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Electric Bikes State Laws

E-bikes have rapidly been growing in popularity over the past few years. And the trend isn’t showing any signs of stopping. 

Most people’s daily commutes are relatively short, and using cars not only damages the environment - it also drives commuting costs way up. It’s no surprise, then, that the e-bike market grew over 23% during 2020 - and is expected to hit USD 52.36 billion by 2028.

Federal institutions throughout the USA have taken notice of this. Hence, most states have been implementing detailed laws on electric bikes, while some are still adapting to the trend.

So if you’re a new rider - or even an experienced one - but want to brush up on your state’s laws, you’re in the right place. Our introduction to e-bike laws will cover relevant topics for every state and answer common questions.


Introduction To E-Bike Laws In The USA

Right now, only 44 states and the District of Columbia (D.C.) have clear definitions for e-bikes. Twenty-six of them use the popular three-tiered classification system. At the same time, 18 have developed definitions that are either similar to the three-tiered system or unique to the state in question.

States that have opted for the three-tiered system usually don’t require registration for e-bikes. That helps federal institutions differentiate e-bikes from other motorized vehicles (e.g., scooters and mopeds), which do have to be registered.

Meanwhile, Alaska, North Dakota, Massachusetts, and a few other states require a license due to different reasons. Some even require license and registration despite e-bikes being separate from other motorized vehicles.

It can be somewhat challenging to stay up to date and keep track of all this information, so we’ve covered this extensive topic for each state individually.

Depending on where you live - and where you plan to ride your e-bike - you could be legally obligated to wear a helmet, follow certain speed limits, or register your e-bike.

We’ll be going over how electric bikes are classified in each state - and answer some common questions:

Do you need a license or insurance for your bike, where on the road you should ride, what modifications you’re allowed to make on your electric bike - and much more. Like the state laws themselves, all the information provided here serves to protect both you and the people around you.

For further information, head on to our state-specific e-bike law guides below!

State by State Electric Bike Laws and Regulations