INFORMATION FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF LEGAL AFFAIRS
REGULATION OF MOTORIZED SCOOTERS
office previously issued an opinion on March 18, 2002, as to the legality of operating
motorized scooters, or go-peds, on the roadways of this state. The legislature
has just amended the statute addressing this issue which now requires us to alter
Prior to July 1, 2002, a motorized
scooter was included in the definition of motor vehicles and as such, was subject
to the equipment and operating laws applicable to all motor vehicles. The Attorney
General of Florida, as well as multiple courts, issued opinions consistent with
our prior opinion.
As of July 1, 2002, the
legislator specifically excluded motorized scooters from the definition of motor
vehicles for the purpose of Chapter 316, Florida Statutes. As a result,
motorized scooters are not subject to the equipment and safe driving requirements
of a motor vehicle contained in that chapter.
316.003(21), Florida Statutes has been amended to define motor vehicles
[a]ny self-propelled vehicle not
operated upon rails or guideway, but not including any bicycle, motorized scooter,
electric personal assistive mobility device, or moped.
legislature also added subsection (82) §316.003, F.S., which defines motorized
Any vehicle not having
a seat or saddle for the use of a rider, designed to travel on not more than three
wheels, and not capable or propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than 30 miles
per hour on level ground.
As the law currently
stands, a motorized scooter does not fall within the definition of moped, motorcycle,
or motor vehicle, and as such, the laws governing operation of such vehicles do
not apply to motorized scooters.
the definition of motor vehicle contained in §322.01(26), F.S.,
was not amended and under this definition, the operator of a motorized scooter
is required to posses a drivers license.
there is conflict between Motor Vehicle Statute (Ch.316) and the Drivers License
Statute (Ch. 322) as to the definition of a motor vehicle and how it relates to
motorized scooters. The Attorney General of Florida has issued a similar opinion,
concluding that the legislature may wish to readdress these issues and clarify
its intent regarding the operation of motorized scooters in this state.
Copies of the AG Opinion may be obtained from my office upon request.
As a result of the new legislation, effective
July 1, 2002, motorized scooters are specifically excluded from the definition
of motor vehicles for purposes of Chapter 316, F.S., and therefore
are not subject to the equipment and safe driving requirements of a motor vehicle
contained in that chapter.