Provisional P2 licence

Once you’ve held your provisional P1 licence for at least 12 months, you can apply for a provisional P2 licence.

Changes to the Graduated Licensing Scheme from 20 November 2017

Changes are coming for L, P1 and P2 drivers - find out how this will affect you.

Getting your P2 licence

To apply for your P2 licence you must:

From 20 November 2017, P1 licence holders who haven't already done the Hazard Perception Test (HPT) will need to pass it in order to progress to a P2 licence.

Once you pay the required fees and pass the driving test, your photo will be taken. Depending on the location you attend, your licence card will either be handed over the counter or posted to you. If it’s posted, you’ll receive a temporary paper licence to drive with until your new card arrives.

Your P2 licence is valid for 36 months. After 24 months, you can upgrade to a full unrestricted licence, as long as you haven't been suspended for unsafe driving behaviour.

P2 drivers who receive a suspension for unsafe driving behaviour must stay on their licence for an extra 6 months for every suspension they receive. For example if a P2 licence holder receives demerit point suspension, they will have to hold their P2 licence for the normal 24 months but will stay on their P2 for an extra 6 months, before being able to apply for a full licence. Each separate suspension delays the P2 licence holder an extra 6 months. P2 drivers who do not get a suspension are not affected by these changes.

Rules for P2 drivers

In addition to complying with the NSW Road Rules, you must:

  • Display P plates (green P on a white background) clearly on the outside of the front and back of the vehicle. The letter P on the plate must not be hidden. If you’re towing a trailer, a P plate must be on the back of the trailer
  • Observe the posted speed limit and never drive over the maximum speed limit of 100 km/h
  • Not have any alcohol in your system when you drive a vehicle. It’s also illegal to drive under the influence of drugs
  • Not supervise a learner driver
  • Ensure all occupants, including yourself, are in a seat with a seatbelt or an approved restraint fitted, with each passenger using the seatbelt or restraint
  • Not use any mobile phones, including hand free devices or loudspeaker, while driving or while your vehicle is stopped but not parked

Failure to follow any of these rules is an offence and carries heavy penalties, including loss of licence.

You must comply with these NSW rules when you are driving interstate or overseas. You should also make yourself aware of any licensing or driving laws that another jurisdiction may apply to you as a visiting novice driver.

Demerit points

Demerit points apply to P2 drivers. Your P2 licence will be suspended or refused if you reach or exceed 7 demerit points. P2 drivers who receive a suspension for unsafe driving behaviour must stay on their P2 licence for an extra 6 months for every suspension they receive.

Speeding offences

If you commit any speeding offence you’ll receive a minimum of 4 demerit points. A suspension or refusal period also applies for any excessive speed offence (more than 30km/h over the speed limit).

Passenger conditions

If you’ve been disqualified for any driving offence committed on or after 11 July 2005, when your disqualification period ends you must not carry more than one passenger at any time while driving. This condition will apply for 12 months. This is known as the ‘one passenger condition’.

You may apply for an exemption by attending a registry or service centre in person, completing the P1/P2 passenger or vehicle exemption form and paying the application fee.

Exemptions from the one passenger condition will only be granted in exceptional circumstances. You must provide reasons why your situation is exceptional.

If an exemption is granted, it will be limited to specific circumstances such as employment, and may also be limited to certain vehicles.

You must notify Roads and Maritime within 14 days if you have changed any circumstances which affect your exemption, including if you no longer require the exemption, or if the exemption letter needs replacing. A further fee may apply.

More information

See the Frequently asked questions, or contact us for more information.

Prohibited vehicles

Prohibited vehicle conditions apply to provisional licence holders to keep novice drivers safe on our roads.

From 1 August 2014, a high performance vehicle is defined as a vehicle which:

Please go to the Prohibited vehicles- definitions page to see how the PMR is calculated.

Note: An exception from the prohibited vehicles condition applies if:

  1. You obtained a provisional licence before 1 Aug 2014 and continue to hold that licence, and
  2. The vehicle you are driving is now prohibited under the above definition, but was not previously prohibited under the previous definition.

You must not drive a banned vehicle unless you have been issued with an exemption.

You may apply for an exemption by attending a registry or service centre in person, completing the P1/P2 passenger or vehicle exemption form and paying the application fee.

An exemption from the prohibited vehicle condition may be granted if:

  • A prohibited vehicle needs to be driven for genuine employment purposes
  • A 4-wheel-drive vehicle with power to tare mass ratio (PMR) greater than 130 kilowatts per tonne is required by a country driver who has no practical alternative

If an exemption is granted, you must carry the exemption letter issued by Roads and Maritime while driving the vehicle.

You must notify Roads and Maritime within 14 days if you have changed any circumstances which affect your exemption, including if you no longer require the exemption, or if the exemption letter needs replacing. A further fee may apply.

Need help?

For guidance about which vehicles you can and cannot drive, enter a vehicle's details into the P1/P2 vehicle search.

For more information, please see the Frequently asked questions, or contact us. You can also read the announcement by the Minister for Roads and Freight.

Definitions

See Prohibited vehicles - definitions for detailed information and definitions of terms related to prohibited vehicles.

Upgrading to a heavy vehicle licence

If you hold a P2 licence, you can upgrade to a heavy vehicle licence of classes LR, MR or HR. See Getting a heavy vehicle licence for more information.

Progressing to a full licence

Once you’ve held your P2 licence for at least 24 months, you can progress to the next licence stage and apply for a full driver licence.

If your licence is suspended

Any period that your P2 licence is suspended is not counted towards your full licence. P2 drivers who receive a suspension for unsafe driving behaviour must stay on their P2 licence for an extra 6 months for every suspension period, before you can apply for a full licence.

Court disqualification

If you’re disqualified from driving by a court while on your P2 licence, your licence will be cancelled immediately and permanently. In these circumstances, the time you’ve accumulated is forfeited. This means that when the disqualification period ends, you’ll have to apply for a new P2 licence and complete the 24 months again, before you can apply for a full licence.

Liquor Act offences

It’s an offence under section 129 of the Liquor Act 2007 to use false documents to gain access to licensed premises or to purchase alcohol. If you’re convicted of such an offence while holding a P2 licence, you’ll be required to hold your P2 licence for an additional 6 months, therefore 30 months in total.

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