You have several pathways for obtaining a motorcycle license in Georgia, including taking a Motorcycle Safety Program Course. By taking steps to get a motorcycle license, you can build the necessary knowledge and skill to operate the vehicle.
Like any person operating a motor vehicle, having a proper license is a legal requirement. For riders who choose to drive without a license, this puts the rider in danger and risks many legal consequences.
Obtaining a Class M License in Georgia
Georgia requires that all riders have a motorcycle license, per the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS). This license is called a Class M license. Georgia is also one of the few states that offer riders a Motorcycle Instructional Permit; or a Class MP Permit.
A motorcycle license is required for operating any motorcycle or motor-driven cycle, not including a tractor or moped. You will need a motorcycle license in Georgia if you intend to drive any of the following vehicles:
- Motor tricycles
- Mini-bikes with engine size 51cc or higher
The core requirements for obtaining a Class M license are:
- You must be at least 17 years old.
- You must pass a motorcycle skills test.
In addition, you should also expect to:
- Present several forms of identifying documentation
- Pass a vision test and a motorcycle knowledge test
- Pay a license fee
You’ll want to schedule a road test appointment through the Georgia DDS and prepare your documentation before the test.
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Georgia Motorcycle Safety Program (GMSP)
To prepare to pass the motorcycle skills test, you can enroll in a Motorcycle Safety Program Course. This will allow you to receive training in motorcycle skills before you apply for a license.
The Georgia DDS offers rider education programs that cater to every rider level. These programs help improve motorcyclists’ knowledge of Georgia highway safety, as well as increase their skills in motorcycle operation and crash avoidance. The rider training programs are created by The Motorcycle Safety Foundation® (MSF), a national not-for-profit organization that develops motorcycle education and training systems and promotes motorcycle awareness and safety.
Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) and Rider Education
The Georgia Motorcycle Safety Program provides three options for training through the MSF. Two of them provide a path to obtaining a Class M License in Georgia. Each program includes both classroom instruction and on-cycle training in a controlled environment off the street.
Basic Riders Course (BRC) for New Riders
The Basic Rider Course gives motorcyclists 15 hours of formal classroom training and rider instruction. A motorcycle knowledge test and skills evaluation conclude the program.
Georgia provides a 90-day license waiver for those students age 17 or older who pass the basic motorcycle course. The Georgia DDS will waive the written and riding test portion of your Georgia motorcycle application. They would do so for 90 days following your date of graduation from the course. During that time, the application paperwork is the only thing you have to complete.
If you choose to seek out this training, the course administrators will provide you with a motorcycle and helmet during the course. The fee for training is $250. Even better, many insurance companies will give motorcycle riders who have completed a formal riding education program a discount on their insurance.
Basic Riders Course 2 (BRC2)
The Basic Riders Course 2 is designed for motorcycle riders who already have basic skills and want to either refresh their knowledge or get the 90-day Motorcycle License Test Waiver. The course allows motorcyclists to practice their skills and update their safety knowledge. During this training, riders use their own motorcycles. The enrollment fee is $100.
Neither the motorcycle basic riders course nor the basic riders course 2 waive the fees or vision tests for obtaining an M license.
Drivers Under 18 Years Old
Students under 18 who complete the course must turn 17 before the 90-day waiver ends if they want to get their motorcycle license.
They must also meet the Joshua Law requirements for teen driver education to get a license in Georgia.
Apply for a License Without Taking the Safety Program
If you already own a motorcycle and believe you can pass the skills test without additional training, you have the option to do so. The Georgia DDS Customer Service Center allows you to apply directly at the center.
This process will involve taking a knowledge test and a skills test. You could also be subject to a vision test.
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Other Steps That Motorcyclists Can Take for Their Safety
Learning to operate a motorcycle correctly is imperative to your safety. However, this is only the beginning of what you can do to protect your safety on the roads.
You may also want to consider taking the following steps:
- Always wear a helmet: Wearing a helmet as a motorcyclist is mandated by Georgia law, per O.C.G.A. § 40-6-315. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also notes that wearing a helmet is the most effective way to prevent fatalities among motorcyclists.
- Drive sober: According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), 34% of motorcyclist fatalities were attributed to the motorcyclist’s alcohol use. By driving sober, you can take steps to ensure that you’re on the road with your full mental and physical capabilities intact.
- Understand your rights: You should be able to expect a certain level of care from other drivers on the roads. If you are in an accident with someone who didn’t look twice before turning into your lane, for instance, we could help.
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If You Were in a Motorcycle Accident Without a License in Georgia
For those who do find themselves without a license during an accident, you could face fines and uncertainty about how to seek the compensation you need. We may be able to help you understand your options.
Shared Fault Can Affect Your Compensation in a Georgia Motorcycle Accident
In Georgia, the amount of compensation you may receive depends on who is at fault in a motorcycle accident and how much percentage of the fault those parties share. You should know that you can seek compensation even if you shared a certain amount of fault for the accident. You could recover damages as long as you are deemed less than 50% responsible for the crash.
Of course, successfully seeking compensation in a motorcycle accident claim is another matter—especially if you were cited for not wearing a helmet. The good news is that you can get a free consultation with our team. We can tell you how we may be able to help you proceed.
We Can Help You Seek Damages If Negligence Leads to an Accident
If you were in a motorcycle accident someone else caused, we could help you seek the compensation you may need to recover.
The compensation you may be able to claim includes both economic and non-economic damages, such as:
- Emergency medical care (EMTs and ambulance rides at and from the scene of the motorcycle crash)
- Ongoing medical treatment
- Wage or other income loss
- Diminished ability to earn
- Motorcycle repair or replacement costs
- Diminished value of motorcycle after repair
- Required household services resulting from the accident
- Physical therapy
- Emotional distress (fear of riding or driving, depression, anxiety, etc.)
- Physical pain
- Burns, scars, disfigurement
- Spinal injury
- Traumatic brain injury
- Lost quality of life
There are multiple types of damages you may be able to seek in a claim against the at-fault driver. A motorcycle accident lawyer at our firm serving Georgia can help you assess the value of your injuries and losses.
How Our Law Firm Can Help You Seek Compensation
Our team can help you file an insurance claim with the negligent party and seek fair compensation for your injuries.
- Gather evidence of negligence and prove liability
- Show the extent of your injuries and losses
- Negotiate with an insurance company on your behalf
- Keep you updated on the progress of your case
- Advise you about accepting settlement offers
- Seek awards for you through a court trial, if necessary
Motorcycle riders can frequently face automatic blame for an accident—even if they were not at fault. We can work to show the facts of your case and fight for your interests from start to finish in an injury case.
Call Kaine Law After Your Motorcycle Accident
Learning how to get a motorcycle license in Georgia will keep you in compliance with the law and provide safety awareness, but it can’t protect you from other people’s negligent driving. When someone else causes your accident and injuries, we can help you pursue the recovery you may deserve. We have decades of experience and understand how to help victims of motorcycle accidents.
Call someone from our team today to learn more about how one of our motorcycle accident lawyers could help you with your case. Reach out to us today.