Is it illegal to unplug someone’s electric car?

I was recently using an electric car charging station. I stepped away to take a phone call and when I came back I noticed that someone else had unplugged my charger to charge their own car. Is it illegal to unplug someone else’s electric car?

Allison Stone · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
In areas where electric cars are popular, sometimes there is a higher demand for
charging stations
than there are chargers available. Even if this is the case, you should never unplug someone else’s car without their explicit consent.
While it is not illegal, it is considered impolite and against EV charging etiquette. A few things you can do to avoid any mishaps at the charging station include:
  • Know when you need to charge, and charge wisely. If a charging station is busy and you have enough power to make it home or to a nearby station, don’t bother with putting yourself in a situation where your car could potentially get unplugged by someone in a rush.
  • Don’t park at a charging station any longer than you need to. If you know your car will take four hours to charge to your desired level, be punctual and return as soon as that four hours is up.
  • Leaving a note. If your car is charging at a Level 2 charger and may need several hours to do so, you might take that time to step away from your car. If you’re comfortable with someone else unplugging your car once it hits a certain percentage, a friendly note can let others at the charging station use their best judgment.
As electric cars become more mainstream, charging stations will naturally get faster and more plentiful, hopefully mitigating situations like someone else unplugging your car. In the meantime, you can start saving money on your car insurance plan with
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