How To Get A Motorcycle License In New York

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Obtaining a motorcycle license is an important step for any aspiring rider. Not only does it allow you to legally operate a motorcycle on public roads, but it also demonstrates your commitment to safety and responsibility as a rider.

You may wonder, “How to get a motorcycle license in New York?”. In the state of New York, you must follow specific requirements and steps to get your motorcycle license.

Getting one starts with determining your eligibility and the age group you are in. You have to clear some tests and pay some fees. The process is not entirely straightforward.

In this article, I’ll cover the eligibility requirements and the steps you need to take to get your motorcycle learner’s permit and license.

Motorcycle License Requirements In New York

Learn everything you need to know about the process of getting a NY motorcycle license

Before you can receive a motorcycle license in New York, there are certain requirements you need to meet. This section will outline the conditions to get your license.

Knowing Your Age

One of the most important requirements for obtaining a motorcycle license is your age. In this subsection, I’ll discuss the age requirements and what you need to do according to the age group you fall into.

Age Under 18

If you are under 18 years old, you are still eligible to get a motorcycle license, but there are additional requirements you must meet.

Firstly, the minimum age is 16. To apply for a motorcycle license if you are under 18, you must be supervised by a guardian while getting your permit.

Your guardian must also sign an Online Permit Test Parent/Guardian Certification (MV-263), which can be found on the New York DMV website.

This form certifies that your guardian was present when his child was giving the online knowledge test and that he did not use any unfair means to answer.

Age 18 Above

If you are 18 years old or older, you can apply for a motorcycle license in New York without the supervision of a guardian. However, there is one condition that must be met.

The Online Permit Test Attestation should be signed. This must be done in front of a DMV official. This form certifies the same thing as the one designed for younger people that you took the test without any helping material.

Types Of Motorcycle Licenses

New York has two types of motorcycle licenses: class M and class MJ.

Type 1: Class M

A class M license allows you to operate a motorcycle. To be eligible for a class M license, you must be at least 18 years old.

Type 2: Class MJ

A class MJ license allows you to drive a motorcycle. For a class MJ license, you must be at least 16 years old and be supervised by a person, who is no less than 21 years old, while riding.

This license is only valid until the licensee turns 18. They must upgrade to a class M license to continue operating a motorcycle.

How To Apply For Your New York Motorcycle License

If you were aware of the above mentioned things, I apologize for keeping you waiting. Here is the process of applying for a motorcycle license in the state of New York.

Step 1. Get A Motorcycle Permit

You must first get a motorcycle permit to apply for a motorcycle license. Depending on your age, you will be eligible for either a class MJ permit (for those 16-17 years old) or a class M permit (for those 18 years and older).

To get a motorcycle permit, you must pass a written test covering traffic laws and motorcycle functions. The details of it are discussed in the next section.

In addition to passing the written test, you must bring proof of your identity, age, and residence when applying for a motorcycle permit. This can include documents such as a driver’s license, birth certificate, and utility bill.

Step 2: Testing For Your Motorcycle License

You must complete additional testing to receive a motorcycle license. You will need to pass two tests: the motorcycle written test and the motorcycle road test.

1. Motorcycle Written Test

  • The motorcycle written test is taken at the same time as when you apply for your permit. It includes basic motorcycle operation and traffic laws.
  • You must score a minimum of 80% overall, 50% on the road signs section, and 60% on the motorcycle section to pass.
  • The test can be taken online or in a DMV office, which will take around 40 minutes to complete.
  • Make sure to study hard for it, as you will have to wait six months before reapplying and giving the test again.

2. Motorcycle Road Test

  • To pass this test, you must be able to safely operate a motorcycle.
  • You will be required to bring your motorcycle for the road test, and you must have a valid motorcycle permit to take the test.
  • If you do not have a driver’s license, you will need to complete a Driver’s Education course before you are eligible to take the motorcycle road test.
  • If not, you will not be able to give the road test.
  • The test will need to be scheduled. You cannot visit the DMV office at any time to give it. So, make sure to set an appointment with the NY DMV office.

Step 3: Paying Required Fees

You will need to pay several fees to get your license. The total cost of the license will depend on various factors, including your age, the type of license you are applying for, and whether you are applying for a new license or renewing an existing one.

The fee for a new motorcycle license in New York typically ranges from $21 to $120. This fee will be calculated when you apply for the license and is based on the specific requirements that apply to you.

Apart from the license fee, there will also be a written test fee of $10 and a road test fee of $12.50. These fees are separate from the license fee.

Step 4: Wait For Your License

After you have completed the necessary testing and paid the required fees, you will need to wait for your motorcycle license to be issued. In most cases, it will take approximately two weeks for your license to arrive in the mail.

During this time, you will be issued a temporary license, which will allow you to legally operate a motorcycle while you wait for your permanent license to arrive.

Ways To Get A Motorcycle Endorsement I NY

The process of getting an endorsement is the same as getting a license. If you were looking for this section, let me sum up the process for you.

Step1: Provision Of Documents

You will need to provide certain documents when applying for a motorcycle endorsement in New York. These documents may include the following:

  • Proof of identity. A driver’s license will suffice as it is mandatory to bring it in for this procedure anyway.
  • Proof of residence, such as a utility bill or bank statement.

Step 2: Pass A Motorcycle Knowledge Test

A knowledge test will be conducted, so you can get your motorcycle permit. It is the same test that has to be taken by individuals applying for a separate motorcycle license. This means that the requirements for passing are also the same.

Step 3: Take A Road Test

In order to get the endorsement added, there are two possible options for you. You could either complete a motorcycle safety course, which will allow you to skip the road test, or give the test. The latter is quicker and, if you are confident in your skills, you should opt for it.

Step 4: Wait For Your Driver’s License

After the process is complete, you need to wait for your newly amended driver’s license. In the meanwhile, you will get a temporary license, so you shouldn’t have any issues while traveling on the road.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: How Long Will It Take To Get A Motorcycle License In New York?

It typically takes about two weeks to get your license after finalizing the application process.

If it takes longer than that, then you should contact the DMV office and get a status update. It is unlikely that your license got lost during transit, but it is not completely out of the question.

Q2: How Much Will It Cost To Get A Motorcycle License In New York?

The cost of the license can start from $21 and can reach up to $120. There are many factors at play here, so you can never know until you apply.

In addition to the license fee, you will also need to pay a test fee of $10 for the written part. The road test fee is $12.50. Driver’s Education courses, if taken, have a separate cost.

Q3: Should I Have A License To Ride A Motorcycle In New York?

Yes, it is required by law to have a valid motorcycle license in order to lawfully operate a motorcycle in New York.

This applies to people of all age groups, regardless of whether they are adults or not. Failing to have a valid motorcycle license can result in fines and legal action carried against you.

You may also be interested in my article: New York Motorcycle Helmet Laws


While getting a motorcycle license requires some time and effort, it is an important step to ensure that you are prepared and capable of safely operating a motorcycle on the road.

By following the steps outlined in this article and meeting all of the necessary requirements, you can obtain your motorcycle license.

Hopefully, the process will be easier for you, after completely reading through this article.

You can visit this page any time to get clarification on any part you are confused about, so you don’t have to ask the question, “How to get a motorcycle license in New York?”.

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