Vermont Driving Laws for Seniors and Older Drivers

Learn about driving provisions and special programs focused on keeping both Vermont's older drivers and roadways safe.

Updated By , Attorney

While the myriad rules and regulations enforced by the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) apply to drivers of all ages and stages, the state has a specific procedure used most often to prevent older drivers from becoming unsafe.

Specifically, Vermont accepts requests from doctors, family members, and others for the DMV to conduct unsafe driver investigations.

License Renewal Rules for Older Drivers in Vermont

Vermont launched a system to renew driver's licenses online in April 2020. The system only allows one renewal and two replacements within a 180-day time period.

Time limits: All drivers must renew their licenses every four years, unless the license specifies a shorter period.

Vision test: May be required at renewal.

Written test: May be required at the discretion of DMV personnel.

Road test: May be required at the discretion of DMV personnel.

Possible License Restrictions

The DMV can place restrictions or conditions on a person's driver's license. The most common restriction for older drivers is to require glasses or corrective contact lenses.

In Vermont, other common requirements the DMV may impose on older drivers include driving only vehicles with specified equipment such as special brakes, hand controls, or other adaptive devices.

How to Request an Unsafe Driver Investigation in Vermont

The Vermont DMV will accept information from family members, doctors, and public safety officers who are concerned that a person may have a physical or mental condition causing him or her to become unsafe behind the wheel.

Those concerned may file a written request to have the driver re-examined, which must include:

  • the driver's name
  • the driver's date of birth
  • the driver's address
  • the requester's name and contact information—including mailing address and phone number
  • an explanation of the requester's relationship to the driver, and
  • the specific reasons the driver should be re-examined—including any personal observations of unsafe driving.

The request should be mailed to the DMV Commissioner's Office.

How to Get a License Reinstated

For information on how to get back a license that has been suspended or revoked in Vermont, contact one of the DMV offices located throughout the state.

How to Get Parking Placards or License Plates for a Disabled Driver

Disabled person parking placards and license plates can be issued to drivers with impaired mobility if a licensed medical practitioner certifies the condition.

The placards and plates are available for those who:

  • are blind
  • cannot walk 200 feet without stopping to rest
  • cannot walk without the use of another person or an assistive device
  • have severe lung disease
  • use portable oxygen
  • have a severe cardiac condition, or
  • are severely limited in the ability to walk due to an arthritic, neurological, or orthopedic condition.

To obtain a disabled placard or plate:

Mail the original application and report to the Vermont DMV; 120 State Street; Montpelier, VT 05603.

Learn More About Vermont Driving Rules for Seniors

The DMV website has a wealth of information for Vermont drivers, including a special page for "Mature Drivers," detailing warning signs of unsafe driving and listing local resources targeted to older drivers. Also of interest is the "Driver's Manual," which includes explanations of licensing drivers and registering vehicles, as well as safe driving tips and summaries of local rules of the road.

Where to Find a Lawyer for Help

You can use Nolo's Lawyer Directory to find a local lawyer experienced in representing older people who need help with auto accidents or traffic tickets in Vermont.

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