Don’t Pay Too Much to Charge Your Vehicle


By Larry Ajalat

As gas prices rise and consumers want to do their part to help the environment, electric vehicles (EV) are becoming more and more common. These vehicles are powered purely by electricity, as opposed to the traditional gas-powered vehicles, and are better for the environment as they have little or no emissions.

However, the main problem with these vehicles is that their range is severely limited. The best EV can only travel 100 miles per charge, and most are in the 70-90 mile range (the exception is the Tesla, which can get 200-300 miles per charge depending on the model, though its starting price is around $70,000).

Too often, EV owners find themselves at a charging station and needing a charge, with the provider requiring the purchase of a subscription or membership in order to use the charging station. A new law, the Electric Vehicle Charging Stations Open Access Act, protects against these predatory practices. The law prohibits charging a subscription fee for using an electric vehicle charging station and prohibits requiring a person to become a member in any club, association, or organization as a condition of using the charging station. The charging station is allowed to charge fees based on the amount of electricity used, but the amount of the fees must be disclosed prior to use and the charging station must allow the purchaser to pay with a credit card or mobile technology.

For questions or comments regarding this article, or any other legal matter, contact Lawrence A. Ajalat at 818.506.1500 (voice), 818.506.1016 (fax), or email him at

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