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Motorcycle Registration in Virginia

All Virginia residents must register their motorcycles with the Department of Motor Vehicles before riding on the Old Dominion's roads. On this page, we'll teach you about registering your bike as a new VA resident AND as a current resident who recently bought a motorcycle.

Looking to renew your motorcycle registration? Head over to our Virginia registration renewal guide for more!

New Virginia Residents

After moving to Virginia, you'll have 30 days to register your motorcycle with the DMV.

BEFORE submitting an application for registration, you must:

  • Complete a safety inspection AND possibly an emissions test, if you've moved to a qualifying county. Head over to our car inspections guide for details.
  • Apply for a Virginia title within 30 days of moving. Visit our title transfers guide for details.
  • Purchase VA motorcycle insurance.
    • If you don't wish to purchase insurance and want to operate your motorcycle at your own risk, you can instead pay a $500 uninsured motorist fee at the time of registration.

After completing the steps above, head to your local DMV office with the following items:

  • Your motorcycle's:
    • Title.
    • Applicable inspection certificates.
  • A completed Vehicle Registration Application (Form VSA 14).
  • If you're leasing the motorcycle, a power of attorney form from the lessor.
  • Proof of Virginia motorcycle insurance OR payment for the uninsured motorist fee.
  • Payment for the $28.75 registration fee, plus any other applicable taxes or fees.

You will have the option to register your motorcycle for either 1 year OR 2 years. Should you choose 2 years, you'll need to pay twice the base registration fee.

Registering a VA Motorcycle

The process for registering your motorcycle varies depending on whether it was purchased at a dealership OR from a private seller.

Below are the steps required to register your motorcycle with the VA Department of Motor Vehicles in both scenarios.

Motorcycles Bought at Dealerships

When you purchase a motorcycle at a Virginia dealership , the dealer will typically submit all required documents to the DMV for you. Sales tax and the costs associated with registration are usually included in the purchase price. To see what you can expect pay, check out our section on motorcycle registration taxes and fees below.

Ask the dealership agent if any additional steps are required on your end to complete the process. The dealer may give you a temporary registration to use until your license plates and official VA registration arrive in the mail.

Motorcycles Bought from Private Sellers

If you bought a motorcycle from a private seller in Virginia, you'll be responsible for registering the motorcycle yourself.

PRIOR to applying for your registration, make sure the bike has a:

  • Valid safety inspection sticker.
  • Current emissions inspection certificate for applicable counties.

If you're missing inspection stickers, you'll need to complete the necessary safety and emissions tests before heading to the DMV.

Once you're ready, present the following at your local Virginia DMV office:

You can choose to register your motorcycle for either 1 year OR 2 years; if you choose 2 years, you'll need to pay twice the base registration fee.

VA Motorcycle Registration Fees & Taxes

You could be required to pay the following fees and taxes when registering your motorcycle with the VA Department of Motor Vehicles:

  • Motorcycle registration (1 year): $28.75.
    • You'll need to pay twice this fee if you want to register your bike for 2 years.
  • Motorcycle safety inspection fee: $12.
  • Sales and use tax: 4.15% of the purchase price.

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