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Nevada’s Motorcycle Laws: Know Your Rights

Motorcycle accidents are a common occurrence in Las Vegas, resulting in serious injuries or even death. The reasons for this are often related to illegal operation of a motorcycle in Nevada as well as improper training on how to operate the bike. Motorcycles are inherently more dangerous than passenger vehicles, making it critical for riders to follow all traffic safety rules and be hyper-aware of their surroundings. 

Below is important information on your rights and obligations under Nevada’s motorcycle laws, so that you are aware and stay in compliance when you hit the road and in case you are ever involved in a Las Vegas motorcycle accident.

Motorcycle License Required

Motorcycle accidents are more common than not in Las Vegas. It is true that a standard driver’s license may permit a driver to legally operate virtually any vehicle in the state of Nevada, however, motorcycles are not included. In order to operate a motorcycle on a public road legally, drivers must obtain a “Class M” license; this can be added as an “endorsement” to a standard driver’s license. That being said, in order to receive this endorsement you must show that you can safely operate a motorcycle.

Obtaining a motorcycle license can be done in one of two ways:

  • Take a motorcycle operator course at an approved school in the state of Nevada, in which there is no need to take a road test or examination at the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles (“NDMV”); or
  • Do not take a motorcycle operator course and, instead, you must take both a written skill and knowledge exam as well as a practical road evaluation.

Equipment and Traffic Laws

Although much of the state of Nevada is rural, there is a helmet requirement for all motorcyclists. If the motorcycle cannot exceed 30 mph or is less than two horsepower, a rider must be wearing a Department of Transportation (“DOT”) approved helmet at all times he or she is driving a motorcycle on public roads. Although the state of Nevada has strict regulations on motorcycle operation when compared to other states, these types of crashes are common and often deadly. For this reason, it is critical to follow Nevada’s rules including:

  • Not having more than one passenger, unless the motorcycle is designed for multiple riders;
  • While the motorcycle is being operated, the handlebars for the driver cannot be higher than the operator’s shoulders;
  • All motorcycles must have one or two operating headlamps at all times;
  • Any motorcycle made after 1973 (non-antique) must have operational turn signals, which must be used while being operated on the roads.

Notably, under Nevada Revised Statute (“NRS”) 486.331, anyone operating a motorcycle has all the rights and obligations provided by law and applicable to drivers of

motor vehicles. This means that drivers of passenger vehicles do not have preference over motorcyclists. 

Contact an Attorney

The attorneys at H&P Law will ensure that your rights are respected and upheld in Nevada court. Our personal injury lawyers will fight for the compensation you deserve due to the harm suffered as a result of another driver’s actions while you were lawfully operating a motorcycle. Contact us today for your initial case evaluation. 

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