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Instruction Permit

321.180 Instruction permits.

1. a. (1) A person who is at least eighteen years of age and who, except for the person’s
lack of instruction in operating a motor vehicle, would be qualified to obtain a driver’s license,
shall, upon meeting the requirements of section 321.186 other than a driving demonstration,
and upon paying the required fee, be issued an instruction permit by the department. Subject
to the limitations in this subsection, an instruction permit entitles the permittee, while having
the permit in the permittee’s immediate possession, to operate a motor vehicle, other than a
commercial motor vehicle or as a chauffeur or a motor vehicle with a gross vehicle weight
rating of sixteen thousand one or more pounds, upon the highways for a period not to exceed
four years from the licensee’s birthday anniversary in the year of issuance. If the applicant
for an instruction permit holds a driver’s license issued in this state valid for the operation of
a motorized bicycle or a motorcycle, the instruction permit shall be valid for such operation
without the need of an accompanying person.
(2) A permittee shall not be penalized for failing to have the instruction permit in
immediate possession if the permittee produces in court, within a reasonable time, an
instruction permit issued to the permittee and valid at the time of the permittee’s arrest or
at the time the permittee was charged with failure to have the permit in the permittee’s
immediate possession.
b. (1) Except as otherwise provided, a permittee who is eighteen years of age or older
must be accompanied by a person issued a driver’s license valid for the vehicle operated
who is a member of the permittee’s immediate family if the family member is at least
twenty-one years of age, an approved driver education instructor, a prospective driver
education instructor who is enrolled in a practitioner preparation program with a safety
education program approved by the state board of education, or a person at least twenty-five
years of age, and who is actually occupying a seat beside the driver.
(2) However, if the permittee is operating a motorcycle in accordance with this
section or section 321.180B, the accompanying person must be within audible and visual
communications distance from the permittee and be accompanying the permittee on or in a
different motor vehicle. Only one permittee shall be under the immediate supervision of an
accompanying qualified person.

2. A person who holds a class A, B, C, or D driver’s license, upon meeting each of the
following requirements, shall be eligible to apply for a commercial driver’s instruction permit
valid for the operation of a commercial motor vehicle, except a vehicle transporting hazardous
materials requiring placarding, when the permittee is accompanied by a person properly
licensed to operate a commercial motor vehicle and actually occupying a seat beside the
permittee. An applicant must be at least eighteen years of age and qualified to obtain a
valid commercial driver’s license including the requirements of section 321.188 other than the
knowledge examination and driving skills tests. The commercial driver’s instruction permit
shall be valid for a period not to exceed six months. A commercial driver’s instruction permit
may be renewed only once in any two-year period. If the applicant for a commercial driver’s
instruction permit holds a driver’s license issued in this state valid for the operation of a
commercial or noncommercial vehicle, the commercial driver’s instruction permit shall be
valid for such operation without the need of an accompanying person.

3. A person, upon meeting each of the following requirements, shall be eligible to
apply for a chauffeur’s instruction permit valid for the operation of a motor vehicle, other
than a commercial motor vehicle, as a chauffeur when the permittee is accompanied by a
person, possessing a valid class D driver’s license or commercial driver’s license valid for
the operation of the motor vehicle and the accompanying person is actually occupying a
seat beside the permittee. An applicant must be at least eighteen years of age, otherwise
qualified to obtain a class D driver’s license, and must meet the requirements of section
321.186 other than a driving demonstration. The chauffeur’s instruction permit shall be
valid for a period not to exceed two years from the licensee’s birthday anniversary in the
year of issuance and shall be returned to the department upon issuance of a class D driver’s
license or commercial driver’s license. If the applicant for a chauffeur’s instruction permit
holds a driver’s license issued under this chapter, the chauffeur’s instruction permit shall be
Tue Dec 22 00:31:13 2015 Iowa Code 2015, Section 321.180 (16, 2)
§321.180, MOTOR VEHICLES AND LAW OF THE ROAD 2
valid in the same manner as the driver’s license would be for the operation of motor vehicles
without the need of an accompanying person.

4. The instruction permit, chauffeur’s instruction permit, and commercial driver’s
instruction permit are subject to suspension or revocation for the same reasons and in the
same manner as suspension or revocation of a driver’s license.

5. A motorcycle instruction permit issued under this section is not renewable.
[C31, 35, §4960-d23; C39, §5013.06; C46, 50, 54, 58, 62, 66, 71, 73, 75, 77, 79, 81, §321.180]
88 Acts, ch 1134, §67; 89 Acts, ch 265, §39; 90 Acts, ch 1230, §26; 98 Acts, ch 1073, §9; 98
Acts, ch 1112, §3, 4, 14, 16; 2006 Acts, ch 1068, §20, 21; 2010 Acts, ch 1061, §180