California Motorcycle Laws • Crowell Law Offices
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California Motorcycle Laws

The experienced Sacramento motorcycle accident lawyers at the Crowell Law Offices want both aspiring and established riders everywhere to know the legalities surrounding motorcycling in California so they can stay safe and ride without harassment from law enforcement. If you have any questions regarding motorcycle law or your rights after an accident, call us today at (916) 303-2800.


Learning to Ride

All prospective motorcyclists need to get a learner’s permit from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Individuals under 18 must possess and practice riding with the permit for a minimum of six months before qualifying for a motorcycle license. Those 18 and over have no specified practice period that needs to be fulfilled. Riders with learner’s permits cannot ride at night or on the freeway. They are also not allowed to carry passengers.


Motorcycle License Tests

In order to attain a motorcycle license, riders under 21 must first pass a California Motorcyclist Safety Program training course. Riders over 21 have the option of completing a motorcycle rider training course or scheduling a motorcycle driving test.


Riding in from Out-of-State?

California accepts motorcycle endorsement from other states; however, the Golden State does not accept RiderEd completion cards from other states. A rider must have insurance; otherwise, his or her driver’s license may be suspended for a year. Helmets are required under California Vehicle Code Section 27803. Periodic safety inspections are also required by law. Neither eye nor ear protection is required.


The Motorcycle must Follow Laws Too

Under California law, motorcycles must have turn signals, a muffler, at least one mirror and a maximum sound level of 80dba at a distance of 50 ft. The handlebar height must not exceed six inches above the rider’s shoulders. Riders who take on passengers must have a passenger seat and footrest. There is no age restriction regarding passengers.


A Few More Laws

Furthermore, lane splitting is authorized per California Highway Patrol (CHP). There are no statutes that refer to bikers operating two abreast in the same lane, so currently it is permitted. Motorcyclists must use their headlight in the daytime if their vehicle was manufactured during or after 1978. Finally, motorcyclists are covered under California lemon laws, according to California Civil Code 1793.22(9)(e)(2).


After a Northern California Motorcycle Crash

If you are a law-abiding rider who has been injured in a northern California motorcycle accident that was caused by the negligence of another motorist, you may be entitled to compensation for all related damages. At Crowell Law Offices, we know that accident injuries can potentially devastate lives. We believe all riders have the right to share the road without fear of serious injury or death. Contact us today for your accident injury case, and we will do our best to ensure you get what you need for your recovery.


Additional Motorcycle Information