Electrified Vehicles Face a Crucial Court Battle Over Road Taxes

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The High Court of Australia is set to hear an appeal that could affect citizens’ right to own electric cars. The appeal will decide whether states can tax citizens for the type of cars they drive and how far they drive them.

The High Court stoush this week in Canberra is expected to be a heated battle between state governments and two passionate electric car drivers.

If the states, led by Victoria, win the battle in the High Court on Tuesday, drivers of electric and hybrid cars can expect to pay various charges for their vehicles in the future. If Kath Davies and Chris Vanderstock win this case against the states, the federal government will decide the road funding regulation for the drivers of next-generation vehicles.

The battle between state governments and electric car drivers began in 2001 when Victoria introduced a tax on electric cars, hydrogen cars, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.

Ms Davies said, “The electric vehicle tax in Victoria, in my opinion, is a discriminatory tax against electric vehicle drivers, and it’s putting the brakes on EV adoption. It’s making it more difficult for people to go to EVs.”

Over 700 people have supported Chris Vanderstock and Kath Davies’ case against the states in Australia’s High Court this week. A Chuffed.org campaign has raised over $51,000 to fund the legal battle, demonstrating the strength of public opposition to Victoria’s road tax on electric and hybrid cars.

The High Court is set for the case hearing this week, from Tuesday to Thursday. The hearing before Australia’s highest court will aim to resolve this dispute between personal choice and government taxation powers by setting out definitive rules governing how taxes should be applied concerning what type of cars people drive and how far they drive them.

The outcome of this case could determine whether citizens can afford new technology without additional costs and how much states can influence people’s decisions when buying cars in the future.

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