Bicycle Registration and Secondhand Sale of Bicycles

I heard that it’s illegal for me to ride my bicycle without registration. Is this true?

Yes, but only if your city of residence requires registration. Cleveland Heights, Shaker Heights, South Euclid and University Heights require that bicyclists have proof of registration if they live within the city’s limits. If you live in a city that doesn’t require registration, then you’re not liable. (373.11) 

You can register your bicycle at your city’s police station.

Nearby cities that require bicycle registration:


City Registration Required? Ordinance
Beachwood Law not found.  
Bedford Heights No: repealed in 2003 373.15
Brooklyn Yes 373.11
Cleveland Yes 473.11
Cleveland Heights Yes 373.11
East Cleveland Law not found.  
Garfield Heights Yes 373.12
Highland Heights Yes 373.08
Lakewood Yes 373.16
Lyndhurst Yes 474.04
Maple Heights Yes 474.11
Mayfield Heights Yes 373.04
Parma Yes 373.11
Richmond Heights Law not found.  
Shaker Heights Yes 1173.13
South Euclid Yes 373.12
University Heights Yes 444.12
Warrensville Heights Law not found.  
How much does it cost to register my bicycle?

In Cleveland Heights, it costs $2.00 to register your bike. However, if you have proof that you own a helmet, or pledge to wear a helmet while riding your bicycle, registration is free (373.12a and b).

What if I lose my bicycle registration?

The city is required to provide you with a new license, but it will cost you $1.00 (373.13).

Am I allowed to remove the serial number from my bicycle frame?

No (373.14).

Can I sell or buy my bicycle on

Yes, you may, but you’re required by law to report to the city:

  • The name and address of the individual to whom you sold or bought your bicycle.
  • The name, make, color, and serial number of the bicycle (373.15).

You’re also permitted to remove the registration sticker or tag when you sell the bicycle (373.16).

If the police find my bicycle, and are unable to find evidence of registration, are they allowed to impound my bike?

Yes, but you can recover your bicycle from the city if you pay a $15.00 fee (373.18). If you don’t pick up your bike within 30 days, the city has the right to sell it at a public auction. The city is required to give notice of any auction by publishing in the newspaper within ten days of the auction (373.18).

I’m under the age of 18. Can the police impound my bicycle if I break the law?

Yes, the police may take your bicycle (373.17). Your parents or legal guardians can retrieve your bicycle from the police.

Other Bicycle Law Sections: