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Electric Scooters and Licensing Requirements in Texas

With the increasing popularity of electric scooters, it is essential to be aware of the licensing requirements for operating them in Texas. Whether you’re a proud owner, a casual renter, or just considering getting one, understanding the state’s regulations will help you ride safely and legally.

In Texas, the term electric scooter refers to both stand-up scooters (or e-scooters) and sit-down scooters (or electric mopeds). Licensing requirements are determined by factors such as the scooter's top speed, engine size, and rider age.

Stand-up Electric Scooters:

If you're using a stand-up electric scooter, generally speaking, you do not need a license to operate it on public roads. These scooters have low top speeds (usually around 15 mph) and are typically allowed in bike lanes, sidewalks, and some streets without the need for a driver's license. However, riders must be at least 16 years old, wear a helmet, and follow local traffic laws.

Sit-down Electric Scooters (Electric Mopeds):

For sit-down electric scooters, or electric mopeds, the requirements are different. If your scooter has a top speed over 20 mph and an engine size of 50cc or more, it is classified as a motorcycle in Texas and requires a Class M license. Riders must be at least 15 years old, pass a basic motorcycle training course, and obtain a motorcycle endorsement on their regular driver's license.

However, if your electric moped has a top speed of 20 mph or less and an engine size of less than 50cc, you may operate it without a Class M license. Instead, you need a valid driver's license of any class. Helmets are required for riders under 21 years of age, and the scooter must be registered and insured.

In conclusion, stand-up electric scooters typically do not require a license when used responsibly on public roads, while sit-down electric scooters may or may not require special licensing, depending on their top speed and engine size. Always check your local statutes and ordinances for specific regulations, and remember to always put safety first when scooting through Texas.

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