Motorcycle Licensing Requirements in Texas

One of the most significant predictors of your motorcycle accident risk is your licensing status. About 20% of motorcyclists do not have a motorcycle license. But unlicensed motorcyclists make up about 40% of motorcycle crash fatalities. In other words, unlicensed riders die at about twice the rate as licensed riders.

Texas, like every other state, requires motorcycle operators to get a special license. The state requires applicants to complete a motorcycle safety course which provides the training and experience riders need to operate a motorcycle safely.

How George Salinas Injury Lawyers Can Help You Obtain Compensation After a Motorcycle Accident in San Antonio, Texas

How George Salinas Injury Lawyers Can Help You Obtain Compensation After a Motorcycle Accident in San Antonio, TX

George Salinas Injury Lawyers is a premiere San Antonio, Texas, personal injury law firm. Since its founding in 2011, our firm has successfully resolved over 1,300 cases and helped our clients recover hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation.

After an accident, our San Antonio motorcycle accident lawyers help with the following:

  • A free consultation to assess your case and outline your legal options
  • A trustworthy, fair, and loyal legal team dedicated to recovering compensation
  • Full access to your lawyer so you always know the status of your case
  • Comprehensive legal services while you focus on your recovery, including negotiating a settlement and taking your case to court if necessary

Motorcycle accidents in San Antonio, TX, can cause catastrophic injuries even when you wear a helmet. Contact George Salinas Injury Lawyers for a free consultation to discuss your injuries and the compensation you can seek under Texas law.

Why Do States Require Motorcycle Licenses?

Experience matters when riding a motorcycle. Safe riding requires balance and skill. Motorcycles are inherently unstable, and even a trained rider will tip over when hit by another vehicle.

As a result, motorcycle accidents are more dangerous than car accidents. When a crash happens, motorcycle operators and passengers are 24 times more likely to die and four times more likely to get injured than motor vehicle occupants.

Motorcycle licensing requirements vary by state. But every state in the U.S. requires you to have a license to legally operate a motorcycle. Texas requires every operator to have a motorcycle license, including tourists passing through the state.

Research has shown that knowing traffic laws and having a driver’s license do not give motorcyclists the right skills to ride safely. Instead, they need specialized knowledge and skills. States ensure riders meet the minimum requirements for safe operation by requiring motorcycle licenses.

How To Get a Motorcycle License in San Antonio, Texas

The motorcycle licensing requirements in Texas give three paths to getting a license:

Applicants With Valid Out-of-State Motorcycle Licenses

If you moved from another state, you can get a Texas motorcycle license by turning in a valid, unexpired out-of-state license. You will still need to meet the documentary requirements by proving Texas residence and either U.S. citizenship or permanent residency.

Applicants Over 18 Not Previously Licensed

Applicants over 18 can apply for a motorcycle license in two ways. If you already have a driver’s license, you can apply for a motorcycle endorsement after taking and passing an approved motorcycle safety course.

This course lasts one day and includes both classroom and hands-on instruction. It covers topics such as:

  • Inspecting your motorcycle to identify possible safety risks
  • Accelerating, braking, and steering safely
  • Emergency maneuvering

When you pass the course, you will receive a certificate of completion. You will take it to a Texas Department of Safety (DPS) office along with your driver’s license to pay a fee and obtain your motorcycle endorsement.

If you do not have a Texas driver’s license, you can still get a motorcycle license. But you must meet all the standards for a driver’s license and a motorcycle endorsement. Specifically, you must:

  • Take and pass a written knowledge test
  • Take and pass a road test
  • Take and pass a motorcycle safety course

Once you meet all these requirements, you can receive a motorcycle license by paying a fee and providing proof of your Texas address and either U.S. citizenship or permanent residency.

Applicants Under 18

Applicants under 18 obtain a license by meeting the same requirements as an unlicensed driver, along with two additional requirements:

First, applicants under 18 need to pass a motorcycle road test in addition to passing a road test in a car. Riders over 18 do not need to take the motorcycle road test. Second, applicants under 18 must have a provisional license, learner’s permit, or certificate of completion from a driver’s education course.

Consequences for Not Having a Motorcycle License in San Antonio, Texas

In addition to a higher risk of a crash, you can face legal penalties for failing to get a motorcycle license. A court can impose a fine of up to $200 for riding without a motorcycle license. The DPS can also add two points to your driving record for a violation.

But the most significant consequence comes after a crash. An at-fault driver could seek to shift blame to you for your injuries. As a result, you might not receive full compensation for your injuries.

Schedule a Free Consultation With Our San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Lawyers

A vehicle can hit your motorcycle even when you do everything right, including qualifying for a motorcycle license. If you have been injured contact today George Salinas Injury Lawyers or call (210) 225-0909 for a free consultation to discuss your motorcycle crash and the compensation you can pursue for your injuries.