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Motorcycle insurance without a license

It’s possible to get coverage and lower your rates with a few extra steps.


Fact checked

Insurance companies may view your unlicensed status as a higher risk, especially if it’s due to license suspension. However, you do have options to get insurance for a motorcycle that you own but can’t drive — like naming the main driver as the primary insured.

Can I get motorcycle insurance without a license?

Yes. You may still need insurance on a bike you own, even if you don’t have a license.

This situation could happen for several reasons:

  • You have a suspended license
  • You purchased a car before getting licensed
  • You purchased a car in your name for another driver
  • You own a vintage bike that you don’t drive

How do I get insurance without a license?

Getting insurance without a license may be tricky, since insurance companies often use your driving record to determine rates. In addition, you may have difficulty finding an insurer who accepts unlicensed policyholders.

You may need to speak to a representative directly to find out if a company offers coverage. Some companies require that you have a state-issued ID card to get insurance.

A few ways to increase your chances of getting coverage:

  • Exclude yourself. Excluding yourself on the policy means you won’t get coverage for riding your bike. But you also won’t be factored in as a risk for unlicensed driving. Update this information if you choose to get or regain your license.
  • Name a primary driver. Naming another primary driver on the policy means your insurance company will use that person’s driving record to determine rates.
  • Wait to get insurance. If you’ll have your license soon and no one needs to drive the bike right away, you could wait to get coverage until you pass your driving test or your license is no longer suspended. You might pay a little extra for insurance if you have a lapse in coverage, but it’ll be easier to get coverage with a license.

Compare motorcycle insurance for drivers with no license

Name Product Roadside assistance Accident forgiveness Available states
Progressive motorcycle insurance
Yes (earned after 3 years with no accidents and 4 years of loyalty)
All 50 states
Enjoy some of the widest coverage with the lowest price thanks to add-ons and freebies like replacement cost coverage.
Allstate motorcycle insurance
Included free
All 50 states
One of the longest lists of coverage options for bikes, plus free perks like equipment coverage for your high-end riding gear.
Esurance motorcycle insurance
Included free
43 states
Cover pricey riding gear while snagging bike-specific discounts for motorcycle licensing or safety courses.
Liberty Mutual motorcycle insurance
All 50 states
Enjoy unique perks along with your wide bike coverage, like free accident forgiveness after going claims-free with any insurer.
The General motorcycle insurance
43 states
Avoid riding interruptions with acceptance as a high-risk driver, help with filing an SR-22 and instant access to proof of insurance.

Compare up to 4 providers

How much does motorcycle insurance cost without a license?

It depends on the reason you don’t have a license and who’s going to be the main insured on the policy.

If you’re the main driver, insurance companies may view your unlicensed status as an increased risk, which could drive up your premium. High-risk riders often see a 30% to 100% increase on their insurance, depending on their driving record. For example, a driver with a DUI may pay 60% more for car insurance, while a driver with several speeding tickets may pay 20% to 30% more.

Since the average motorcycle policy costs $500 per year, a high-risk policy could increase to over $800 per year.

On the other hand, you may be getting motorcycle insurance so that another driver can enjoy your bike. By using the primary driver’s license and driving record, you could see more typical insurance rates.

Case study

John needs to keep insurance on his bike until he regains his driver’s license. His license was suspended due to too many traffic violations.

Because of his driving record, his new premium would cost $750 per year. However, John names his father as the primary driver and excludes himself from the policy. Doing so brings his premium back down to $550 per year, and his vehicle is now covered if anyone with a license needs to ride it.

Companies may also lower your rates if you exclude yourself as a driver from the policy. This means you won’t get coverage for driving, but the decreased risk should offer savings on your premium.

What kind of motorcycle coverage should I get without a license?

The amount of coverage you need depends on how you’ll be using the bike. If your license was suspended but you need to meet state requirements, you can opt for minimum coverage like liability. However, if you need motorcycle insurance for another driver, you might consider add-on coverage as well.

Common coverage for those who don’t have a license:

Bodily injury liability

Covers medical bills for the other driver and passengers if any drivers on your policy are at fault.

Property damage liability

Pays for vehicle damage for the other driver and passengers.


Protects you from paying for bike repairs out of pocket.


Covers non-collision accidents, such as theft, vandalism and falling tree branches.

What should I watch out for if I don’t have a license?

Unlicensed motorcycle policyholders should keep in mind several situations that they might experience:

  • Driving without a license. You can get insurance as an unlicensed driver, but that doesn’t mean you can legally ride the bike. Driving without a license may result in increased consequences from your state.
  • Driving as an excluded driver. Excluding yourself as a driver means you won’t get coverage with your policy. If you get into an accident while riding your bike, you’ll need to pay for the damages yourself.
  • Getting or regaining your license. Contact your insurance company to update your policy, especially if you’ve excluded yourself.
  • Insuring young drivers. Naming a young driver as the primary driver on your policy may increase the rate. Compare different scenarios to be sure. For example, you might add another primary driver onto the policy and keep the younger person as an additional driver if this matches your motorcycle usage.

Bottom line

Getting motorcycle insurance without a license may prove tricky in high-risk situations, such as a suspended license. However, you can reduce the risk for your insurance company by excluding yourself from the policy and naming another primary rider.

Compare motorcycle insurance providers to find the best option for your situation.

Frequently asked questions

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