Motorcycle Licensing Requirements in NY
Riding a motorcycle can be an ideal experience in scenic New York State. In fact, the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles has issued over 769,000 motorcycle licenses and endorsements and 21,300 motorcycle learner’s permits. New York has different licensing requirements for motorcycle operators to ensure they can operate safely.
After a motorcycle accident, the other road users involved in the crash may scrutinize your compliance with motorcycle licensing requirements in NY. Here is what you need to know about these requirements in New York, NY, and how Rosenbaum & Rosenbaum, P.C. can help you fight for fair compensation after a crash.
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How Our Personal Injury Attorneys Can Help After a Motorcycle Accident in New York, NY
Rosenbaum & Rosenbaum, P.C. has been assisting New York, New York, clients for over 40 years. Over our careers, our New York City motorcycle accident lawyers have recovered millions of dollars in financial compensation for injured clients.
If you suffer an injury, our personal injury lawyers can help you by providing:
- Legal advice about your rights and options for compensation
- Negotiation skills to try to settle your case quickly and fairly
- Decades of courtroom experience to present your case at trial if it does not settle
Motorcycle accidents can cause severe injuries even when you wear a motorcycle helmet. Contact Rosenbaum & Rosenbaum, P.C. for a free consultation to discuss how your injuries have affected your life and what we can do to help you recover compensation for them.
Why Does New York Require Motorcycle Licenses?
There were 5,340 motorcycle accidents in a recent year alone. Once a crash happens, motorcycle operators and passengers are 24 times more likely to die and four times more likely to get injured in motorcycle crashes than automobile occupants in car accidents.
Motorcycles have no passenger compartment to protect riders. In a crash, they can suffer crushing injuries from the initial impact with another vehicle. Worse yet, operators and passengers can get ejected from the motorcycle and suffer injuries — particularly head trauma and brain injuries — in a secondary impact with the road.
You might think that the risks associated with a motorcycle crash happen purely by chance. However, research suggests that experience and training can make a difference. Roughly 20% of motorcycle operators have no motorcycle license, but 40% of motorcycle fatalities are unlicensed.
In other words, unlicensed motorcyclists die at twice the rate as those with licenses. New York, like all states, realizes this fact. It has created a licensing system to ensure that licensed riders have the knowledge, experience, and skills to ride safely.
Requirements For a New York Motorcycle License
New York has two paths for obtaining a motorcycle license. Each has different requirements and qualifications.
Exchange an Out-of-State Motorcycle License
If you have a valid motorcycle license from another U.S. state or territory, New York will issue a motorcycle license to you without requiring you to pass any tests or courses.
To exchange your out-of-state motorcycle license for a New York motorcycle license, you must:
- Have proof of New York residency
- Pass a vision test
- Surrender an out-of-state license that is unexpired or expired less than six months ago
New York gives you 30 days to surrender your old license after you move to the state. You can exchange your license at any state DMV location.
Obtain a Motorcycle Learner’s Permit and License
New York uses a multi-stage motorcycle licensing process regardless of your age. To obtain a motorcycle license, you must first obtain a motorcycle learner’s permit by passing a written test and presenting proof of your age and New York residency.
This permit allows you to operate a motorcycle with a few conditions, including:
- Someone over 21 with a motorcycle license must supervise you
- Your supervisor must remain within one-quarter mile of you when you ride
- You cannot drive on a street within a park in New York City
Additionally, while riding with your learner’s permit, you cannot use certain routes.
These routes include:
- Robert F. Kennedy Bridge/Triborough Bridge
- Bronx-Whitestone Bridge
- Verrazano-Narrows Bridge
- Throgs Neck Bridge
- Henry Hudson Bridge
- Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge
- Cross Bay Veterans Memorial Bridge
- Hugh L. Carey Tunnel/Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel
- Queens-Midtown Tunnel
- Cross County, Hutchinson River, Saw Mill River, or Taconic State Parkways
The DMV recommends at least 30 hours of experience before you move to the next step. To obtain your motorcycle license or endorsement, you must either pass a road test or pass an approved motorcycle training course.
If you choose to take the motorcycle training course, you must be at least 16 years old and hold another class of driver’s license. You will take your certificate of completion to the New York DMV with your motorcycle permit and driver’s license to receive your motorcycle endorsement.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our New York Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
Motorcycle accidents can cause disabling injuries to the head, spine, and limbs. A qualified NYC motorcycle accident attorney can protect your rights after a crash and help you secure the compensation you need to cover your losses.