Do You Need a Motorcycle License in Michigan?

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In Michigan, residents do not need to obtain a separate license in order to ride a motorcycle. However, they must have a CY endorsement on their driver’s license in order to ride legally.
Here’s how you get it:

  1. Meet all qualification requirements: To receive a CY endorsement, you must be a U.S. citizen or residing lawfully within the United States. You must also be a Michigan resident.
  2. Get a learner’s permit: Anyone over age 16 or with a Michigan driver’s license can request a temporary permit for motorcycle riding privileges. To receive the full endorsement, you must pass a knowledge and road skills test or participate in the Michigan Rider Education Program through the Secretary of State’s office to waive the required skills test. Minors must complete a Basic Rider Course (BRC) or a Returning Rider Basic Rider Course (RRBRC) and show proof of enrollment before receiving their permit.
  3. Pass vision test: Like any driver’s test, motorcyclists must also pass a vision screening at a DMV branch location before receiving their endorsement.
  4. Submit required documentation and fees to the Secretary of State: In addition to providing proof of completion of a rider safety course or passing a road skills test, you must provide several forms of documentation to the Secretary of State before receiving your CY endorsement, including:
    • Proof of Social Security Number (SSN)
    • Proof of legal presence in the United States, such as a birth certificate, U.S. passport, Michigan driver’s license, or permanent residency card
    • Proof of identity, with a state-issued driver’s license, ID card, U.S. marriage license, U.S. court order for a name change, or military ID card
    • Two forms of residency, such as a utility bill, credit card bill, or bank statement

Tips to Avoid Motorcycle Accidents in Michigan

You’ve gotten your CY endorsement. Now it’s important to stay safe on your bike. Here are some pointers:

  • Wear a helmet: Michigan law gives riders the option to choose whether to wear a motorcycle helmet. To legally not wear a helmet, you must be at least 21-years-old, carry at least $20,000 in first-party medical benefits, and have had your CY endorsement for at least two years or passed an approved safety course. There are additional requirements that passengers must meet before riding helmet-free.
  • Stay visible: Motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles, which makes them harder to spot in traffic. Do your part to remain visible by keeping a safe distance, staying out of blind spots, and making sure your headlights and taillights are working properly.
  • Wear safety gear: Motorcyclists don’t have the luxury of a steel frame and airbags to protect them if an accident happens. In addition to a DOT-approved helmet, wear shatterproof goggles, a face shield, or a windshield to protect your face and eyes from injury. Heavy-duty riding pants, gloves, jackets, and boots can also help avoid severe road rash and scarring if a wreck occurs.
  • Don’t drink and ride: Just like driving cars, riding a motorcycle while impaired can be a deadly choice.

Contact a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer If You’ve Been Hurt

If you or a loved one was hurt in a motorcycle crash in Michigan, legal compensation may be possible to help you on the road to recovery. Learn your legal options by speaking with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer at Christensen Law today for a free consultation.

Call or contact us now.