Do You Need a License for an Electric Scooter?


Electric scooters are a great, increasingly popular form of transportation. You can travel around your city or take a cruise to go have fun with your friends. Electric scooters are environmentally friendly, and you don’t have to keep filling their gas tanks – and boy, is gas getting expensive these days!

You just have to charge the battery, and they’re ready for use. Electric scooters don’t emit any harmful gases that damage your health and the environment. 

Despite the many advantages of electric scooters, many people do not use them because they are confused about electric scooters’ rules and regulations. Most states have avoided setting clear regulations in place, leading to a lot of confusion.

One of the frequently asked questions by most of the readers in our comment section is, do you need a license for an electric scooter. Unfortunately, the answer is not a simple yes or no! 

In some states, you need a driver’s license while riding an electric scooter on the streets, while in others, you don’t. The answer, therefore, depends on where you live.

So in this article, I will discuss the rules and regulations of various states in the United States and whether you are permitted to drive on streets without a driver’s license.

Are Electric Scooters Street Legal in Texas?

You can legally drive on both bike lanes and sidewalks in Texas. Your electric scooter should have two wheels and a deck where you can stand and ride. The motor power must not be above 900 W. The top speed must not exceed 30 mph.

You can drive on sidewalks in Texas, but the Texas legislature will soon pass senate bill 549, which will ban electric scooter riding on sidewalks. Riding an electric scooter on the sidewalk is dangerous both for pedestrians and riders. You can sustain a severe injury, so it’s better to avoid it.

Do You Need a License for an Electric Scooter in Texas?

When it comes to needing a license, you don’t currently require a driver’s license to drive an electric scooter in Texas. Texas transportation code 551.352 has not set an age limit for an electric scooter. It is expected in coming years that Senate bill 549 is going to set an age limit for driving an electric scooter on the street.

Woman across the street with her escooter

Currently, there are no strict rules for requiring a driver’s license. So people of any age can enjoy riding their electric scooter on the roads of Texas. However, when children drive an electric scooter on the road, it can be dangerous. There may be unexpected accidents. So for safety purposes, they should wear a helmet, knee pads, and other essential accessories. If you want to rent an electric scooter from one of the many rental companies in Texas, however, you will require a driver’s license.

Are Electric Scooters Legal in California?

Yes, they are legal. If you are going to ride an electric scooter in California, you should first read CVC§ 407.5 to know all the rules and regulations in California. This law clearly states that: 

  • Your electric scooter should be a two-wheel device with handlebars and a floorboard where you can stand and drive. 
  • Your electric scooter should receive power from the motor but should have an option for human propulsion. 

You can drive your electric scooters on bike lanes in California. If you do not find any bike lane on the road, you can ride on the street, but only those with a speed limit of 25 mph.

The scooter itself must remain at or below 15 mph. You cannot drive your electric scooter on the sidewalks of California. If you have parked your electric scooter on a sidewalk and want to take it out for a ride on the street, that is permitted by the authorities.

According to CVC§21223, if you are riding an electric scooter during the nighttime on the highway, then: 

  • Your electric scooter should have a lamp that will emit light. 
  • At the same time, the light should be visible from a distance of 300 feet in front and on the sides of the electric scooter. 
  • You should have a red reflector on the rear end of your electric scooter.
  • The reflector should be visible from a distance of 500 feet.
  • It should also have a white or yellow reflector on the sides, visible at a distance of 200 feet.

If you are under 18 years old, then you must wear a helmet. I suggest people of all age groups wear a helmet while riding an electric scooter because it is a critical safety accessory and will protect you from injuries to your head and face. 

Most Razor electric scooters do not meet California law because they don’t have a headlight. You need to follow all the rules stated above to drive a Razor electric scooter in California.

Do You Need a License for an Electric Scooter in California?

According to the California vehicle code (CVC 21235), you need a driver’s license to drive an electric scooter in California. 

California allows people over 16-years-old to drive legally on the streets, but they should have a driver’s license or learner’s permit. 

If authorities find you riding an electric scooter without a driver’s license, you may need to pay a fine of $200. While you do need a driver’s license:

  • You don’t need to register your electric vehicle or license plate. 
  • Insurance is not mandatory.

Are Electric Scooters Legal in New York?

As of 2 August 2020, you can legally drive electric scooters on some streets and highways of New York State. 

You can drive your electric scooter on roads and highways with a speed limit of 30 mph or less. You cannot drive on sidewalks in New York.

You must be older than 16 to drive an electric scooter on the road. If you are under 18 and driving, you have to wear a helmet.

Do You Need a License for an Electric Scooter in New York?

The department of motor vehicles in New York divided scooters and mopeds into three classes based on their maximum speed.

ClassTop SpeedLicense
A30-40 mphMandatory
B20-30 mphNo license
CBelow 20 mphNo license

Most electric scooters usually have a top speed of less than 20 mph. So, you don’t require a driver’s license while driving an electric scooter on the streets.

Are Electric Scooters Legal in Florida?

Yes, they are legal. On 23 October 2019, the governor legalized electric scooters on the streets of Florida. You must be at least 16 to drive an electric scooter on the roads of Florida. You can drive in bike lanes but not on sidewalks. The top speed of your electric vehicle must not exceed 15 mph.

Do You Need a License for an Electric Scooter in Florida?

You do not need a driver’s license to drive an electric scooter in Florida.

Are Electric Scooters Legal in Indiana?

Yes, it is legal to drive an electric scooter in Indiana. The top speed of your electric vehicle must not exceed 20 mph. Also, the weight of your scooter must be less than 100 lb. You can drive in both bike lanes and streets.

Woman wearing a jacket crosses the street with electric scooter

You are not allowed to ride your electric bike on the sidewalks of Indiana.

Do You Need a License for an Electric Scooter in Indiana?

The rider must be at least 16-years-old and have a valid driver’s license, instructions permit, or state identification card to drive an electric scooter in Indiana.

Are Electric Scooters Legal in Georgia?

Yes, it is legal to drive an electric scooter in Georgia. The top speed of your electric vehicle should be less than 35 mph. Also, if you are younger than 16, you must wear a helmet while riding. Finally, you can drive on bike paths and bike lanes on the streets of Georgia, but you can’t ride on sidewalks.

Do You Need a License for an Electric Scooter in Georgia?

You don’t need a driver’s license, insurance, or registration for an electric scooter in Georgia.

Ride With Common Sense

You need to follow a few essential tips or use your common sense while riding an electric scooter. The following points are not laws or written on any paper, but you can avoid accidents or injuries by following them.

  • You need to be aware of pedestrians while riding an electric scooter on roads.
  • Obey the traffic lights while riding on the street.
  • If you are riding in the dark, your electric scooter should have a white headlight and a red reflector.
  • You should ride slowly on the street to avoid accidents.
  • Try to use bike lanes when you are driving on the road.
  • Always wear a helmet while driving.

Conclusion

The electric scooter is becoming popular not only in the United States but also all over the world. It has immense benefits, so more people are opting to ride an electric scooter on the road.

The problem is the laws for the electric scooter differ from one state to another, which confuses people. I advise you to check your state’s rules and then the rule of your locality before purchasing an electric scooter. If the laws are not clearly defined, you may contact local groups in your city or legislature to know about the rules and regulations for an electric scooter.

If your State allows you to drive an electric scooter, purchase it and have fun while riding! Don’t forget to comment and offer any suggestions you have for this article. I would love to read them.

Happy Riding.

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