Florida Motorcycle Laws

Florida is a great place for motorcyclists. With great ocean views and even better hidden gems to explore, there is no shortage of intriguing sights and fantastic riding weather. Riders converge on the Sunshine State for major events, like Biketoberfest and Daytona Bike Week and thousands of Florida locals rely on their motorcycles for daily commutes. Knowing Florida’s motorcycle laws is essential to ensure compliance – and safety.

Select a category:

Mandatory Gear for Motorcycle Riders

  • Does Florida have a helmet law? Yes and no.. A rider may choose not to wear a helmet when operating a motorcycle only if the rider is over the age of 21 and covered by an insurance policy providing at least $10,000 in medical benefits for injuries incurred as a result of a crash while operating or riding upon a motorcycle. All riders, under the age of 21, must wear a helmet at all times when operating or riding on a motorcycle. 316.211(3b): Notwithstanding subsection (1), a person over 21 years of age may operate or ride upon a motorcycle without wearing protective headgear securely fastened upon his or her head if such person is covered by an insurance policy providing for at least $10,000 in medical benefits for injuries incurred as a result of a crash while operating or riding on a motorcycle. Learn More
  • Can I wear a headset while riding? No, you can not wear a headset not attached to your helmet 316.304(1): No person shall operate a vehicle while wearing a headset, headphone, or other listening device, other than a hearing aid or instrument for the improvement of defective human hearing. Learn More
  • Is eye protection requires? Yes, eye protection is always required when riding 316.211(2): A person may not operate a motorcycle unless the person is wearing an eye-protective device over his or her eyes of a type approved by the department. Learn More

Required Equipment for Motorcycles

  • Are brakes require on both the front and back wheels? Yes, brakes are required on all wheels 316.261(3): Every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, and pole trailer, and any combination of such vehicles, operating upon a highway within this state shall be equipped with brakes in compliance with the requirements of this chapter. Learn More
  • Can I have a loud exhaust system on my motorcycle? No, exhaust systems can not be modified to be louder than originally equipped 316.293(5)(b): No person shall operate a motor vehicle upon the highways of the state with an exhaust system or noise-abatement device so modified. Learn More

    Furthermore, exhaust system must prevent excessive fumes or smoke 316.272(2): The engine and power mechanism of every motor vehicle shall be so equipped and adjusted as to prevent the escape of excessive fumes or smoke. Learn More
  • What are the handlebar restrictions? In Florida, the handlebar’s height cannot be higher than operator’s shoulders 316.2095(2): No person shall operate any motorcycle with handlebars or with handgrips that are higher than the top of the shoulders of the person operating the motorcycle while properly seated upon the motorcycle. Learn More
  • Do I need a horn? Yes, a horn required 316.271(1): Every motor vehicle when operated upon a highway shall be equipped with a horn in good working order and capable of emitting sound audible under normal conditions from a distance of not less than 200 feet. Learn More
  • Are mirrors mandatory? Yes, mirrors are required 316.294: Every vehicle, operated singly or when towing any other vehicle, shall be equipped with a mirror so located as to reflect to the driver a view of the highway for a distance of at least 200 feet to the rear of the motor vehicle. A violation of this section is a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a nonmoving violation as provided in chapter 318. Learn More
  • Does Florida Require Motorcycle Headlights? Yes, a headlight is required 316.400(1): Every motorcycle and every motor-driven cycle shall be equipped with at least one and not more than two headlamps which shall comply with the requirements and limitations of this chapter. Learn More
  • When do I need to use my headlight? Your headlight must be on at all times 316.405(1): Any person who operates a motorcycle or motor-driven cycle on the public streets or highways shall, while so engaged, have the headlight or headlights of such motorcycle or motor-driven cycle turned on. Learn More
  • Rear red reflector required 316.415: Every motorcycle and motor-driven cycle shall carry on the rear, either as part of the taillamp or separately, at least one red reflector. A violation of this section is a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a nonmoving violation as provided in chapter 318. Learn More
  • A stop lamp is required 316.420: Every motorcycle and motor-driven cycle shall be equipped with at least one stop lamp meeting the requirements of s. 316.234(1). A violation of this section is a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a nonmoving violation as provided in chapter 318. Learn More
  • Turn signals are required 316.222(2): Every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, and pole trailer shall be equipped with electric turn signal lamps meeting the requirements of s. 316.234(2). Learn More

    Turn signals colors and mounting position 316.234(2): Any vehicle may be equipped and, when required under s. 316.222(2), shall be equipped with electric turn signals which shall indicate an intention to turn by flashing lights showing to the front and rear of a vehicle or on a combination of vehicles on the side of the vehicle or combination toward which the turn is to be made. Learn More
  • Tail light required 316.410(1): Every motorcycle and motor-driven cycle shall have at least one taillamp which shall be located at a height of not more than 72 nor less than 20 inches. Learn More

Riding Laws in Florida

  • Is Lane Splitting Legal in Florida? No, passing in the same lane is not legal 316.209(2): The operator of a motorcycle shall not overtake and pass in the same lane occupied by the vehicle being overtaken. Learn More
  • Riding between lanes 316.209(3): No person shall operate a motorcycle between lanes of traffic or between adjacent lines or rows of vehicles. Learn More
  • Can I run a red light if it does not detect my motorcycle? No, Florida does not permit the running of red lights 316.1235: Vehicle approaching intersection in which traffic lights are inoperative. The driver of a vehicle approaching an intersection in which the traffic lights are inoperative shall stop in the manner indicated in s. 316.123(2) for approaching a stop intersection. Learn More
  • Riding more than two abreast 316.209(4): Motorcycles shall not be operated more than two abreast in a single lane. Learn More
  • Drag racing, speed competition on roadway or parking lot 316.191(2)(a): A person may not: (a) Drive any motor vehicle, including any motorcycle, in any race, speed competition or contest, drag race or acceleration contest, test of physical endurance, or exhibition of speed or acceleration or for the purpose of making a speed record on any highway, roadway, or parking lot; Learn More
  • Stunting: both wheels on the ground; facing forward properly seated etc. 316.2085(2): A person shall ride upon a motorcycle or moped only while sitting astride the seat, with both wheels on the ground at all times, facing forward, and with one leg on each side of the motorcycle or moped. However, it is not a violation of this subsection if the wheels of a motorcycle or moped lose contact with the ground briefly due to the condition of the road surface or other circumstances beyond the control of the operator. Learn More
  • Passing off pavement or main portion of roadway 316.084(2): The driver of a vehicle may overtake and pass another vehicle on the right only under conditions permitting such movement in safety. In no event shall such movement be made by driving off the pavement or main-traveled portion of the roadway. Learn More
  • Carrying item(s) that prevent both hands on handlebars 316.2085(4): No person shall operate a motorcycle or moped while carrying any package, bundle, or other article which prevents the person from keeping both hands on the handlebars. Learn More

Passenger Laws in Florida

  • Is a seat for operator and passenger required? Yes, there has to be a seat for the passenger or the seat must be meant for two 316.2085(1): A person operating a motorcycle or moped shall ride only upon the permanent and regular seat attached thereto, and such operator shall not carry any other person, nor shall any other person ride on a motorcycle or moped, unless such motorcycle or moped is designed to carry more than one person, in which event a passenger may ride upon the permanent and regular seat if designed for two persons or upon another seat firmly attached to the motorcycle or moped at the rear or side of the operator. Learn More
  • Does the passenger need footrests? Yes, footrests for the passenger are required 316.2095(1): Any motorcycle carrying a passenger, other than in a sidecar or enclosed cab, shall be equipped with footrests for such passenger. Learn More

Motorcycle Endorsement

  • Are you required to have a motorcycle endorsement to ride in Florida? Yes, motorcycle endorsements are required 322.03(4): A person may not operate a motorcycle unless he or she holds a driver license that authorizes such operation, subject to the appropriate restrictions and endorsements. A person may operate an autocycle, as defined in s. 316.003, without a motorcycle endorsement. Learn More
  • Three wheeled motorcycle only restriction on DL 322.16(1)(a): The department, upon issuing a driver license, may, whenever good cause appears, impose restrictions suitable to the licensee’s driving ability with respect to the type of special mechanical control devices required on a motor vehicle that the licensee may operate, including, but not limited to, restricting the licensee to operating only vehicles equipped with air brakes, or imposing upon the licensee such other restrictions as the department determines are appropriate to assure the safe operation of a motor vehicle by the licensee. Learn More

Required Tags

  • Tag required on exterior rear 316.605(1): Every vehicle, at all times while driven, stopped, or parked upon any highways, roads, or streets of this state, shall be licensed in the name of the owner thereof in accordance with the laws of this state. Learn More
  • Tag must be permanently attached not capable of being flipped 316.2085(3): The license tag of a motorcycle or moped must be permanently affixed to the vehicle and remain clearly visible from the rear at all times. Any deliberate act to conceal or obscure the legibility of the license tag of a motorcycle is prohibited. The license tag of a motorcycle or moped may be affixed horizontally to the ground so that the numbers and letters read from left to right. Learn More
  • Tag light required-white 316.410(2): Either a taillamp or a separate lamp shall be so constructed and placed as to illuminate with a white light the rear registration plate and render it clearly legible from a distance of 50 feet to the rear. Any taillamp or taillamps, together with any separate lamp or lamps for illuminating the rear registration plate, shall be so wired as to be lighted whenever the headlamps or auxiliary driving lamps are lighted. Learn More