No Motorcycle Endorsement
The Law and Penalties
Florida Statute §322.03(4) criminalizes the operation of a motorcycle without a specific motorcycle endorsement on a person’s Florida driver’s license. A charge of No Motorcycle Endorsement is a second degree misdemeanor punishable by 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.
How to Receive a Motorcycle Endorsement
To receive a motorcycle endorsement from the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), a driver with a valid class E driver’s license must take and pass the Basic Rider Course (BRC) or Basic Rider Course updated (BRCu) through an authorized Sponsor of the Florida Rider Training Program (FRTP) of the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV). If you already have a motorcycle endorsement from another State, the motorcycle course will not be required, as Florida will honor the endorsement (with the exception of Alabama, where their motorcycle endorsement is only reciprocated with the presentation of a Motorcycle Safety Foundation Basic Rider Course completion card.)
The authorized sponsor who administered the course will submit your results electronically to the Florida DMV. Then, you must go to a driver license (or tax collector) office and pay an endorsement fee.
It is also possible to obtain permission to operate a motorcycle without a class E license as long as the driver obtains a “Motorcycle Only” driver license. Still, the driver must meet similar requirements, including being at least 16 years old, passing the BRC course, passing the same knowledge test for a regular class E operator’s driver license, and paying the endorsement fee.
What is a Motorcycle and When is a Motorcycle Endorsement Required?
A motorcycle is defined by statute as any motor vehicle having a seat for the rider and not more than three wheels in contact with the ground. Although this term includes an autocycle (a motorcycle with two wheels in the front and one wheel in the back that has, among other things, a roll cage, seatbelts, and antilock brakes), an autocycle is specifically excluded from the motorcycle endorsement requirement.
Any motorcycle with an engine size over 50 cubic centimeters requires a Florida motorcycle endorsement. A scooter or moped powered by a motor with a displacement of more than 50cc requires a motorcycle endorsement. A motorized scooter with no seat for the rider is not considered a motorcycle and therefore does not require a motorcycle endorsement.
What Happens with a Charge for No Motorcycle Endorsement
If you are charged with No Motorcycle Endorsement, your criminal case likely started on the road when you received a citation by a police officer. The law enforcement officer takes his or her copy of the citation and submits it to the clerk of courts. From there, the clerk’s office enters the citation into the court system and creates a criminal case number. You are then sent a Notice of Hearing to appear in court for arraignment (formal reading of the charges). Beyond arraignment, your criminal case may have several other court hearings, including case dispositions, plea conferences, and status checks. Ultimately, you will need to review the evidence against you and the plea offer and determine how to proceed on your case (for example: negotiate further, plea guilty, or go to trial).
How Casanova Law Can Help
Founding Attorney of Casanova Law
Our criminal defense law firm’s founding attorney, Lourdes Casanova, is a former prosecutor for Palm Beach County, with thousands of criminal traffic cases under her belt. We advocate for our clients fiercely with the ultimate goal of dismissal of your case. At Casanova Law, you will receive personalized and experienced representation that includes frequent case updates, careful review of the evidence, intensive negotiations with the State Attorney’s Office, strong advocacy in court, and accurate advice to the client.
If you have a No Motorcycle Endorsement charge currently pending in Palm Beach, Martin, Hendry or Glades county, call our criminal defense law firm today.