If you have just bought a go-kart or are planning to buy one you must be asking yourself if go-karts have titles and if you need to register it. You’re not the only one who is wondering that. It’s actually a fairly common question and the answer to that may sometimes not be so direct.
So, do go-karts have titles? Well the short answer to this question is the following. Generally speaking, go-karts do not have titles because they are not treated as road legal vehicles in most states. This is because go-karts are generally classified as low-speed vehicles (LSV). Therefore, they do not require any official registration, as they are not allowed on public roadways.
An exception can be made with off-road go karts, as they may be registered for road use in certain states. It’s important to know that laws are different in each state in America and in other countries. For more information, always check the exact details with your state’s DMV, if you are unsure. The following paragraphs will help you to understand more on go-karts and titles.
What Is a Go-Kart Title?
A title is a legal certificate that is issued to a person or a business, which deems them the legal operator and owner of a vehicle. In this case, the vehicle in question would be a go-kart. Each state in the US has its own title requirements, process and vehicle definition.
Generally speaking, go-karts are not classified as a road legal vehicles, but as low-speed vehicles (LSV) that are only legal to operate on unpaved roads or on private property, such as a go-kart racing track or at home.
Therefore, if you own a racing go-kart and plan to race on private property or at a go-kart race track, you should not have to register it and therefore do not require a title. However, there can be an exception in some scenarios that is explained below.
Can You Register a Go-Kart?
Yes, you can. Here is why and what type of go-kart is usually registered. Off-road go-karts or dune buggies are mostly raced off-road and as long as they are driven on private property or unpaved roads, they don’t need to be registered. Again, it’s best to check this with your local go-kart laws, as the legal requirements are different state-by-state.
However, in some states off-road go-karts can be registered as road legal vehicles, which would allow you to ride them on public roads. This is possible as most off-road go-karts are equipped with the required features such as lights, turn signals, seat belts, mirrors, etc. This means that when you intend to use an off-road go-kart on paved roads, you require a title, which is registered through the DMV.
If you plan to register your go-kart for road use, check out the guide on how to make your go-kart street legal.
What does a Go-Kart Title Look like?
A title for a go-kart will show important information about the vehicle and its owner. The information would look as follows:
- Vehicle identification number (VIN), make, and year of manufacture
- License plate number
- Technical specification of the kart
- Name and address of person or entity or purchaser
- If applicable: name or entity of lienholder
How to Register a Go-Kart
You can simply register a go-kart at any local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) location in your state. To register your go-kart at the DMV, you should ensure that your kart matches all legal requirements and that you bring all required legal documentation, in order for it to get approved. If you are unsure of that is required, check with your local DMV. Generally, the requirement checklist should look like this:
- Title of the go-kart
- Bill of Sale (indicating sell price and VIN)
- Valid driver’s license
- Proof of registered vehicle insurance