Motorcycle Registration in Wisconsin

Any time you acquire a new motorcycle, be it a purchase, trade, or gift, you must transfer the title into your name and you must register the motorcycle and pay the required fees.

Here's an outline of all the documentation you'll need in order to register your motorcycle:

  • The current title certificate, signed by the person selling the motorcycle; no photocopies are accepted.
  • A completed Wisconsin Title and License Plate application, available online using the free Adobe Reader.
  • Proper ID if you go in person.
  • Your existing license plate to transfer, or the fees for the registration and new plates if you either don't have plates or if your plate will expire within three months.
  • Cash (if you go in person), check, or money order for the title fee, sales tax, local sales tax (if applicable), and wheel tax (if applicable). Make your check or money order payable to Registration Fee Trust.

Have all of the above documentation with your when you go in person to the DMV service center or your local registration provider.

License Plates

You must have a license plate in place within two days after you purchase a new motorcycle. You may use your own plates if you already have them and have applied for the transfer; otherwise, you may purchase temporary plates to use until you receive your permanent plates.

You may also be interested in specialty and personalized license plates, such as Green Bay Packers and University of Wisconsin. Check out our License Plates and Placards section for information about these plates.

Wisconsin provides an online License Plate Guide fee listing with all the details you'll need to order your plates. Note that there is an annual fee of $15 in addition to the regular renewal fee for personalized or specialized license plates.


These are the basic registration fees and license plate fees for the registration of a new motorcycle. Here's a list of motorcycle plate fees.


Motorcycle registrations are renewed every other year. You will receive a reminder in the mail about 30 days before your current registration is set to expire.

In some cases, you might even be eligible to renew your registration online. Look on your renewal notice; if there is a Renewal Reference Number (RRN) listed in the box right below the total amount due figure, they you are eligible for online renewal.

Lost Renewal Notice

Has your renewal notice been lost or destroyed? If so, you can download the application for a Substitute Renewal Notice. Complete the form, send it to the DMV at:

  • Department of Transportation
  • P.O. Box 7911
  • Madison, WI 53707

The DMV will send you a duplicate renewal notice.

If your motorcycle returns to operational status before the year is out, you must pay the registration for the full amount of time that has lapsed. If your motorcycle's license plate stickers have been lost, damaged, or stolen, you may ask the DMV to send you a set of duplicate stickers, by sending an e-mail message to, or call the 24 hour automated telephone line at (608) 266-1466.

Be sure to include all of the following information:

  • License plate number.
  • What type of sticker is needed.
  • Your full name including middle initial.
  • Full mailing address with city, state, & zip.
  • Your e-mail address.
  • Daytime phone with area code.

Your duplicate stickers will be on their way to you on the next business day, at no charge.

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