North Carolina motorcycle license renewal questions can affect all riders holding a motorcycle learner’s permit or an endorsement on their provisional, standard or commercial driver’s license. Motorcycle riders have several available options for endorsement renewal through the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (NCDMV). Fees for renewing your motorcycle license will vary contingent with your age, whether your license is expired or not and what class of license you are renewing. Some classes of license do require in-person renewal while others can be handled online.

Some motorcycle endorsement renewals require an applicant to retake road, written or vision tests. Senior citizens older than 72 years of age must renew more often than younger riders. Learner’s permits for motorcycle operation can be renewed only one time and for a shorter expiration period. Most renewals require address, vision and photo information relating to the motorcycle license to be current and up-to-date with the NCDMV.

When to Renew a Motorcycle License in North Carolina

To encourage riders to renew bike license information in a timely manner, North Carolina mails a renewal reminder to all endorsement holders roughly 60 days prior to the listed date of the license expiration. All riders can renew their licenses up to six months prior to the expiration date.

If motorcycle license expiration has occurred within the last two years, you can still generally renew for the same fee but may have to retake the vision exam and road test. Beyond the two-year mark, a completely new application will be required in order to reinstate the motorcycle license.

Eligibility for Motorcycle License Renewal in North Carolina

Motorcycle renewal requirements vary by age group, type of license and expiration period. Most holders of a full provisional or standard license are eligible to renew up to six months prior or two years post their expiration date. If you have received any serious traffic violations, such as a Driving While Impaired (DWI) citation, you may be ineligible to renew until you complete the provisions of your sentence.

Riders older than 72 years of age are required to renew more frequently. All renewals require a correct address and current vision exam on file with the NCDMV.

Required Documents

Documents required to renew a motorcycle license in North Carolina can vary according to whether you need to retake exams or not. If your photo is older than five years, you must provide a new one.

If you are applying to renew a license that has been lost or stolen, you will need to bring two official documents verifying your identity, a Social Security card or any document proving that you do have a Social Security Number.

Instances When You Cannot Renew Your Motorcycle License in North Carolina

You cannot renew a motorcycle endorsement in North Carolina if your license has been suspended or revoked for any reason. You will be required to retake all mandated exams (written, vision, road) as well as complete a full application for a new license. In many cases when a license has been suspended or revoked, proof of insurance will be required before a new license can be issued.

If you have been convicted of any DWI citations during the course of your normal four or eight-year licensing duration, you will be ineligible for renewal. DWI recipients are often mandated to complete a state-approved alcohol and drug awareness program prior to reapplication for a new license.

How to Renew a North Carolina Motorcycle License Online

“Can I renew my motorcycle license online in North Carolina?” you may wonder. Online options do extend to qualified candidates. In order to be eligible to utilize the online renewal process via the NCDMV website, applicants must possess a Class C driver’s license that has not expired past the two-year grace period. To successfully renew online, you will need:

  • The last four digits of your Social Security Number.
  • A valid email address.
  • A Mastercard, Visa, American Express or Discover credit or debit card for payment.

Renewing motorbike license information online will not be an option for you if you have any restriction listed on your license beyond “Corrective Lenses.” You will also not be eligible to renew online if you need to renew a provisional license, commercial license, permit or Class A/B license.

How to Renew a North Carolina Motorcycle License by Mail

You can renew motorcycle endorsement documents by mail in North Carolina in some specified cases.  The by-mail option can only be utilized every other renewal cycle. This means you would have had to renew in person or online for your previous renewal in order to be eligible to renew by mail this year. You must be living temporarily outside of North Carolina for a minimum of 30 continuous days or be stationed on active duty with the United States Armed Forces in order to utilize this method of renewal.

When you renew an m1 license by mail, this endorsement expires 60 days after you return to North Carolina or on the listed expiration date featured on the face of the license itself, whichever comes first. Full provisional and commercial licenses are not eligible to be renewed by mail at all. In order to complete motorcycle license renewal by mail, applicants must meet all of the following criteria:

  1. Sign and date a provided vision statement and National Sex Offender Affidavit
  2. Not be older than 72 years of age on the date of a renewal request
  3. Have a verifiable and permanent North Carolina residence
  4. Have a photo from the last five years on file with the NCDMV
  5. Have a Social Security number or United States government-issued document detailing legal presence on file with the NCDMV
  6. Have a North Carolina Class C driver’s license that has not been expired more than two years

How to Renew a North Carolina Motorcycle License in Person

If where to renew motorcycle license documentation represents a concern, any local NCDMV field office can be of assistance. You do not need an appointment unless you are planning to take a road test.  Bike license renewal in North Carolina must be completed in person at a local NCDMV field office for any applicant meeting any of the following criteria:

  • Has any restriction other than “Corrective Lenses” listed on driver’s license
  • Has an outstanding debt owed to the NCDMV
  • Has a suspended license
  • Has a United States government document detailing legal presence
  • Needs to change address
  • Needs to renew an endorsement attached to a commercial driver’s license, Class A or B license, provisional license or learner permit

If renewing motorcycle license documents that have been expired past the two-year grace period, applicants will need to retake the off-street motorcycle skills test. Motorcycle skills tests are available by appointment only, on weather-permitting Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Call ahead at your local DMV field office if you need the road test as all DMV offices do not offer the motorcycle skills test.

How to Renew a Motorcycle Permit in North Carolina

Motorcycle permit renewal in North Carolina can only be accomplished one time. After that initial renewal, riders are encouraged to upgrade to the full motorcycle endorsement attached to their standard or commercial license. First-time applicants for a motorcycle permit in North Carolina must already possess a full provisional, regular or commercial driver’s license.

A road sign identification test, motorcycle knowledge test and vision test must be successfully completed. Applicants between 16-18 years of age must provide a full provisional license, signed parental consent and proof of completion of a motorcycle safety course via the North Carolina Motorcycle Safety Education Program or Motorcycle Safety Foundation.

Renewing a motorcycle permit one time for a period of six months can be handled in person at any local DMV office. As first-time permits remain valid for a period of twelve months, the maximum amount of time anyone can hold a valid motorcycle permit in North Carolina is 18 months in total.

North Carolina Motorcycle License Renewal Costs

The motorcycle license renewal fee you pay in North Carolina will appear as a nominal attachment to the price of renewing your full provisional or standard license. The standard motorcycle endorsement costs $2.30 per year. This amounts to an additional $9.20 for a four-year license or $18.40 for an eight-year license. When pondering the question, “How much does it cost to renew a motorcycle license?,” remember that your fee can vary widely based on whether your license has expired, what type of license you hold (commercial or standard) as well as your age. Motorcycle learner’s permits cost $20 to instate and $13 to replace.

Motorcycle license renewal cost in North Carolina can be covered in the form of Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover credit or debit cards. You can also pay renewal fees via cash, money orders or personal checks. Online transactions must be paid for via credit or debit card. Payment by check is available only for in-person or by-mail transactions and must observe the following conditions:

  1. Check accompanied by two forms of identification
  2. Check written out in black or blue ink and made payable to “NCDMV”
  3. Check is pre-printed with bearer’s correct name, address and phone number
  4. Check is issued from a North Carolina-based bank or bank with a North Carolina branch

Different fees apply to the renewal of motorcycle permits. If your motorcycle permit expired, you must pay the full $20 associated with obtaining your original permit. If you simply need a duplicate or to renew for the next six months, expect to pay $13.

Last updated on Wednesday, March 6 2019.

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