Motorcycle Registration in New Jersey
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According to New Jersey law, a motorcycle has a saddle, seat, or platform where the driver stands or sits, whether the motor is permanent or attached. All three-wheeled vehicles (trikes) are also classified as motorcycles.
Visit your local Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) Agency with the manufacturer's Certificate of Origin or a New Jersey or out-of-state title or registration. If your vehicle is not titled or registered, bring a notarized bill of sale from the last owner to the purchaser, describing the vehicle and sale price.
You must also provide proof of insurance and pay the $65 motorcycle registration fee. A title without a lien is $60 ($85 with a lien).
Safety and Emissions
New Jersey also wants to make sure all registered motorcycles meet the safety and emissions standards set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). To that end, the MVC will ask you to provide certain photographic documentation when you first register your motorcycle. Grab your camera and show the MVC color photos of the following:
- NHTSA label
- EPA Noise Emissions label
- EPA Exhaust Emissions label
- Side of the motorcycle
If your bike is model year 2005 and older and is 50 CCs or smaller, you don't need to show photos of the EPA labels.
To operate your motorcycle legally, you must have:
- A valid motorcycle license
- An approved protective helmet with four square inches of reflective tape on each side
- Helmets for all passengers
- An approved face shield or goggles if your motorcycle is not equipped with an approved windscreen
But those safety precautions are for the driver. What about the bike itself? In fact, New Jersey conducts safety inspections on motorcycles between April and October.
When your motorcycle is inspected, you'll be asked to show your valid motorcycle rider's license, the motorcycle's valid registration, and proof of insurance. Then the following items on the motorcycle will be checked:
- Handlebars or grips no more than 15 inches higher than the operator's seat
- Seat, handholds, and footrests
- Adequate brakes on front and rear wheels
- Steering, suspension, and wheel alignment
- Red rear light and reflector
- Stoplight and headlight
- Rearview mirror
- Exhaust system
- License plates with current decal
A motorized bicycle (moped) is a pedal bicycle having a helper motor. Mopeds must be titled, registered, and insured in New Jersey―just like motorcycles. The title fee is $20, and the registration fee is $15.
One difference between mopeds and motorcycles, however, is that mopeds are exempt from the inspection requirements. To qualify as a moped and skip the inspections, a vehicle must meet the following conditions:
- It must be a pedal bicycle
- The motor must be less than 50 CCs
- It must have no more than 1.5 brake horsepower
- Its maximum speed can't be greater than 25 mph on a flat surface
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