Get to Know the Scooter Laws in Connecticut
This article is about Connecticut scooter laws and the Connecticut motorcycle endorsement regulations that you will need to know.
Each state is different, so don't assume that because Idaho requires licensing of scooters 50cc and smaller, that Connecticut does too. Here, we will give you a brief introduction and overview of the motor scooter laws for Connecticut. Then, at the end of the page, you'll find a link for more detailed information on Connecticut scooter laws.
Please remember: The info here is only a guideline and only for Connecticut. Laws are subject to change. It's your responsibility to know what the law is in your own state.
In terms of the motorcycle endorsement I mentioned above, what that means is that in addition to a driver's license (which is almost always going to be a prerequisite to getting a motor scooter license), you get an add-on endorsement to that license that allows you to drive a motorcycle or other 2-wheeled motorized vehicle like a gas scooter.
Overview of Connecticut Scooter Laws
First, it's important to understand the definitions in Connecticut for the following terms:
Motorcycle means a motor vehicle, with or without a side car, having not more than three wheels in contact with the ground and a saddle or seat on which the rider sits or a platform on which the rider stands and includes bicycles having a motor attached, except bicycles propelled by means of a helper motor (moped) as defined in Connecticut State Law Title 14 Sec 14-286, but does not include a vehicle having a completely or partially enclosed driver’s seat and a motor which is not in the enclosed area.
A "bicycle with helper motor" (also known as a moped or noped) includes all vehicles propelled by the person riding the same by foot, or by hand power, or a helper motor having a capacity of less than fifty cubic centimeters piston displacement and not rated more than two brake horsepower and capable of a maximum speed of no more than thirty miles per hour and equipped with automatic transmission. The bicycle with helper motor is prohibited from operation on sidewalks under Connecticut State Law Title 14 Sec. 14-286.
Many motor scooters are motorcycles and would require a registration and motorcycle operator’s license to operate on the road. Some motor scooters fall under the definition of a "bicycle with helper motor" (moped) as found in Connecticut State Law Title 14 Sec. 14-286. A "bicycle with a helper motor" would not be required to be registered, however, it would require that the operator have a valid driver's license to operate on the road. The legal age to obtain a driver's license in Connecticut is 16 years of age.
In order for any scooter to be operated on the street it must have all the statutory equipment such as brakes, lights, horn and mirrors. Motorcycle class motor scooters are motor vehicles which are prohibited from sidewalks under the provisions of Connecticut State Law Title 14 Sec. 14-250a.
As of 10/2008: 2-wheeled vehicles are referred to as a motor-driven cycle (seat height 26" or less; 5 brake horsepower or less). All others are referred to as motorcycles.
Is a scooter driver's license required?
Yes, any 2-wheeled vehicle with at least a "helper motor" requires a driver's license, but only those classified as motorcycles need a motorcycle endorsement in Connecticut.
Is there a limitation as to size of scooter and license?
Yes, vehicles classified as motor-driven cycles need only a driver's license, while larger vehicles (most scooters of 50cc or more) require a motorcycle endorsement + a driver's license.
If a license is required, how do you get it? Do you need to take a written test? What about a skills test?
Connecticut scooter licensing regs require you to take both a written test AND a driving skills test to qualify for a motorcycle endorsement.
Is there any requirement for a skills class?
Yes, scooter drivers under the age of 18 must complete a novice motorcycle-training course approved by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles. The Department of Transportation's (DOT ) Connecticut Rider Education Program meets these requirements, as do certain privately operated courses. For additional information concerning the Connecticut Rider Education Program, call 1-800-USA-RIDE (1-800-872-7433) or visit their Web site at www.ride4ever.org. Additional information concerning other approved courses can be obtained from the DMV Web site at www.ct.gov/dmv.
Does the scooter have to be registered?
If your scooter has at least a 50cc engine size, it must be registered and display a license plate in Connecticut. Scooters with 49cc motors are actually considered mopeds and do not need to be registered, though you still need a driver's license to operate them.
Is scooter insurance required?
Yes, motorcycle/scooter insurance is required in Connecticut.
Is there a yearly inspection regulation?
At this time, there is only a yearly emissions test required for 4-wheeled motor vehicles.
Anything else you should know?
If the speed limit on a road is greater than the maximum speed of the motor-driven cycle, you may only operate that cycle in the right hand traffic lane or on a usable shoulder on the right side of the road, except if preparing to turn left at an intersection or into or from a private road or driveway.
For more information on Connecticut scooter laws and the motor scooter license regulations, see the Connecticut Motorcycle Manual: