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Moped Laws in Texas

Posted on 11/08/23

Individuals in Texas may choose to operate a moped for a variety of reasons, but they need to know the laws surrounding these types of vehicles before hitting the roadway. If you plan to operate a moped in Texas, we encourage you to do your research on the exact traffic regulations set forth by the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles. Otherwise, you risk receiving a traffic citation or, worse, getting involved in a preventable accident.

Mopeds Classified Under the Law

When we examine Texas law, we can see that mopeds are referred to as low-powered scooters that have internal combustion engines. The state defines these as self-propelled vehicles with pedals but no more than three wheels. The moped must have a cylinder capacity of less than 50 cubic centimeters (CCs) if powered by a traditional engine or a wattage of less than 4,476 watts if powered by electricity.

Moped Licenses for Legal Operation

In Texas, individuals must have a valid driver’s license in order to operate a moped. However, individuals will not need a special class of license in order to operate their moped, unlike the situation for motorcycle operators. Individuals who operate a motorcycle do have to have a special Class M endorsement. 

In order to operate mopeds on public roads in Texas, it must be registered, and the operator must have insurance. Individuals can register their motorcycle for an annual registration fee of $30.30, and registration and title are required to obtain insurance. Individuals must obtain and maintain the following minimums of moped coverage:

  • $30,000 in bodily injury per person
  • $60,000 in total bodily injury per accident
  • $25,000 in property damage per accident

Wearing a Helmet When Operating a Moped in Texas

Individuals 21 years of age and older do not have to wear a helmet when driving or riding on a moped in Texas if they meet an eligible exception. The exceptions:

  • If a moped rider carries health insurance that covers motorcycle accident injuries
  • If the rider has completed an approved motorcycle operator training course

Every moped operator under the age of 21 is required to wear a helmet, regardless of any exemptions.

Driving a Moped on the Highway 

Moped operators are required to abide by the same laws as other vehicles on the roadway, but moped operators are not allowed to drive on any Interstate in Texas. In most situations, mopeds can be driven on standard roadways, including city streets or residential neighborhood roads. However, it is illegal to operate a moped on the sidewalk. Mopeds can be driven in designated bicycle lanes. 

What if an Accident Happens?

If you or somebody you care about sustains an injury in a moped accident caused by the actions of another driver, we encourage you to reach out to an accident attorney in Laredo as soon as possible. Unfortunately, these incidents often lead to others involved trying to blame the moped driver for the incident, regardless of who was at fault. When you work with an attorney, you will have an advocate standing by your side, helping you file a claim against the alleged negligent party. Injured moped riders and passengers may be able to recover compensation for their medical bills, lost wages, property damage expenses, and pain and suffering damages if another driver was at fault.