If you’re trying to get a driver’s license in New Jersey but you have failed your road test, it could take a while before you will have the opportunity to get re-tested.

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission continues to experience delays for re-taking the test, but they are not nearly as bad as some people claim they are, according to MVC spokesman William Connolly.

Some New Jersey parents have complained to New Jersey 101.5 they are being forced to wait three months to get a re-test appointment for their teenager but Connolly said the longest wait times, which are in North Jersey, are only a couple of weeks.

“If you live in the Central part of the state or the South you’re going to see much less of a wait, so it’s largely an issue that confined to the North,” he said.

The MVC has seen a significant increase in demand for driver’s licenses over the past few years because more people are driving after the pandemic and people who've moved into the state from urban areas are driving for the first time, Connolly said.

Catherine Yeulet
Catherine Yeulet

Only a few days

He said the time it takes to get an appointment for a re-test in Central and South Jersey is usually only a matter of a few days but “if you’re trying to go to Lodi or Wayne or Randolph, you’re going to face a couple of weeks of a wait if you have to re-test."

Earlier this summer, the MVC reported some applicants were waiting 25 days in North Jersey for a re-test opportunity.

Best way to avoid re-testing

Connolly stressed the best way to avoid road re-test appointment delays is to pass the test in the first place.

“Make sure you do your practice, make sure you study your driver manual, the driver manual has a list of what you are going to be tested on, you’re going to be tested on driving in reverse, you can be tested on following other vehicles,” he said.

“Come to the test prepared because we definitely want applicants to succeed, we want applicants to pass.”

Road rage (male)

More re-testing coming soon

He noted the MVC is working on a plan to be able to offer more re-testing opportunities.

"In September we’re going to be adding some off-site capacities, so these are sites that are not our normal 15 road sites,” said Connolly.

He said another improvement that’s coming next month is a computer system upgrade. He explained this will give the MVC improved flexibility in how appointments are managed.

Learn how to parallel park

MVC safety examiners consider several different skills in determining whether someone passes or fails the test, but parallel parking is the skill most people seem to have the most difficulty with.

“We have high standards for licensing, and that’s to keep our roads safe, you have to know the rules of the road and you have to know how to safely operate a vehicle in New Jersey," Connolly said.

You can re-take the road test at any one of 15 agency offices around the state, and MVC staff are happy to offer guidance about the quickest way to get re-tested, but by law you have to wait 14 days before you are able to re-test.

Angry man driving a car.

He said in the grand scheme of things the number of people who wind up failing the road test is relatively small.

“We have about 25% of our road test applicants fail when they go through, 1 out of 4 has to come back into the system and re-test."

David Matthau is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at david.matthau@townsquaremedia.com

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