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Q

What driving qualifications do I need to drive a 50cc moped and were do I go do get these qualifications?


A

State laws differ widely in regards to the definition of a moped, if it must be registered and titled and if you need a certain type of license or endorsement to operate a moped on the roadways. Due to the varying state laws you will need to contact your state's Department of Motor Vehicles to find out if a moped needs to be registered and insured and what type of license, endorsement or qualifications in general you must have to operate the moped.

Here are some example of state laws:

In South Dakota a moped (50cc or smaller) is defined as a motor driven cycle equipped with two or three wheels. If a combustion engine is used, the maximum piston or rotor displacement shall be 50cc, regardless of the number of chambers in such power source. The power source shall be equipped with a power drive system that functions directly or automatically only, not requiring clutching or shifting by the operator after the drive system is engaged.

The SD Motor Vehicles Division of the Department of Revenue and Regulation states that an Application for Motor Vehicle Title and Registration may be completed and filed in the county of the applicant's residence for a moped of 50cc or less.

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South Dakota Statutes notes that when operating on the public streets or highways, drivers operating a vehicle officially classified as a moped are not required to have a special motorcycle driver license or endorsement, but must have a valid South Dakota car / truck (Class 1) driver license

In Florida if a vehicle is powered by a motor with a displacement of more than 50 cubic centimeters, the operator must have a motorcycle endorsement. If 50cc or less, these vehicles are not motorcycles by driver license law definition, so a motorcycle endorsement is not needed per FS 322.03(4).

FL states that if a motor vehicle is 50 cc or less, 2 brake horsepower or less, and can not exceed more than 30 mph on level ground, no helmet is required for the operator. The driver though must be at least 16 years old and hold at least a regular operator license (Class E or "Motorcycle Only" license). This is because even though these vehicles are 50cc or less, they still fall under the driver license law definition of "Motor Vehicles" and a driver license is required to operate a "motor vehicle" according to chapter 322 of Florida Statutes. And any passenger under 16 must wear a helmet.

In Arkansas every bicycle with an automatic transmission and a motor which does not displace in excess of fifty cubic centimeter (50cc), it is classified as a motorized bicycle.

The AR Code gives the regulations for operating a motorized bicycle. It states that the operators of motorized bicycles shall be subject to all state and local traffic laws, ordinances, and regulations and that it is unlawful for any person to operate a motorized bicycle upon interstate highways, limited access highways, or sidewalks. It also is unlawful for any person to operate a motorized bicycle upon a public street or highway within this state unless the person has a certificate to operate such a vehicle.

To operate a motorized bicycle in Arkansas, you need to be at least 10 years old and have a Motorized Bicycle Certificate. You do not however need to have this certificate if you already have a Class A, B, C, D, M, or MD license, or an Intermediate or Learner's permit.

To obtain this restricted certificate, you will need to pass the vision, knowledge, and skills test. If you have passed the Motorcycle Safety Foundation Riders Course within 90 days of your MD license application, you will need to take the skills test. Without the proper certificate, operators are subject to misdemeanor penalties, and the scooter may be impounded. 

So as you can see the laws regarding moped, scooters and other two-wheeled vehicles differ greatly from state to state as do the requirements for the driver.You state may require just a normal driver's license or a motorcycle endorsement or you may need a special certificate. Check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles to get information on your state's laws and requirements for a 50cc moped and how to get licensed/qualified to operate it.

If your state requires you to carry insurance on your moped, get a quote here for your insurance needs.


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