Georgia’s Licensing Requirements for Motorcycles
Motorcycles offer fun, freedom and fuel efficiency to Georgia riders, but there’s no denying they also come with risks. That’s partly why Georgia has different licensing requirements for motorcycles and other forms of motorized bikes than it does for cars, trucks and SUVs. In Georgia, you’ll need a Class M license or Class M instructional permit to drive a motorcycle, scooter or motorbike with an engine above a certain size. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Georgia Department of Driver Services has switched to appointment-only in-person services. You can set up in-person services through their site.
If you’re thinking of becoming a licensed motorcyclist, here’s what you’ll need to know to obtain your Class M license or permit.
The Motorcycle Safety Program Course
On-the-bike experience combined with instruction is one of the best ways to train safe drivers. Riding a motorcycle requires the same understanding of traffic laws and basic safety as driving a car does. But, unlike driving a car, a motorcyclist must also learn how to handle the bike.
In Georgia, riders have the option of taking a Motorcycle Safety Program Course. The basic course, which is meant for beginners, costs $250 for in-state riders and involves 5 hours of classroom work and 10 hours of riding with an instructor present. Because it’s assumed that you’re just starting out, motorcycles and helmets are provided.
To graduate from the course, riders must:
- Attend all sessions
- Arrive on time
- Receive at least an 80 on the written test
After graduating, riders earn a 90-day License Test Waiver. This means they will not have to perform the written or the riding portions of the Class M application.
Alternatively, a rider may choose not to take the course and instead take the on-cycle skills test and pass a knowledge test at a Department of Driver Services Customer Service Center. Note that if you do choose this route, you’ll have to take the test on your own motorcycle.
Either way, applicants will also be expected to pass a vision test and provide identification documents.
Beginning and Continuing Your Motorcycle Training
Aside from offering a solid safety foundation for new riders, completing the Motorcycle Safety Program Course can also earn motorcyclists an insurance discount. For many experienced riders, training doesn’t end after licensing. Georgia also offers advanced courses, teaching hazard awareness and crash avoidance skills. All classes, whether for new riders or those who are more experienced, are taught by rider coaches who are certified nationally and at the state level.
In Georgia, individuals as young as 16 may apply for a Motorcycle Instructional Permit. The permit requires certified driver education training called for by Joshua’s Law. Riders under 18 must also have a parent, guardian or authorized training instructor sign on. This individual will then have the right to request the license be revoked at any point before the holder turns 18.
Note that the state’s COVID-19 response is constantly changing, including in the area of driver services. Before you plan to pursue motorcycle licensing, be sure that the services you’ll need are available.
Macon Motorcycle Crash Lawyer
If you have been injured in a motorcycle crash, you need a lawyer with experience handling motorcycle cases. The Macon personal injury attorneys at Buzzell, Welsh & Hill will help ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us for a free consultation today.