top of page

Wisconsin laws you need to know about and understand if you ride a motorcycle

As a motorcycle rider in the state of Wisconsin, it is very important that you know and understand the applicable laws. This runs the full gamut of Wisconsin motorcycle requirements.

Wisconsin motorcycle laws

According to the State of Wisconsin’s Department of Transportation, a motorcycle is defined as, “…a motor vehicle designed and built to have no more than three wheels. It must have its own power source and be capable, under ideal road conditions, of speeds in excess of 30 mph with a 150 pound rider.”

The specifics of Wisconsin’s motorcycle laws are as follows. Please note that these laws do not all apply to off-road use, but do to interstates, state roads and local roads.

  • Every motorcycle operator must have a Class M motorcycle license or motorcycle instruction permit. To obtain a motorcycle instruction permit, the applicant must pass the motorcycle knowledge test, a sign test and a vision screening. (There are very specific instructions for obtaining an instruction permit.)

  • Helmets are required for all riders and passengers under the age of 18 and those in this age group must complete a rider education course. Those over the age of 18 with a full license can decide whether or not to wear a helmet.

  • Eye protection (a windscreen, a helmet shield, and glasses or goggles) is required of all motorcycle riders.

  • Motorcycle headlights must be turned on 24 hours a day when in use.

  • All motorcycles must be equipped with turn signals, one rear-view mirror, and a muffler. In addition, handlebars may not be more than 30 inches above the seat level.

  • If carrying a passenger, motorcycles must be equipped with a passenger seat and footrest.

  • Liability insurance coverage is required for all Wisconsin motorcyclists.

  • Wisconsin law permits two motorcycles to drive next to each other in the same traffic lane.

  • Use of helmet speakers is permitted.

  • Passengers of any age may ride a motorcycle with a licensed driver.

As a motorcyclist in Wisconsin, you should always know the applicable laws so that you don’t inadvertently break them and so that you also know what safety requirements are in place to limit any personal injury that may occur from a motorcycle accident.

If you have any questions about this topic or any other questions related to personal injury law, please call us at 920-725-8464, or toll free at 1-800-529-1552. Our personal injury consultations are always free.

Please click on to read our other personal injury articles.

The content of this blog was prepared by Law Offices of DiRenzo & Bomier, LLC for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or provide legal advice. Laws differ by jurisdiction, and the information in this blog may not apply to you. You should seek the assistance of an attorney licensed to practice in your state before taking any action. Using this blog site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Law Offices of DiRenzo & Bomier, LLC -client relationships can only be created by written contract.

5,096 views1 comment

1 則留言


You may want to add that in Wisconsin if you have waited 45 seconds at a red light and yield to cross traffic, you may proceed with a red light facing you. This statute was adopted to allow a motorcycle that doesn’t have enough mass/metal to trip the sensor in the roadway to allow the green light to come on.

bottom of page