How to Register a Motorcycle

Senior citizens in the United States should keep several aspects of the motorcycle registration process in mind when titling a vehicle in their select states. Drivers who register motorcycle titles in the U.S. may feel that the registration process is quite similar to the process for registering other vehicles. This is because the registration process is mostly standardized across the U.S., and shares many requirements with that of a car or truck registration. However, there are several factors to consider when registering motorcycle titles on vehicles that have been purchased from either a dealership or a private seller, or those being registered for the first time or from out-of-state. Below, review more information each of these circumstances related to registering a motorcycle as a senior citizen.

Learn Senior Motorcycle Registration Requirements

The process for how to register motorcycle titles in the United States is dependent on the state in which a registrant is completing the application. Generally, motorcycle registrations will require the senior applicants to first provide Class M licenses that are valid within their states of residence. Seniors who are already licensed in the state in which they wish to register a bike will require the following information alongside their current licenses:

  • Valid Photo ID – To fulfill this motorcycle registration requirement, licensed seniors may use their Class M licenses. However, a standard car and truck drivers license will also work, along with a state photo identification card or a photo-exempt card/drivers license. Other documentation may be acceptable depending on the state.
  • Proof of Motorcycle Insurance – Proof of insurance is required when registering a motorcycle in the United States. Seniors may provide any document from an insurance company that shows both an effective date and an expiration date.
  • Title of Ownership – To register a motorcycle, riders must provide proof of ownership of the vehicle being registered. Senior registrants who are leasing a vehicle will need to contact their lienholders to obtain this information.
  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Certification – A motorcycle registration can only be completed with a notarized tracing, a notarized photograph or a mechanic’s certification to validate the title of ownership.
  • Payment of Motorcycle Registration Fees & Sales Tax – Registration fees and sales tax will be necessary to register motorcycles, and will vary in price, depending on the state. A senior motorcycle rider who has owned his or her bike for over six months and has it registered in another state will not be required to pay sales tax when retitling. However, if a rider tries to register a motorcycle that he or she has owned for fewer than six months from out of the state, he or she may be required to remit taxes within the new state.

Find Out About Senior Motorcycle Registration for Dealership Purchases

Seniors who have purchased motorcycles from dealerships will not have to worry about how to register motorcycle titles, since in most cases, the dealership takes care of much of the registration process. However, a senior lessee should be aware that in some states, a unique form will be completed on his or her behalf to inform the state’s DMV that the senior is the lessee. This form will serve as proof of ownership without a proper title of ownership.

Get Information on Senior Motorcycle Registration for Private Purchases

Senior citizens will need to submit the same information as previously listed to the state’s DMV office to complete motorcycle registration when purchasing from private sellers, such as those who sell motorcycles online. Note that in some states, it may be necessary to submit this information in person, alongside the person selling the vehicle. Most states do not provide an option to register motorcycle online, even if the vehicle was purchased online, unless through a dealership.

In terms of private purchases, seniors should also note that in order to register motorcycle titles, a market value report form may need to be completed through the DMV office for tax filing purposes. This may be necessary when purchasing from a family member or friend who sells the vehicle significantly below market value. This documentation is necessary, as the cost of sales tax when registering a motorcycle will depend upon the price paid. Without this document, a senior may be liable for taxes at the full fair market cost.

How do I register a first-time bike?

Registering motorcycle titles for the first-time is a process that may apply to those senior citizens who have received a motorcycle as a gift. For these bikes, the only information needed to register is that which has been previously listed. Senior registrants may be required to submit this information to register a motorcycle, in person at the state’s DMV office, and must also receive a safety inspection within 10 days. A gifting form must be submitted along with the other listed documentation if a gift exemption tax claim will be made.

How do I register a motorcycle from out of state?

Motorcycle registrations that have been completed out-of-state must be surrendered to the new state in which the owner seeks registration. Once the title has been received by the new state’s DMV, seniors may follow the same steps as listed previously.Senior bikers that have registered a motorcycle through an out-of-state lessor will need to contact the vehicle’s lienholder to transfer registration information over to the new state of registry. Seniors must formally request that the lienholder transfer the title to them or the Department of Transportation within the state of registry.