Every Vermont resident who operates a motorcycle on the highway in Vermont must hold a valid Vermont Driver's or Junior Driver's license with the proper motorcycle endorsement. However, the Commissioner may issue a restricted license to a physically disabled person for the operation of a 3-Wheeled Motorcyle.
All applicants applying for a motorcycle endorsement must hold a valid Vermont license. A fee is required each time an applicant takes the knowledge test. A fee is charged for each motorcycle skills test taken.
Remember, no tests will be given unless you hold a valid Vermont Driver's License, Junior Driver's License, or Commercial Driver License.
Motorcycle Safety Courses
Motorcycle Learner Permits
A Vermont licensed resident who does not possess a motorcycle endorsement may obtain a motorcycle learner permit to learn how to operate a motorcycle. To obtain a motorcycle learner permit you must do the following:
Make an appointment for an examination at an office near you. At the examination, 20 of the 25 questions must be answered correctly. If the written test is failed, there is a waiting period of at least one day before the exam may be taken again.
- If you are 16 or 17 years old in addition to having a valid Junior Driver's License, you MUST also have a parent or legal guardian sign the Motorcycle Learner Permit Application.
- After the permit is issued, you may schedule an appointment for your skills test.
- A motorcycle permit is valid for 120 days from the date of issue and may be renewed only twice. If during the original permit period and two renewals, you have not passed the skills test nor the motorcycle rider training course, you may not obtain another motorcycle learner permit for a period of 12 months from the expiration date of the permit. The 12-month waiting period may be waived if:
- You successfully complete the Motorcycle Rider Training Course, or;
- Your current permit or renewals authorized the operation of all motorcycles and you are now applying for a 3-wheeled motorcycle permit.
The Motorcycle Learner Permit will allow you to ride a motorcycle on any public highway to become familiar with actual operation. There are certain restrictions:
- A motorcycle may be operated during daylight hours only.
- The Motorcycle Learner Permit-holder is not allowed to carry any passengers.
- The motorcycle learner permit is valid in Vermont only.
Ignoring the restrictions will void the Motorcycle Learner Permit.
If you hold a valid Motorcycle Learner Permit you may ride the motorcycle to the skill test area on the day of your appointment. If you fail the skills test and your permit has not expired you will, under most circumstances, be allowed to ride away. If the permit is due to expire you may renew it for 120 days. If it has already been renewed twice you must take the written test again to be issued a new permit.
If you fail the skills test a one-week practice period is required before another skills test may be taken. Remember, whenever you operate your motorcycle you must have your valid Vermont Driver License, Motorcycle Learner Permit, and insurance card in your possession.
You must appear at an examination station and pass a 25 question, multiple-choice, knowledge test based on the material in this manual. To pass the examination, 20 of the 25 questions must be answered correctly. (Results of the written test are valid for 120 days from the date of the examination.) Whenever an applicant fails a written test they must wait at least one day before they may take the exam again.
Upon successful completion of the knowledge test, the applicant will be required to successfully complete a skills test before the endorsement will be issued. There is an annual fee for the motorcycle endorsement. An explanation of the skills test, complete with diagrams, is contained in Part I of this manual.
You will not be permitted to take the skills test unless the cycle you furnish for this purpose is properly equipped, registered, inspected (if required), insured, and in good mechanical condition. If an applicant fails the skills test a one-week practice period is required before another skills test may be taken.
Any motorcycle used for the skills test portion of the exam must be legally transported to the exam site. For example, you can have another licensed motorcycle operator ride the bike to the exam location for you. In this instance, that operator would be required to show a valid license to the examiner. If you have a motorcycle learner permit you may ride the bike to the exam location. You may also transport the bike in another registered vehicle such as a trailer, truck, or van.
- Motorcycles: The operator of any vehicle that is considered a motorcycle must have a motorcycle endorsement on their driver's license. 23 V.S.A. §4(18) defines what a motorcycle is.
- 3-Wheeled Motorcycles: Operators of 3-wheeled motorcycles will be required to take the motorcycle learner's permit examination and the motorcycle skills test. They will receive the motorcycle endorsement (M) with a restriction restricting them to the operation of 3-wheeled motorcycles only.
- Motor-Driven Cycles: Operators of motor-driven cycles are not required to have a motorcycle endorsement, but are required to have a valid driver's license. 23 V.S.A. §4(45) defines what a motor-driven cycle is.