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Bike enthusiasts, make sure you follow these Colorado motorcycle laws

Riding a motorcycle is an otherworldly experience, especially in a state as beautiful as Colorado. If you’re going to get the most out of your ride, you’ll need to be aware of all Colorado motorcycle laws.


Many of the same laws that apply to four-wheel vehicles apply to motorcycles, but some pertain specifically to bikes. This article will address many of the most important ones.


colorado motorcycle laws

A Denver motorcycle accident lawyer with Zaner Harden Personal Injury Lawyers will be ready to help if you’re injured in a wreck that’s not your fault. In the meantime, keep reading to learn more about Colorado motorcycle laws.


Obtaining a motorcycle license


You need to have the proper driver’s license endorsement to ride your motorcycle in Colorado. 


There are two kinds of endorsements in Colorado. If you have an “M” endorsement, you’ll legally be able to ride two- and three-wheel motorcycles. If you have a “3” endorsement, you’ll only be able to ride three-wheel bikes. 


You can get your endorsement in one of two ways.


  1. Purchase a motorcycle permit then pass both a rider’s skills test and a written test. You’ll then need to buy a new license so the endorsement can be added.
  2. You can complete the MOST (Motorcycle Operator Safety Training) course. Once you do, just bring the card you receive upon completion of the course to your local DMV office. They’ll add the endorsement when you purchase a new driver’s license.


If you already have an endorsement from another state, you’ll be able to add it when you get your new Colorado driver’s license. If you have an MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) card, it’s important you know that it will not be accepted.


The only exception will be if you obtained your MSF on a military base and used a valid military identification card to get it. 

Colorado helmet laws


Study after study has proven that motorcycle helmets save lives – nearly 1,900 of them in 2017 alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 750 more lives would have been saved that year if every rider wore a helmet.


colorado motorcycle helmet laws

Still, Colorado doesn’t require motorcyclists to wear helmets unless they’re younger than 18, but it’s highly recommended that you wear one.  


Insurance requirements (and penalties)


Every person who operates a vehicle in Colorado – whether it has two, three, or four wheels must have liability insurance that offers a minimum of $15,000 for property damage per accident, $25,000 for bodily injury per person, and $50,000 for bodily injury per accident.


If you don’t have at least minimum coverage, you could be looking at not only stiff fines but possibly a license suspension as well.


It’s highly recommended that you purchase both liability and comprehensive insurance at rates well above the minimum so that there’s sufficient coverage in the event of an accident.


Lane-splitting laws


Lane-splitting, driving on the line, or passing a car while it’s in the same lane as you, is illegal in Colorado. It’s also incredibly unsafe. 


Some call it “lane-splitting” when two riders drive in the same lane side-by-side, however, that’s not the definition used by Colorado State Troopers, and this version isn’t illegal. 


Motorcycle noise laws


A lot of riders love the sound of a powerful motorcycle engine. But if you’re going to ride in Colorado, you’ll need to dial it down a bit. If you’re traveling on any highway or other type of major road, your bike will need a muffler.


Also, the noise level of your motorcycle can’t be louder than 86 dBA. For perspective, that’s the level of noise a freight train makes when it’s 100 feet away from you


Motorcycle lighting requirements


You’ll need to turn on your motorcycle light and tail lights at night. It has to be a white light, and it has to project at least 500 feet in front of your bike.


Passenger on motorcycle laws


If you’re planning on having a passenger, they’ll need to be behind you – they can never be in front of you. If they can’t ride behind you, then they’ll need to be in a sidecar.


While there isn’t a minimum age requirement for Colorado motorcycle passengers, they must be tall enough to reach the footrests, and they must wear a DOT-approved helmet if they’re under the age of 18.


Hurt in a motorcycle crash? Get in touch with Zaner Harden Law


The Denver motorcycle accident attorneys with Zaner Harden Law are standing by to fight for your rights if you’ve suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else’s negligence.


We know how to deliver results on behalf of our clients, and we’ll work hard to do the same for you. Contact our Denver law office online or call (720) 613-9706 today for a free case review.


Contact our Denver Motorcycle Accident Law Firm Today For Help


For more information please contact Zaner Harden Personal Injury Lawyers to schedule a free initial consultation with a Denver motorcycle accident lawyer.


Zaner Harden Personal Injury Lawyers

1610 Wynkoop Street, Suite 120. Denver, CO 80202
(720) 613 9706


Where We Are

We are located across the street from Union Station in downtown Denver and offer validated parking for all our clients. We also have offices in Boulder and Colorado Springs.