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How riding an electric scooter down to the shops could cost you thousands.

  • By:Anderson Boemi

The riding of private Electric Scooters or E-Scooters on a public street is currently illegal in New South Wales.

They are legal in Victoria, the ACT, Northern Territory and Tasmania.

However, from July 2022 an electric scooter scheme is being trialled in NSW at certain locations and is expected to last for 12 months but only at 2 locations:

  • Western Sydney Parklands
  • Australian Botanic Gardens

The details of the trial are an be found at on the Transport for NSW website here.

That still means, despite a trial, private usage of an electric scooter will be banned on public roads, pathways, or any park that is open to and used by the public, or accessible by vehicles.

At the moment if you are caught riding an electric scooter outside the terms of the Trial you risk large fines and in some instances licence suspension, disqualification, or imprisonment.

These are penalties that are usually reserved for drivers of cars or motorcycles that drive on the road without registration or CTP insurance. Yes, the same fines that exist for driving an unregistered and uninsured car or motorcycle apply equally to riders of electric scooters!

The Road Transport Act 2013 regulates what a ‘road’ or ‘road related area’. A road related area includes footpaths, cycleways, shared pathways, public carparks, and even places like Centennial, Parramatta, and Fagan Park in Galston.

Electric Scooters are defined as a ‘vehicle’ and more importantly, a ‘motor vehicle’ because essentially it is vehicle that is built to be propelled by a motor that forms part of the vehicle.

You may be asking why then can I ride a bicycle with an electric motor? The reason is because it is still a bicycle with pedals and the motor exists as a way of assistance only, it is not designed as the sole means of propulsion. An electric scooter, like a motorcycle is simply a motor-vehicle on two wheels.

The penalties for using electric scooters are steep! Because they are classed as motorcycles, riders must also wear helmets, hold a valid motorcycle licence, and adhere to the Road Rules just like other road users.

An electric scooter is essentially an “unregistered registerable vehicle” but does not meet the Australian Design Standards and so cannot be registered unless it has been exempted from registration under the Road Transport Act.

That means than any person riding an electric scooter can be fined or charged with riding an unregistered and uninsured vehicle,  a vehicle where registration tax has not been paid, and unlicenced driving. You could also have that expensive electric scooter confiscated by the police and forfeited to the Crown.

Some of the fines, or in some cases charges, that may be issued by the police are outlined below.

These fines can be issued all together for the one incident, for example –

Using an unregistered, Uninsured vehicle, Tax not paid, and not wear approved helmet amounts to a total fine of $2,464!

So, the financial consequences for riding your electric scooter down to the shops for some bread and milk, in a park, or on a cycleway could turn out to be a very costly trip.

If you have been fined or charged by the police relating to riding an electric scooter or any other traffic matter please call one of our experienced solicitors at Anderson Boemi Lawyers on (02) 9653 9466 and we will be able to help you.

Electric scooter offences that may apply.

Offence Fine
Ride a privately owned e-scooter on road or related area Penalties may apply for being an unregistered, uninsured, and unlicensed motor vehicle*
Ride an e-scooter hired through a share scheme outside trial area $120
Ride on road with speed limit greater than 50km/h $120
Ride on footpath $120
Ride an e-scooter not in single file on roads $120
Ride e-scooter whilst under minimum age of 16 years $120
Exceed maximum operating speed limit of 20 km/h $120
Carry passengers $120
Riding whilst under the influence of alcohol The same penalty regime that applies to motorists applies to e-scooter riders during the trial. Find drink driving and drug driving penalties on the NSW Government website.
Riding whilst under the influence of a drug (other than alcohol) The same penalty regime that applies to motorists applies to e-scooter riders during the trial. Find drink driving and drug driving penalties on the NSW Government website.
Use mobile phone whilst riding $362
Fail to wear helmet $362
Ride at night without appropriate lights and reflector $120
Using an unregistered vehicle


Using an uninsured vehicle


Using a vehicle with tax not paid


Not wearing an approved helmet


Unlicensed Riding/Driving  (Class R) 1st Offence)

2nd Prior Offence




Drive while suspended (1st offence)


Court Attendance Notice – no on the spot fine.


Imprisonment – 6 months and/or $3300 and automatic Licence Disqualification 6 months and minimum 3 months.

Drive while disqualified (1st offence)


Court Attendance Notice – no on the spot fine.


Imprisonment – 6 months and/or $3300 and automatic further disqualification of 6 months and minimum 3 months.




The content of the Anderson Boemi Lawyers website is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this website do not constitute legal advice and should not be used as such. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular matters. If you have a particular matter you need legal advice for, or you have any questions about our disclaimer please contact our office on (02) 9653 9466.


Posted in: Driving & Traffic