issuance of your Commercial Drivers License.

Q. How long is my CDL valid?

A. Commercial Drivers Licenses are valid for 4 years and remain valid as long as you keep renewing it. Each time you renew your CDL you will have to show the Circuit Court Clerk a valid DOT Medical Card. If you have a hazardous materials endorsement, you will be required to be fingerprinted and take the written exam prior to renewing your CDL license with a hazmat endorsement.

Q. How long is my DOT Medical Card valid?

A. Two years. But, a doctor can make it valid for a lesser period of time. If you have a medical condition that the doctor determines should be monitored sooner than every two years.

Q. How many times can I take my written CDL test?

A. As many times as you need, but only once per day

Q. How many times can I take my CDL Road Test?



Q. Do I need to provide my own vehicle for a road skills test?

A. Yes.

Q. Does the weight on my vehicle tag matter as far as the driver needing a CDL?

A. No, the weight on the tag is not the weight that determines if you need a CDL. The weight is the GVWR or Gross Vehicle Weight Rating. This weight is determined by the manufacturer of the vehicle or trailer. GVWR and GCWR are normally determined by checking the vehicle manufacture’s identification plate, usually located inside of the driver’s side door or on the header board or tongue of the trailer.

**For buses, the plate may be located inside of the passenger door or to the left of the driver’s seat.

Q. Do I need a CDL license if the vehicle has Air Brakes?

A. Air Brakes do not determine whether or not the vehicle requires a CDL to drive it. Only the GVWR of the vehicle determines that.

Q. Can I drive a CDL vehicle by myself as a CDL permit holder?

A. No, you must have a CDL Licensed driver, at least 21 yrs of age with you that has the type CDL you are attempting to attain. Example: If you have a Class A CDL Permit then your passenger must have a Class A CDL License. If you have a Class B CDL Permit you must have a Class B Licensed passenger or a Class A licensed passenger with you. (Your passenger can have a higher class CDL License than you are attempting to obtain but not a lower level CDL). If the vehicle you are driving requires an endorsement such as school bus or passenger, then your licensed driver must have those endorsements also.

An officer handed me this form to fill out. What do I do now?

A.Complete the form and make 2 copies, one for your records and one for your insurance company. Mail the original to:

Kentucky State Police Records
Attn: Crash
1266 Louisville Road
Frankfort, KY 40601

Q.I forgot to make a copy. What do I do now?

a. You may print a blank form from our public website at and submit the form again.

b. You may mail in a written request for a copy of the form, including your name, the date and county of the collision, and a $5 check or money order made payable to the Kentucky State Treasurer.

Q.I mailed in the form but I haven’t heard anything back.

A. You will not hear anything back from the records department. There is no further investigation on our part. We are simply the state repository. We maintain a copy of your report for a period of three years in the event that you misplace your copy.

Q. Do I need to mail in any additional information, such as a copy of my insurance card?

A.No. Any documentation that is received other than the civilian collision report form will be either shredded or returned to you. Please do not include pictures, insurance cards, driver’s licenses, etc. We can only maintain the civilian collision report in our database.

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