Motorcycle Endorsement and Safety FAQs

1. What does CY mean?

CYcle endorsement for operating motorcycles.

2. How can I tell if I have my CY?

You will have “CY” in the Endorsement section of your driver’s license, right below your height.

3. Is requiring a Motorcycle (CY) Endorsement just an excuse to charge people more money?

The state partially covers the cost of the public training courses. Your training enrollment and endorsement fees help pay for the instructors’ time, facility rental, motorcycles to use, etc. The state does not profit from the training course.

4. Where can I take a course?

There are approximately 50 locations in Michigan that offer public training courses. Visit Michigan.gov/Motorcycling to find one near you.

5. How come all courses aren’t $50? Some are a lot more!

All public courses are $50. Private training courses can cost more. For a list of public and private courses, visit Michigan.gov/Motorcycling.

6. What’s the difference between public and private training courses?

Under Michigan law, all training courses must utilize the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) curriculum. The difference between public courses and private courses is funding regulations. Public courses are provided by public entities (universities, colleges, etc.) that are eligible for grant funding to partially-support the program with a $50 limit to charge for the course. Private courses are provided by private entities (dealerships, private companies, etc.) that are not eligible for grant funding and fees charged are not regulated by the Michigan Rider Education Program.

7. I tried to sign up for a training course, but they are always full. Now what?

Contact your local sponsor. Some locations hold spots for walk-ins. Sometimes people cancel, which opens a spot for another participant. Find a sponsor near you by going to Michigan.gov/Mi-Rep.

8. I have a big touring bike and you can’t pass the course with that. So what should I do?

Yes, you can! All motorcyclists, no matter the size of their bike, need to learn how to properly maneuver their bike. If you don’t have a bike or don’t want to use your own for training, a bike will be provided at the Basic RiderCourse and 3-Wheel Basic RiderCourse.

9. Why don’t the instructors for the training courses have a CY.

All public and private training course RiderCoaches have their CY. It is a requirement to teach the class.

10. Is this the only way to get an endorsement?

No. You can visit a Secretary of State branch office to take a vision test, a written knowledge test, and obtain a Temporary Instruction Permit. You have up to 180 days to practice with an endorsed motorcyclist. You may then schedule and take the motorcycle rider skills test. If you pass the skills test, you must take your skills test certificate to the SOS branch office to get your CY endorsement.

11. Why not train motorists as well?

The Department of State has a campaign urging motorists to be aware of motorcyclists at all times. For more information on the campaign, visit Michigan.gov/LookTwice. Driver education curriculum requires training on motorcyclist awareness.

12. Why don’t motorcyclists have to wear a helmet?

In Michigan, a helmet is required unless the motorcycle operator is at least 21 years old, has at least $20,000 in first-party medical benefits, and has had a motorcycle endorsement for at least two years or has passed an approved motorcycle safety course. Passengers are also required to wear a helmet unless they are at least 21 years old and have at least $20,000 in first-party medical benefits insurance in addition to the insurance that is required of the motorcycle operator.

13. Why can you buy a motorcycle without having a CY?

You can purchase a motorcycle without an endorsement (for someone else, for example), but it would be illegal to operate without an endorsement. Individuals without a CY should plan to trailer a new motorcycle to its destination.

14. Does my CY ever expire?

As long as you renew it when you renew your driver license, your CY never expires.

15. Does Michigan recognize other state’s endorsements?

Probably! Click here for a list of states with reciprocity.

16. Where can I get more information?

The best place to go for more information is Michigan.gov/Motorcycling.