Insurance

How does graduated licensing work?

Handing a boy some car keys

With CAA Members who have children about to turn 16, if you are anything like me, you had no idea what is involved in getting a driver's licence these days. Your child still has to pass a vision test and a test of their knowledge of the rules of the road and traffic signs. That's where the similarity to the old system ends. You must now pass two road tests to become fully licensed.

Ontario's Graduated Licensing System (GLS) allows new drivers to obtain driving skills and experience gradually. New drivers earn full driving privileges in two stages, and have 5 years to complete the program (G1, G2) and graduate to a full licence (class G).

Class G1

A new driver must hold a G1 licence for a minimum of 12 months before attempting the G1 road test. This time can be reduced to 8 months if an approved driver education course, such as the CAA Driver Training Course, is completed.

New drivers learn to drive with six important conditions:

  • Maintain a zero blood alcohol level while driving
  • Be accompanied by a fully licensed driver, who has at least four years driving experience, and a blood alcohol level of less than .05 percent just in case it is necessary to take over the wheel
  • Ensure that the accompanying driver is the only other person in the front seat
  • Ensure the number of passengers in the vehicle is limited to the number of working seat belts
  • Refrain from driving on Ontario's “400 series” highways or high speed expressways. If accompanied by a driving instructor licensed in Ontario, this restriction does not apply
  • Refrain from driving between midnight and 5:00am
How does this affect your insurance?

Please advise your Insurance Company that there is a G1 driver on your policy. There is no premium charge for a G1 driver. Adding the G1 driver to the policy builds up an insurance history that will benefit the driver in the years to follow.

Class G2

A new driver must hold a G2 licence for a minimum of 12 months before they can attempt the G2 road test. At this level the driver has more privileges due to their driving experience. They may now drive without an accompanying driver on all Ontario roads at any time.

They still must:

  • Maintain a zero blood alcohol level while driving
  • Ensure that the number of passengers in the vehicle is limited to the number of working seat belts
  • In the first six months after receiving your G2 license, you are allowed to carry only one passenger aged 19 or under.
  • After six months with your G2 license and until you obtain your full G license or turn 20, you are allowed to carry up to three passengers aged 19 or under.
  • Exemptions - the passenger restrictions for teenage drivers do not apply if you are accompanied by a fully licensed driver (with at least four years of driving experience) in the front seat or if your young passengers are members of your immediate family.

According to the statistics, new drivers of all ages are much more likely to get into crashes than experienced drivers. Collisions are the leading killer of people between 16 and 24. Graduated licensing is one way to reduce the risks new drivers face.

How does this affect your insurance?

A premium charge will be applied to your insurance. All G2 drivers residing in your household and driving a vehicle MUST be added to your insurance policy. Credit will be given for one year's driving experience for G1 and the driver will receive a rate reduction of 10% (if accident and ticket free) for all coverage's where the driver's experience is used as a rating factor for a period of one year. Driver training discounts will also apply where applicable.

To find out about CAA Driver Training Courses for new drivers for further insurance savings call 1-800-268-3750.