A motorcycle license renewal in Michigan is a process that is mandatory and must be completed periodically. All motor vehicle licenses and activities associated with them are handled through Michigan’s Office of the Secretary of State (SOS), a part of its State Department. A renewal for a motorcycle endorsement, which is what Michigan uses instead of a separate license, is attached to a regular driver’s license.

To renew a motorcycle license, drivers may follow the same procedures as those for renewing a standard license as they are the same. Due to this convenience, renewing a motorcycle license has the same sorts of guidelines and eligibility as the standard license as well as the supporting documents needed to complete the application process. Moreover, the Michigan SOS provide several avenues to renewal. To find out more about motorcycle endorsement renewal in Michigan, continue reading the following article.

When to Renew a Motorcycle Endorsement in Michigan

Renewing a motorcycle endorsement in Michigan coincides with the need to renew a standard driver’s license. Both these driving credentials are normally issued with a period that makes them valid for four years at a time. They expire on the driver’s date of birth. However, for motorcycle endorsement renewals for any Michigan drivers younger than the age of 21, renewal must take place and be completed by the time the driver turns 21.

Michigan’s SOS sends out reminder letters about motorcycle endorsement renewals approximately 45 days prior to the expiration date on all endorsement and license credentials. However, there is no grace period afforded Michigan motorists. If renewing a motorcycle endorsement occurs after the expiration date, there may be late fines and penalties assessed to the driver. To avoid having to pay late fees and penalties, drivers in Michigan may renew their licenses and endorsement up to 12 full months before the expiration date.

Eligibility for Motorcycle Endorsement Renewal in Michigan

The motorcycle renewal requirements in Michigan may actually vary slightly according to the method of renewal you opt for during the process. While applying for a renewal online may have slightly different requirements than doing so in person, all renewal requirements mandate that applicants are at least 16 years of age and possess a valid Michigan driver’s license.

Eligibility to renew a motorcycle endorsement includes citizenship status, the status of your driver’s license, proof of your residency in the state, and other information. Included in the items you can use to satisfy the renewal requirements are:

  • Proof of name, date of birth, and place of birth – You can use several documents to satisfy this requirement. Among them are a U.S. passport or birth certificate, a certificate of citizenship (obtained by naturalized citizens), or current immigration documents. Other forms of identification that are acceptable to the SOS include:
    • A marriage certificate
    • A divorce certificate
    • Employee photo ID
    • Military ID
    • School photo ID
  • Proof of Social Security Number – To renew your motorcycle license, this requirement can be satisfied with your Social Security card or a letter from the Social Security Administration. Other proof may include:
    • A W2
    • A 1099 form
    • A pay stub.
  • Proof of a Michigan address – You can use supporting documentation including bank statements, a current utility bill, or a recent pay stub to show your current address. Proof may also include items such as:
    • Current license or ID card.
    • Mortgage documents.
    • A lease.
    • Government-issued mail.

For those who wish to renew a motorcycle endorsement via regular mail, there are some specific eligibility requirements in Michigan. These include the following:

  • Applicants may not appear listed on the state’s sex offender registry.
  • Applicants may not have renewed their last license by mail.
  • Applicants are mandated to have their Social Security Number confirmed by the Social Security Administration (SSA).

Instances When You Cannot Renew Your Motorcycle License in Michigan

Michigan drivers may not renew a motorcycle endorsement or their standard driver’s license if their privileges are on the suspended or revoked list. Having unpaid parking tickets or traffic tickets is also cause to prevent a renewal. Resolving the owed fines can clear the way for a renewal.

How to Renew a Michigan Motorcycle License Online

You may ask yourself ‘Can I renew my motorcycle license online?’ The state of Michigan’s SOS website is the portal to use when you want to renew your driving credentials online. For those who wish to renew a motorcycle endorsement online, they must first make sure that they meet the specific eligibility requirements necessary to do so. These include the following:

  • You completed your last motorcycle endorsement renewal in person.
  • You are a United States citizen with a standard driver’s license and motorcycle endorsement, not an enhanced driver’s document.
  • You are not applying for a credential that meets the standards for the REAL ID as provided for under federal law.
  • You have not requested a duplicate credential from the SOS online during the previous four weeks.
  • You have not changed your address with the SOS during the previous 10 days and the SOS has your current Social Security Number on file.
  • Your health has not undergone any changes which could affect your ability to ride safely.
  • Your motorcycle endorsement renewal is not for a credential that has been expired for more than four years.

You may begin the renewal process on the SOS website portal and fill out the appropriate sections with information such as your name, date of birth, Social Security Number, eye color, and license number. Then you may pay the associated fee with a valid credit or debit card. You should then print out the receipt. Your new document will be mailed to you.

How to Renew a Michigan Motorcycle License in Person

Michigan drivers may renew a motorcycle license in person if they are not eligible to do so online or by mail, or if they simply prefer to do it in person. To renew in person, you must have your current driver’s license with the endorsement with you when you visit an SOS office. You must also submit to a vision test, provide proof of your Social Security Number, and pay all applicable fees.

If you are planning to obtain a REAL ID document you must also present proof of your legal U.S. presence such as citizenship or immigration and/or visa documents. Your motorcycle license renewal may require you to retake the skills and knowledge tests if your credential expired more than four years ago.

How to Renew a Michigan Motorcycle License by Mail

A motorcycle license renewal is available through the regular mail for Michigan motorists who opt against the online method and who do not wish to visit an SOS office in person. This motorbike license renewal method has its own requirements.

In order to renew by mail, motorists may not be on the state’s sex offender registry or have completed their last renewal by mail or online. A valid Social Security Number is needed and no changes to personal information are permitted.

To complete the motorcycle endorsement renewal, you must fill out the renewal notice and mail it back to the SOS office address listed on the notice along with the appropriate payment. It is advisable to send in your renewal packet at least three weeks before your expiration date.

Michigan Motorcycle Renewal Costs

Paying for a motorcycle license renewal requires paying for the standard driver’s license as well since they are both renewed at the same time. A standard motorcycle renewal is $9, but there is an additional $7 charge if you renew it late. For online and mailed renewals, payment may be made with checks, money orders, and credit and debit cards online. In person, cash may be used in addition to these methods.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 5 2019.

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