State by State Guide to Moped Laws in 2022

If you commute to work or simply do not feel like driving your car everywhere, then getting a moped is a great, eco-conscious alternative. However, before you purchase one, it is important to understand the moped laws in your state.

Mopeds are interesting vehicles in that each state treats them differently. Some states consider mopeds to be of the same class as motorcycles, while others do not even require riders to have a driver’s license. Some states mandate registration and liability insurance, while other states do not. Some states define mopeds as motorized bicycles with pedals, while others care less about pedals and more about engine size. If you plan on purchasing a moped in your state, you should learn about your potential responsibilities. You may have to check several boxes before legally operating a moped in your state of residence.

Moped Laws in Each State in 2022

Generally speaking, two-wheel vehicles that have 50cc engines or smaller and cannot travel over 30 to 35 miles per hour are considered mopeds. Depending on the state, the definition may or may not include pedals. States also have their own rules regarding moped safety and ownership. For example, some states required registration and insurance, while others do not. Some states require a motorcycle endorsement on a driver’s license, others do not require a license at all to operate a moped. Because of the variation from state to state, it is important to check whether your vehicle qualifies as a moped, and, if so, what rules you must follow.

Moped Laws in Alabama

In Alabama, residents need a motorcycle license to ride a moped. Teens between the ages of 14 and 15 can get a B restriction license to ride a moped that’s valid for four years in Alabama. A standard driver’s license is not sufficient.

Moped owners need insurance to operate their vehicles and must wear a helmet and other protective gear. In Alabama, mopeds and motorcycles are categorized as motor-driven cycles, so the rules for both types of vehicles are the same.

Moped Laws in Alaska

If you plan to operate a moped in Alaska, you will need to apply for a Class M1 motorcycle license. If you already have a valid driver’s license, you can apply for an endorsement that will allow you to legally ride a moped in Alaska.

Moped owners in Alaska must register and insure their mopeds. Riders are also required to wear protective eye gear or have a windscreen affixed to their mopeds in Alaska. There are no helmet safety laws in Alaska for moped riders over 18.

Moped Laws in Arizona

In Arizona, mopeds are considered motor-driven cycles. Because of that, moped owners need to purchase liability insurance and register their vehicles. That said, you won’t need a special license to operate a moped in Arizona. A standard driver’s license is sufficient. If you are under 18, you must wear a helmet while operating a moped in Arizona.

Moped Laws in Arkansas

To operate a moped in Arkansas, you will need a Class M or Class MD license, depending on your age. Motorists must also purchase liability insurance for their mopeds. Arkansas doesn’t require moped drivers to wear a helmet or eye protection but does prohibit passengers from riding on a moped.

Moped Laws in California

Before you can start riding around California on your moped, you must get an M1 or M2 motorcycle license and register your moped with the Department of Motor Vehicles. Moped owners in California also need liability insurance in case of an accident. Helmets are always required while riding a moped regardless of an operator’s age.

Moped Laws in Colorado

To drive a moped in Colorado, residents need a valid driver’s license. Registration is also necessary for mopeds in Colorado. To successfully register your vehicle, you must provide proof of liability insurance. When riding your moped throughout Colorado, you won’t be required to wear a helmet if you are above the age of 18. However, eye protection is mandatory for moped riders in Colorado.

Moped Laws in Connecticut

In Connecticut, moped drivers do not have to register their vehicles with the Department of Motor Vehicles. Connecticut only requires a standard driver’s license for residents to operate a moped. Moped owners must always wear a helmet while riding around Connecticut. Mopeds allowed to operate in the right lane, except when making a left turn, because of their lack of speed. As long as your moped meets Connecticut’s criteria for a motor-driven cycle, you will not have to purchase liability insurance for your vehicle.

Moped Laws in Delaware

Liability insurance is not required for mopeds in Delaware. Riders do not need a special license to operate their mopeds either. All you have to do to legally own and operate a moped in Delaware is have a valid driver’s license and register your vehicle with the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles. Anyone below 18 is required to wear an approved helmet while operating a moped in Delaware.

Moped Laws in Florida

To legally ride a moped in Florida, you will need a Class E driver’s license or a motorcycle license and be above the age of 16. In Florida, moped riders over 16 are not required to wear a helmet. Florida also doesn’t mandate liability insurance for moped owners. In Florida, residents can ride their mopeds on public roads but not highways.

Moped Laws in Georgia

You will need a valid driver’s license or learner’s permit to legally operate a moped in Georgia. Mopeds are restricted to public roads with a speed limit of 35 miles per hour or less. These vehicles do not need to be registered with Georgia Department of Driver Services or be insured. That said, regardless of age, moped riders must wear a helmet at all times in Georgia.

Moped Laws in Hawaii

You will need a valid motorcycle license to operate a moped in Hawaii. Rides must also register their vehicles and get at least the minimum requirements for liability insurance. If you are under the age of 18, you must wear a helmet affixed with a chin strap when operating a moped in Hawaii. If you are an adult, you are not required to wear a helmet, but you do need to wear safety goggles or have a windshield affixed to your moped.

Moped Laws in Idaho

If you own a moped in Idaho, you do not need a special license to operate it. You only need a valid driver’s license to ride a moped in Idaho. Liability insurance is only required for moped owners in Idaho if their vehicles meet the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards for motorcycles and take the necessary steps to get approval to ride a highway. Otherwise, mopeds do not need to be insured in Idaho.

Moped Laws in Illinois

Mopeds in Illinois must be titled and registered before being legally operated. If your vehicle is considered a moped, you will only need a valid Illinois driver’s license. Liability insurance is also mandatory if you plan to ride a moped in Illinois. Helmets are not required, but some sort of eye protection is. Eye protection for moped riders can be in the form of glasses, goggles, or a windshield.

Moped Laws in Indiana

In Indiana, moped riders need either a valid driver’s license or a Class B MDC endorsement. This endorsement allows individuals without a license aged 15 or older to operate a moped in Indiana legally. While you must register your moped with the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles, you won’t need to purchase liability insurance for your moped in Indiana.

Mopeds can only ride on streets with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour. Riding a moped on highways or bike paths is not allowed in Indiana. Riders must wear a helmet if they’re under 18 and some form of eye protection is required, regardless of age.

Moped Laws in Iowa

If you are an adult in Iowa with a valid driver’s license, you do not need to get a special permit to operate a moped. However, if you are under 18 or older and do not have a driver’s license, you must get a moped permit in Iowa. Mopeds need to be registered and insured in Iowa. Currently, moped riders in Iowa are not required to wear a helmet.

Moped Laws in Kansas

You can legally operate a moped in Kansas if you have a standard driver’s license or a moped license. Before you begin riding, you must get your vehicle registered and insured. Moped riders in Kansas must wear a helmet at all times while under the age of 18. You can operate your moped in Kansas on highways, provided you heed strict safety regulations.

Moped Laws in Kentucky

In Kentucky, residents are required to have a valid driver’s license or moped license in order to operate a moped. You do not need to register your moped or purchase liability insurance in Kentucky. If you are under the age of 21, you must wear a helmet while operating a moped in Kentucky.

Moped Laws in Louisiana

Moped owners in Louisiana must have a valid driver’s license to operate their vehicles. Those between the ages of 15 and 16 with learner’s permits can ride a moped in Louisiana. However, they must be within three miles of their homes while operating a moped unless a parent is with them. Louisiana requires liability insurance for mopeds and that riders wear a helmet affixed with chin straps at all times.

Moped Laws in Maine

In Maine, you need either a valid driver’s or moped license to operate a moped. You must also register your moped before beginning riding it around Maine. Generally, mopeds have to drive on the farthest right side of the road in Maine, other than when making a left turn.

You must purchase liability insurance for your moped if you live in Maine. Riders and passengers under the age of 18 must wear helmets on a moped at all times in Maine.

Moped Laws in Maryland

If you own a moped in Maryland, you must get it titled and insured before you can legally operate it. You must also have a valid driver’s license or a moped operator’s permit to ride your vehicle in Maryland. Maryland requires that all moped riders wear a helmet and eye protection when operating their vehicles, regardless of age.

Moped Laws in Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, moped operators do not need a special license beyond a valid driver’s license to ride their vehicles. Mopeds owners must register their vehicles in Massachusetts but do not need to purchase liability insurance like motorcyclists. That said, all moped riders must wear a helmet while operating their vehicles in Massachusetts.

Moped Laws in Michigan

You must be at least 15 years old and have a valid driver’s license or moped license to operate a moped in Michigan. Moped owners are not required to purchase liability insurance for their vehicles but must register them. Moped registration must be renewed every three years in Michigan. Moped riders under the age of 19 must wear a helmet at all times, while those above 19 can decide for themselves.

Moped Laws in Minnesota

Moped owners in Minnesota must get their vehicles titled and registered. It is also mandatory that you purchase liability insurance in the event you cause an accident while riding your moped in Minnesota. If you are under 18, you must wear a helmet on your moped at all times. Like many other states, Minnesota does not require a special license to operate a moped. Riders only need a Minnesota driver’s license or a moped permit.

Moped Laws in Mississippi

You will need a motorcycle endorsement for your driver’s license to ride your moped around Mississippi legally. You may also need to purchase liability insurance if your moped meets Mississippi’s criteria. Mississippi moped riders also need to wear a helmet at all times, regardless of their age.

Moped Laws in Missouri

Generally, you do not need a special license or endorsement in addition to your driver’s license to operate a moped in Missouri. That said, if your moped exceeds the criteria of motorized bikes in Missouri, it may be considered a motorcycle. In that case, you will need to obtain a motorcycle license to legally operate your moped in Missouri.

If your vehicle meets Missouri’s criteria for mopeds, you will not need to get liability insurance. In addition, riders do not need to wear a helmet while operating a moped in Missouri.

Moped Laws in Montana

In Montana, moped owners need a driver’s license to operate their vehicles. Riders also need liability insurance for mopeds in Montana. Those under 18 are required to wear a helmet at all times when operating a moped, while those over 18 are not. Mopeds in Montana must be ridden as far right as possible on public roads. Eye protection is recommended though not mandatory for moped riders in Montana.

Moped Laws in Nebraska

Nebraska defines a moped as a motor vehicle with pedals, whereas some other states do not. If moped owners in Nebraska keep the pedals on their vehicles, they are not required to title or register their mopeds. However, if you remove the pedals, your moped would then meet the definition of a motorcycle. In that case, you must title and register your vehicle and get a motorcycle license or endorsement on your driver’s license. You must also purchase liability insurance and wear a helmet affixed with a chin strap in Nebraska.

Moped Laws in Nevada

Moped owners in Nevada only need a valid driver’s license to operate their vehicles. Liability insurance is not required for mopeds, but riders must wear a helmet. It is important to note that you must register your moped if you wish to ride on public streets in Nevada.

Moped Laws in New Hampshire

In New Hampshire, mopeds must be registered before residents can operate them on public roads. Riders need a valid driver’s or moped license but do not need a motorcycle license to operate a moped in New Hampshire. Moped riders are not required to wear a helmet or carry liability insurance in New Hampshire.

Moped Laws in New Jersey

If you own a moped in New Jersey, you must have a valid driver’s license, vehicle registration, and liability insurance. Moped riders are also required to wear a helmet at all times in New Jersey.

Moped Laws in New Mexico

In New Mexico, moped owners do not need to title or register their vehicles. However, if your vehicle even slightly exceeds New Mexico’s criteria for mopeds, it may be considered a motorcycle. In that case, you will need to title and register your moped.

If not, you will only need a New Mexico driver’s license or a moped permit to operate your vehicle. Moped owners are not required to purchase liability insurance in New Mexico. Moped riders under 18 must wear a helmet at all times.

Moped Laws in New York

Generally, mopeds are considered Class B motorized bikes in New York. To meet the criteria, your moped may not exceed 30 miles per hour. If your moped is considered a Class B motorized bike in New York, you can operate it with a valid driver’s license. You must register your moped and purchase liability insurance in New York. Moped drivers in New York must wear a helmet and eye protection, regardless of age.

Moped Laws in North Carolina

In North Carolina, mopeds must be registered but do not need to be titled. Moped riders do have to purchase liability insurance in North Carolina. Surprisingly, North Carolina does not require residents to have a valid driver’s license to operate a moped. That said, there are some requirements. For example, riders must be at least 16 and adhere to all normal traffic laws in North Carolina. That includes wearing a helmet at all times.

Moped Laws in North Dakota

In North Dakota, moped riders need only a valid driver’s license or a motorized bicycle permit to operate a moped. Teenagers as young as 14 can apply for a moped permit in North Dakota. Mopeds must be registered and titled, and North Dakota riders must carry liability insurance. You must wear a helmet while riding a moped in North Dakota if you are under the age of 18.

Moped Laws in Ohio

If you own a moped in Ohio, you must register, title, and tag it. Helmets with chin straps are required for moped riders under 18 in Ohio. All mopeds need at least one rearview mirror, and riders must stay close to the right edge of the road when possible. Riders need only a valid driver’s or moped license to operate their vehicles in Ohio. Mopeds do not need to be insured in Ohio.

Moped Laws in Oklahoma

In Oklahoma, moped owners must register and tag their vehicles. Oklahoma requires moped riders to have a valid driver’s license or a motorized bicycle license to operate a moped. All moped riders under the age of 18 are required to wear a helmet at all times. Mopeds may not be operated on highways in Oklahoma and must abide by all regular motor vehicle laws.

Moped Laws in Oregon

Moped owners in Oregon must have a valid driver’s or moped license to operate their vehicles safely. You must also register your moped if you wish to operate it in Oregon. To legally ride your moped on public roads in Oregon, you must get liability insurance for your vehicle. All moped riders are required to wear a helmet. Passengers are not allowed on mopeds in Oregon.

Moped Laws in Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, moped owners need a valid driver’s license. Mopeds must also be titled, registered, and insured in Pennsylvania. All those under the age of 21 must wear a helmet at all times while operating a moped in Pennsylvania. It’s also important to note that by Pennsylvania’s definition, mopeds have pedals. If your vehicle is without pedals and can go faster than 25 miles per hour, it may not be considered a moped in Pennsylvania.

Moped Laws in Rhode Island

To legally operate a moped in Rhode Island, you will need a valid driver’s license. You must also register your moped with the Rhode Island Department of Revenue’s Division of Motor Vehicles. Rhode Island moped owners must also purchase insurance for their vehicles. Those under the age of 21 must wear a helmet while operating a moped in Rhode Island.

Moped Laws in South Carolina

You can legally operate a moped in South Carolina if you have a valid driver’s license. Residents can also apply for a special moped license if they do not have a standard license. Moped owners must register their vehicles and obtain a license plate. That said, you do not need to purchase liability insurance for your moped in South Carolina. Like many other states, South Carolina prohibits mopeds from riding on highways and requires that all moped riders under 21 wear a helmet.

Moped Laws in South Dakota

In South Dakota, residents must have a valid driver’s license to operate a moped. It is also important to note that you must register your moped in South Dakota. Mopeds must be insured as well. All those under 18 must wear a helmet while riding a moped, including passengers. South Dakota requires riders to wear eye protection while operating a moped unless their vehicle is affixed with a windscreen.

Moped Laws in Tennessee

In Tennessee, liability insurance is mandatory for all mopeds. You must also register and title your moped in Tennessee. Residents must also have a valid driver’s license to operate their vehicles. Moped riders in Tennessee are required to wear a helmet at all times, regardless of their age.

Moped Laws in Texas

In Texas, mopeds must be insured, registered, and tagged before residents can legally operate them. Liability insurance is also required for mopeds in Texas. Texas residents only need a valid driver’s license to ride a moped on public roads. All riders must wear a helmet, regardless of age, unless they pass a special safety course with the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles and provide proof of health insurance.

Moped Laws in Utah

Before you can ride your moped on public roads in Utah, you must title and register it. Liability insurance is also required for mopeds in Utah. All those below the age of 21 must wear a helmet while riding a moped in Utah.

Moped Laws in Vermont

Moped owners in Vermont only need a valid driver’s license to operate their vehicles. Vermont requires mopeds to be registered and insured in case an accident occurs. Helmets are mandatory for all moped riders in Vermont.

Moped Laws in Virginia

To legally operate a moped on public roads in Virginia, you must get it titled and registered. In Virginia, moped riders must be at least 16 years old and must carry a valid government-issued photo ID when operating a vehicle. That said, the photo ID in question does not have to be a driver’s license and can be simply a state ID card. All moped riders must wear a helmet, regardless of age. Residents may not operate their vehicles on highways in Virginia.

Moped Laws in Washington

In the State of Washington, mopeds must be registered and tagged. Moped riders also need a valid driver’s license. Liability insurance is not required for mopeds in Washington. Riders must always wear a helmet while operating their mopeds in Washington, regardless of their age.

Moped Laws in Washington, D.C.

In Washington, D.C., moped owners must abide by the same registration and titling processes s motorcycle owners. You must have liability insurance for your moped and, like most other places in the United States, are not permitted to drive your vehicle on sidewalks, paths, or freeways. Moped riders must also wear a helmet at all times in Washington, D.C.

Moped Laws in West Virginia

In West Virginia, moped owners must get their vehicles titled, registered, and insured before driving on public roads. Riders only need a valid West Virginia driver’s license to operate a moped. Helmets are also required for all moped riders in West Virginia.

Moped Laws in Wisconsin

Before you can operate your moped in Wisconsin, you will need to get it registered and titled. Riders only need a valid Wisconsin driver’s license or moped license to operate their vehicles legally. Wisconsin requires all mopeds to carry liability insurance but doesn’t require riders to wear a helmet.

Moped Laws in Wyoming

You will need a valid driver’s license to ride a moped on public roads in Wyoming. Wyoming’s moped laws can be complicated. To fully understand your responsibilities as a moped owner, ask an attorney or the Wyoming Department of Transportation. You can face serious consequences if you fail to get your moped registered and insured when required.