Do motorcycles need turn signals in Colorado? - Front Range Injury Attorneys – Denver Personal Injury Lawyers

Do motorcycles need turn signals in Colorado?

Motorcycles are a popular mode of transportation in Colorado, especially during the warmer months. However, motorcycle riders are more vulnerable to accidents than other motorists. This is why it is crucial to follow all traffic laws and regulations as well as best practices to reduce the likelihood of injury. Colorado law does not require you to use or possess turn signals, but it is in your best interests to use them. In this article, we will provide information on the laws regarding turn signals for motorcycles in Colorado. We will also discuss the benefits of using turn signals and provide tips for staying safe while riding.

If you sustained injuries in a motorcycle collision in Colorado, contact the personal injury lawyers at Front Range Injury Attorneys today to schedule your free consultation. Our experienced legal team are knowledgeable and zealous advocates for our clients and their cases. We treat our clients as people, not case files. Learn more about how we can help you pursue compensation for your injuries and damages. Contact our Denver law firm to learn more.

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Do Motorcycles Need Turn Signals in Colorado?

No, motorcycles in Colorado are not required to possess or use turn signals.

Colorado law requires motorcycles to possess several safety components but does not require motorcycles to possess turn signals. If your bike has turn signals, you are not required to use them on Colorado roads. Although not legally required, there are good reasons why you should use them to reduce the likelihood of a dangerous accident.

Colorado’s Motorcycle Equipment Requirements

Before riding your motorcycle, you should make sure all the parts and required safety equipment are present and functioning properly. You should check brakes, tires and fluids to avoid a dangerous vehicle breakdown. You should also check to make sure all safety equipment and lights are functional. Under Colorado Revised Statute section 42-4-208, your motorcycle must include a headlight and at least one stop light if manufactured in 1958 or later.

Additionally, any street operated motorcycle must include:

  • Separate seats and footrests for each passenger
  • Horn
  • Rear reflector
  • Brake light
  • Brake for at least one wheel
  • Rearview mirror
  • Helmets for any riders under the age of 18

One thing missing from that list is a turn signal. Colorado Revised Statute section 41-4-208(3) names motorcycles and low power scooters as exceptions to the requirement for electronic turn signals on all motor vehicles. Cars, trucks, trailers and other motor vehicles must have operational turn signals and operators can receive a ticket if they do not use them properly. Motorcyclists are not at risk of a ticket, fines, or other penalties.

The Benefits of Using Turn Signals on Motorcycles

Using turn signals is not only a legal requirement, but it also has several benefits. Here are some of the benefits of using turn signals on motorcycles:

  • Increases Visibility: Using turn signals makes you more visible to other motorists, especially when you are turning or changing lanes. It helps other drivers anticipate your movements and avoid accidents.
  • Prevents Confusion: Using turn signals helps prevent confusion among other drivers. It lets them know your intentions and reduces the risk of miscommunication or misunderstanding.
  • Reduces Accidents: Using turn signals reduces the risk of accidents by alerting other drivers to your intended movements. It gives them time to react and adjust their driving accordingly. This can be important to avoid a no-contact motorcycle accident.

Tips for Using Turn Signals on Motorcycles

Now that you know the importance of using turn signals let’s discuss some tips for using them effectively:

  • Always Use Turn Signals: Always use turn signals, even if you think no one is around. It is better to be safe than sorry, and it helps to develop good habits.
  • Use Signals Early: Use turn signals early, at least 100 feet before turning or changing lanes. This gives other drivers ample time to adjust their driving accordingly.
  • Check Signals Regularly: Check your turn signals regularly to ensure they are functioning correctly. It is also a good idea to use hand signals as a backup in case your turn signals fail.
  • Be Predictable: Be predictable in your movements, especially when riding in traffic. Use turn signals even if you think other drivers can see your intended movements.
  • Use Both Signals: Use both turn signals when changing lanes or making a U-turn. This lets other drivers know your intentions and reduces the risk of accidents.
  • Don’t Be Afraid to Signal Early: Don’t be afraid to use turn signals early, even if you think it may be too early. It is always better to be safe than sorry.

What if you are blamed for a motorcycle accident for not using a turn signal?

If you’re a motorcyclist who’s been in an accident in Colorado, you may be worried about the possibility of being blamed for the incident. One common tactic insurers may use is to claim that you failed to use a turn signal, therefore causing or contributing to the crash. However, it’s important to understand that, legally speaking, this is not a valid defense in Colorado.

Unlike cars, motorcycles are not required by Colorado law to have turn signals. As a result, failing to use a turn signal cannot be used as a basis for denying liability for an accident. It’s perfectly within your rights to ride your motorcycle without turn signals, and an insurer or defendant cannot use their absence against you. However, just because the law does not mandate turn signals on motorcycles, it doesn’t mean that insurers won’t still try to use this argument to reduce the amount of compensation you can recover. An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Denver at our firm can fight to make sure you get full and fair compensation for your case.

Comparative Negligence and Your Claim for Compensation

In Colorado, the concept of comparative negligence applies to personal injury cases, including motorcycle accidents. Comparative negligence means that the amount of compensation you’re entitled to can be reduced in proportion to your degree of fault for the accident. For example, if you’re found to be 20% at fault for a crash, your compensation award may be reduced by 20%.

If an insurer argues that you failed to use a turn signal and therefore contributed to the accident, they may try to use this as evidence of your comparative negligence. However, your lawyer can fight back against this tactic by demonstrating that there was no legal requirement for you to use a turn signal.

Why You Need a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident in Colorado, it’s crucial to consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Your lawyer can help protect your rights and work to maximize the amount of compensation you’re entitled to receive. At Front Range Injury Attorneys, our team of skilled motorcycle accident attorneys has years of experience representing clients in Denver and throughout Colorado. We understand the tactics insurers use to deny or minimize claims and can develop a strategic plan to counter these arguments.

We offer a free consultation to discuss your case and answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to learn more about your legal rights and options after a motorcycle accident.


Q1. What happens if I don’t use turn signals while riding my motorcycle in Colorado?

A1. Failing to use turn signals while riding a motorcycle in Colorado can result in a traffic violation and a fine.

Q2. Do I have to use turn signals when riding a motorcycle in Colorado, even if there is no traffic around?

A2. Yes, you must use turn signals every time you turn or change lanes, even if there is no traffic around. It is a legal requirement and helps to develop good habits.

Q3. Can I use hand signals instead of turn signals while riding my motorcycle in Colorado?

A3. No, you cannot use hand signals instead of turn signals in Colorado. While hand signals can be helpful, they are not a substitute for turn signals, which are a legal requirement.

Q4. What is the penalty for not using turn signals while riding a motorcycle in Colorado?

A4. Failing to use turn signals while riding a motorcycle in Colorado can result in a traffic violation and a fine of up to $60.

Q5. Are there any exceptions to the turn signal requirement for motorcycles in Colorado?

A5. No, there are no exceptions to the turn signal requirement for motorcycles in Colorado. All motor vehicles, including motorcycles, must be equipped with working turn signals and use them when turning or changing lanes.

Q6. Can I modify my motorcycle’s turn signals in Colorado?

A6. Yes, you can modify your motorcycle’s turn signals in Colorado, as long as they comply with the state’s requirements for turn signals.


In conclusion, using turn signals is essential for motorcycle riders in Colorado. Not only is it a legal requirement, but it also helps prevent accidents and promotes good driving habits. By using turn signals early and regularly, you can increase your visibility, prevent confusion, and reduce the risk of accidents. Remember, failing to use turn signals can result in fines and penalties, but more importantly, it can lead to accidents and injuries. So, always use turn signals when turning or changing lanes, and be a safe and responsible motorcycle rider. If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact our Denver law firm today to discuss your case.

Colorado Motorcycle Accident Attorneys

If you sustained injuries in a motorcycle crash caused by someone else’s negligence, our Colorado motorcycle accident lawyers may be able to help. Learn more about our experienced lawyers throughout the state including:

Front Range Injury Attorneys represents motorcycle collision victims in all four corners of Colorado. Contact our law firm today for a free consultation.

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