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Motorcycle Street Legal Requirements

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Taking care of a task for your license or motorcycle? Be prepared to satisfy any motorcycle insurance requirements.

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Street legal requirements are laws set by each state that dictate exactly which equipment is required for a vehicle to legally be operated on public roadways.

Each state’s requirements will vary slightly, you can find some state-specific details on our registration and title guides or contact your local DMV for more information.

However, the information on this page is going to have your bike street legal in the majority of states.

First, in order to operate, register and title a motorcycle on public roadways, you’ll need:

  • A proper motorcycle endorsement.
  • A bike with a VIN/title that is not listed as “Not Intended or Permitted for Highway Use.”
  • A current insurance policy.
  • Current inspection stickers, in some states.

For street legal equipment, your motorcycle should have:

  • An audible horn.
  • Front and rear brakes.
  • Turn signals.
  • Headlight.
  • Tail light.
  • Brake light.
  • DOT tires.
  • At least 1 sideview mirror.
  • Proper exhaust.
  • Speedometer and odometer.
  • Fenders.
  • Footrests.
  • Sidestand.
  • License plate mount.

If you have an older motorcycle, there are some caveats to the requirements above.

If your motorcycle was not originally manufactured or equipped with certain required street legal equipment, you will usually be exempt from the requirement. This applies to older bikes that were produced before certain federal requirements were in place.

If your motorcycle project is missing street legal equipment, check out some of our recommendations for the best aftermarket horns and motorcycle mirrors.

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