Charleston Golf Cart Laws & SC DMV Regulations

What Does My Golf Cart Need To Be Street Legal?

Golf carts or LSVs (low speed vehicles) driven on public roads in South Carolina need to have a VIN (vehicle identification number), headlamps (headlights), turn signals, taillights, stop lights (brake lights), reflex reflectors, exterior mirrors (side mirrors, not just a top mounted rear view mirror), parking brakes, D.O.T. (Department of Transportation) approved windshield made from safety glass, and seat belts for every seat to be considered street legal. Neither golf carts nor LSVs are allowed to operate on a road with a speed limit of more than 35 miles per hour, but they are allowed to cross a highway or street with a  speed limit of 35+ MPH.

DMV Drivers License Information

LSVs or golf carts also must be operated by a licensed driver that is over the age of sixteen, and the same laws for a car apply to golf carts regarding underage drivers and their guardians. No alcoholic beverages can be consumed while operating the vehicle, and the LSV/golf cart has to be registered and insured with property damage and personal injury insurance policy.

To Be Legal Your Cart Needs:

  • VIN (Vehicle Identification Number)

  • Headlight, Taillights, Brake Lights & Turn Signals

  • Department of Transportation Approved Safety Glass Windshield

  • Premaritally Mounted Reflex Reflectors

  • Side View and Rear View Mirrors

  • Seat Belts For Every Occupied Seat

  • Parking Break

Do I Need to Register My Golf Cart in South Carolina?

If it is only for use on your private property, then no. However, if you want to drive on a public road in your neighborhood or around town, you will need a permit from the South Carolina DMV. The permit costs $5, but you’ll have to show proof ownership (bill of sale or title information) and proof that you have a liability insurance policy. This permit needs to be renewed every 5 years or if you change your address.

More info here:

Purchasing a Golf Cart Permit

If you have a valid driver’s license, you may drive the golf cart during the day within four miles of your home or business and on secondary highways.

To receive a golf cart permit, do all of the following:

South Carolina Golf Cart Registration

The Permit Registration must be carried when the golf cart is operated. The driver’s license must be in the operator’s possession.  May be driven on a secondary highway or street for which the posted speed limit is thirty-five miles an hour or less, within 4 miles of residential or additional address noted above.

Click Here To Visit The South Carolina DMV's Website

We have provide the general information you need, but for more specific details please visit the the SCDMV website and search for more information.