Junior operator violations

Learn about the violations and penalties associated with drivers between the age of 16½ and 18.

Table of Contents

Overview

Junior operators are drivers between the age of 16½ and 18.  As a junior operator, you are subject to all driver's license suspensions. The Junior Operator Law and the Safe Driver Law impose penalties for certain violations issued to junior operators. The purpose of the Junior Operator Law is to reduce teen driver crash rates and deaths.  You must serve any imposed suspension to completion even if you reach the age of 18 before the period ends.  All junior operator suspensions are mandatory suspensions by law.  Junior operators are not eligible for hardship licenses.

Reinstatement requirements vary based between a Junior Operator's License (JOL) and a learner's permit.

Depending on the violation, junior operators may need to:

Additional Resources

Learner's permit holders

A Junior Operator's permit is subject to increased penalties for violation of certain laws and license restrictions. If you accept responsibility for, or are found responsible for, any of the restrictions or violations below prior to your 18th birthday, the RMV will suspend or revoke your permit. To reinstate your permit, you will need to serve the suspension period and fulfill any other reinstatement requirements.

Convictions, suspension periods, and reinstatement requirements

Suspension periods and reinstatement requirements vary depending on the violation and number of convictions you earn while you have a learner's permit. The following table lists the suspension periods and reinstatement requirements for permit holders. All fees are subject to change.

Unaccompanied by licensed driver

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 8B

1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
60 day suspension - $100 reinstatement - Reapply for Permit 180 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course - Reapply for Permit 1 year suspension - $100 reinstatement - Reapply for Permit
1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
Drag-racing

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 17B

1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
1 year suspension - $500 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Reapply for Permit 3 year suspension - $1000 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Reapply for Permit 3 year suspension - $1000 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Reapply for Permit
1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense

* Junior Operators are only required to complete the SCARR course one time

Time restriction violation: 12am-5am

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Sections 10 and 8B

1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
60 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Reapply for Permit 180 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course - Reapply for Permit 1 year suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Reapply for Permit
1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
Speeding

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Sections 17, 17A, and 18

1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
90 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Reapply for Permit 1 year suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Reapply for Permit 1 year suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Reapply for Permit
1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
Conviction for the use of a mobile electronic device (text or phone)

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 8M

1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
60 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course - Reapply for Permit - $100 Fine 180 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - $250 Fine 1 year suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - $500 Fine
1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
Negligent operation and injury from mobile phone use

Governing Law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 24(2)(a)

1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
$500 reinstatement fee $500 reinstatement fee - Reapply for Permit $500 reinstatement fee - Reapply for Permit
1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
Additional suspension for Junior Operators under the age of 18

In addition to any other penalty required by the Massachusetts General Laws specific to each violation, MGL Chapter 90 Section 24P(b) requires that any junior operator under the age of 18 convicted of the following violations must receive a 180-day suspension for a first offense, and a one-year suspension for any additional ones: 

  • Operating to endanger
  • Reckless/Negligent operation
  • Leaving the scene of an accident
  • Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle
  • Operating a motor vehicle on a bet or wager, or to set a record

This is in addition to any other suspension required by law. 

Driver's license holders

A JOL is subject to increased penalties for violation of certain laws and driver's license restrictions. If you accept responsibility for, or are found responsible for, any of the below restrictions or violations issued before your 18th birthday, the RMV will suspend or revoke your JOL. If you would like to reinstate your JOL, you will need to serve the suspension period and fulfill any other reinstatement requirements.

Convictions, suspension periods, and reinstatement requirements

Suspension periods and reinstatement requirements vary by the type of violation and number of convictions you earn while holding a JOL. The following tables list the suspension periods and reinstatement requirements for JOL holders. Any suspension or revocation that occurs during the 6 month passenger restriction period will extend the length of the restriction period. A junior operator under the age of 18 convicted of a passenger restriction violation must serve this suspension or revocation, even if you have since turned 18.

Passenger restriction

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 8 & 10

1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
60 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee 180 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course 1 year suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course - Full Exam**
1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
Time restriction violation: 12:30am-5am

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 8 & 10

1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
60 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee 180 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course 1 year suspension - $100 reinstatement fee -  Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course - Full Exam**
1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
Speeding

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 17, 17A & 18

1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
90 day suspension - $500 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Full Exam** 1 year suspension - $500 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Full Exam** 1 year suspension - $500 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Full Exam**
1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
Drag-racing

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 17B

1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
1 year suspension - $500 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Full Exam** 3 year suspension - $500 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Full Exam** 3 year suspension - $500 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course & SCARR* - Full Exam**
1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
Operating to endanger/recklessly or negligent

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 24

1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
180 day suspension - $500 Reinstatement fee 1 year suspension - $500 Reinstatement fee - Full exam** 1 year suspension - $500Reinstatement fee - Full exam**
1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
Conviction for the use of a mobile electronic device (text or phone)

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 8M

1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
180 day suspension - $100 reinstatement fee - Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course - Full Exam** 1 year suspension - $100 Reinstatement fee 1 year suspension - $100 Reinstatement fee
1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
Negligent operation and injury from mobile phone use

Governing law: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 24(2)(a)

1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
180 day suspension - $500 Reinstatement fee 1 year suspension - $500 Reinstatement fee - Full Exam** 1 year suspension - $500 Reinstatement fee - Full Exam**
1st Offense 2nd Offense Subsequent Offense
Additional suspension for Junior Operators under the age of 18

In addition to any other penalty required by the Massachusetts General Laws specific to each violation, MGL Chapter 90 Section 24P(b) requires that any junior operator under the age of 18 convicted of the following violations must receive a 180-day suspension for a first offense, and a one-year suspension for any additional ones:

  • Operating to endanger
  • Reckless/Negligent operation
  • Leaving the scene of an accident
  • Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle
  • Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle

This is in addition to any other suspension required by law. The additional suspension only applies to a junior operator in cases where you did not receive an additional suspension for failing or refusing a breath test.

* Junior operators are only required to complete the SCARR course one time.

** If you are required to take a full exam, you will need to take both the learner's permit test and a road test.

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