South Carolina Motorcycle Driver’s License
Under the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles regulations, anyone who wanted to drive a motorcycle must have a Class M motorcycle driver’s license or motorcycle instruction permit.
Motorcycle driver license requirements for those over 17 years old:
1. Must have held a beginner’s motorcycle permit for at least 180 days.
2. Must provide your birth certificate, social security card, proof of residency and insurance information.
3. Must bring your beginner’s permit.
4. Must pass the vision and road skills tests.
Motorcycle driver license requirements for those under 18 years of age:
1. Must bring a parent or legal guardian to sign your application.
2. Must have held a beginner’s permit for at least 180 days.
3. Must bring your birth certificate, social security card, and proof of residency as well as your insurance information.
4. You must submit documents and certificates that verify you have completed a driver’s education course, had a satisfactory school attendance and practiced driving with a licensed guardian for 40 hours including 10 hours of driving practice at night.
5. Must pass the vision and road skills tests.
- Note: You will obtain full driving privileges when you reached 17 only if you have had your special restricted license (issued to applicants under 17 years of age) for one year and have no traffic violations or been involved with any at-fault accidents.
1. You may drive alone during daylight hours from 6’oclock in the morning until 6 o’clock in the evening.
2. You may drive from 6 o’clock in the evening until midnight under the supervision of a licensed driver of at least 21 years old.
3. You may drive between midnight and 6 o’clock in the morning if under the company of a parent or legal guardian.
4. You are not allowed to transport more than two passengers under 21 years old unless accompanied by a licensed adult.
For new residents of South Carolina
For new residents of South Carolina, you may use a valid motorcycle driver’s license from your former state up to 90 days only.
You must convert your prior license into a South Carolina driver’s license before your 90 day period ends.
You have to provide all legal documents pertaining to your identity such as adoption records, marriage certificate, court ordered name change, and certificate of naturalization which would support any name changes from your birth to present.
However, if you are a military personnel or a student that are temporarily in South Carolina, you are not required to obtain a South Carolina Driver’s license but you must have a motorcycle driver’s license from your home state in order to legally ride a motorcycle in South Carolina.
If your driver’s license from your home state has expired, you also have to pass the knowledge test and road tests of South Carolina. To schedule a road test, you should call the DMV office where you plan to take the skills test and set up a schedule.
A South Carolina license is valid for ten years and must be renewed on the tenth year. Qualified drivers must only have one driver’s license. You are not allowed to have a valid motorcycle license from South Carolina and another state.
Two-Wheel Motorcycles – Side-car
The Class M motorcycle driver’s license will allow an individual who is15 years of age or older to operate any type of motorcycle such as a two-wheel motorcycle, a motorcycle with a side car and a three-wheel motorcycle.
However, those who wanted to operate a motorcycle with side car permanently attached will need a special S3 restriction with their Class M motorcycle driver’s license.
Any three-wheeled motorcycles can be operated with any motorcycle license except a Class G moped license. Also, special endorsements are no longer required to operate these types of motor vehicles.
Each qualified driver can only have one driver’s license and you are not allowed to have a valid license from South Carolina and another state. You South Carolina motorcycle driver’s license is valid for ten years. It must be renewed by your birthday in the tenth year.
Motorcycle Safety Foundation
Whether you are a new or experienced rider, the Motorcycle Safety Foundation offers safety course throughout the state that will help you develop and improve your riding skills but with safety as your utmost consideration. The following are the organizations approved by the MSF to provide motorcycle training courses:
S.C. Technical College System Rider Education
Cox’s Harley-Davidson of Rock Hill
Thunder Tower Harley-Davidson of Columbia
They offer 15-hour of motorcycle safety training and hands-on motorcycle driving experience that covers all aspects of bike riding. Classes are held over consecutive weekends, or a few days.
Just like any other state, South Carolina requires every rider under the age of 21 to wear a motorcycle helmet and eye protection while operation a motorcycle. Persons over 21 years of age are not required but are encouraged.