Motorcycle Registration in Michigan
Before you can legally ride a motorcycle in Michigan, you must register it with the MI Secretary of State (SOS).
Use this guide to learn more about motorcycle registrations as a new Michigan resident AND as a current resident who recently bought a bike.
If you need to renew your motorcycle's registration, head over to our registration renewal guide.
New Michigan Residents
Upon establishing Michigan residency, you must register your motorcycle immediately. Motorcycle registration and titling are done at the same time.
Visit your local SOS office with:
- Your out-of-state motorcycle title.
- If a lienholder has the title, bring your registration card.
- A completed Appointment of Agent (Form TR-128), IF all owners are unable to visit the SOS together.
- Proof of:
- Identity—see the state's list of acceptable documents.
- Michigan motorcycle insurance.
- Payment for the applicable motorcycle registration fee (see below).
Registering Your MI Motorcycle
The process for registering your motorcycle with the MI Secretary of State differs depending on if it was purchased at a dealership OR from a private seller. Below are the steps you'll need to take for either situation.
Motorcycles from MI Dealers
After buying a motorcycle at a Michigan dealership, the dealer will submit all the documents required to register your motorcycle within 15 days of giving you the bike. Check out our section below for a breakdown of the motorcycle registration taxes and fees you'll pay.
The dealership will provide you with copies of each of the documents submitted to the SOS office on your behalf. Keep these documents as temporary proof of ownership until your permanent title and registration arrive in the mail.
Motorcycles from Private Sellers
When you purchase a motorcycle from a private seller, you will be required to handle the registration process yourself. It's recommended that the buyer AND seller go to the SOS office together to complete each of the required steps.
You'll have 15 days from the sale date to register your motorcycle with the Michigan Secretary of State. You can drive the motorcycle home without license plates within 3 days of the purchase date as long as you have:
- The reassigned title.
- Proof of motorcycle insurance.
To register your motorcycle, you'll need to provide the following at your local SOS office:
- The completed and signed title.
- The vehicle identification number (VIN) and odometer reading should be included on the title.
- If there is no space for an odometer reading, fill out an Odometer Mileage Statement (Form BDVR-108).
- Your Michigan motorcycle license.
- Proof of MI motorcycle insurance.
- Payment for all applicable motorcycle registration fees and taxes.
If you still have questions about registering your motorcycle, give the Michigan SOS a call at (888) 767-6424.
Motorcycle Registration Fees & Taxes
The following fees and taxes may be due when you register or renew your motorcycle with the Michigan Secretary of State:
- Initial motorcycle registration fee: Based the number of months you'd like to register your bike. See the SOS' motorcycle registration fees chart.
- Late registration fee: $10.
- Registration transfer fee: $10.
- Use tax: 6% of the purchase price.
- Appointment of Agent/Power of Attorney
- Power of attorney form giving someone else permission to sign SOS documents on your behalf for the buying, selling, OR titling of a vehicle, motorhome, OR watercraft.
- Odometer Mileage Statement
- SOS form used to disclose the amount of miles on a vehicle you're transferring ownership of in Michigan.