colorado driver information
Welcome to your ultimate resource for Colorado driving. Breeze through the laws and facts that any Centennial State motorist should know.
Driving in Colorado
Number of licensed drivers: 3,705,000
Registered vehicles: 1,429,000
Licensing and registration authority: Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV)
Colorado driving record points
Colorado follows a penalty point system for drivers convicted of violations. Points range from one (for speeding 5-9 mph over the limit) to 12 (for drag racing or leaving the scene of an accident).
Your license may be suspended if you accumulate a certain number of points based on your age group. For example, if you're 21 or older, you can lose your drivers license if you accumulate 12 points in a year. If you're 18-20, your license can be suspended after 9 points.
DUIs, DWAIs, and your driving record
If you're caught driving with a BAC of 0.08 percent or higher, you will be charged with a DUI. Penalties for a first conviction include a 9-month license suspension. A BAC of 0.05 but below 0.08 can result in a DWAI (Driving While Ability Impaired). Penalties for a DWAI conviction can include 8 points on your driving record.
Reporting accidents in Colorado
It's always a good idea to call police to the scene of an accident. The police will send the proper paperwork to the DMV, which will contact you if anything else is needed on your end. If the police aren't called to the scene, you can file your own accident report online.
Drivers in the military
If you're a Colorado resident currently serving in the military and you're out of state when your drivers license expires, you can apply for a military extension. This will give you 3 extra years to renew your license. To qualify for an extension, you can't have any unpaid tickets on your driving record.
Moving to Colorado
Before applying for your new Colorado drivers license, you must become a resident. To do this you have to live in Colorado for 90 days straight, own or operate a Colorado business, or work in Colorado. Once you're a Colorado resident, you have 30 days to get your Colorado license and 90 days to register your car with the DMV.
Stolen cars in Colorado
According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), 7,593 cars were stolen from the Denver area (combined with Aurora and Broomfield) in 2011. Denver has the 70th-highest theft rate in the nation.
The top 10 most stolen cars in Colorado were:
- 1995 Honda Accord
- 1998 Honda Civic
- 1999 Ford Pickup (full size)
- 1999 Chevrolet Pickup (full size)
- 2000 Jeep Cherokee
- 1995 Acura Integra
- 2001 Dodge Pickup (full-size)
- 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee
- 1991 Toyota Camry
- 1995 Subaru Legacy
Comprehensive coverage can offer financial protection in case your car's stolen.
Young drivers in Colorado
Drivers who are under 17 will go through the stages of Colorado's graduated licensing program.
- Required classroom instruction hours: 30 plus a 4-hour awareness course
- Required driving hours: 6
- Minimum permit age: 15 years old
- Minimum holding period: 12 months
- Minimum intermediate license age: 16 years old
- Parent/guardian practice hours: 50 daytime; 10 nighttime
- Nighttime restrictions: midnight–5 a.m.
- Passenger restrictions: No passengers under 21 for first 6 months of license; only one passenger under 21 is permitted during the following 6 months
- Minimum age restrictions lifted: 17 years old
Minors and underage drinking
Drivers under 21 who are convicted of a DUI or DWAI will lose their driving privileges for a year.
Our guide to Colorado car insurance
Find out about Colorado's car insurance regulations and the Esurance perks and options available in your state.
Head here for official guidance on insurance requirements, getting a license, and registering a car.
Colorado Department of Transportation
Before hitting the road, head here for up-to-the-minute construction and weather updates.