A new law out of North Carolina’s Senate would apparently make it illegal for Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) to send emails to its customers. The law, which is an attempt to outlaw unfair competition, was passed by the state Senate and must be sent to the state House of Representatives today if it is to be passed. The full text of the law can be found at this link.
The offending passage of the law states that “using a computer or other communications facilities, hardware, or equipment” to sell or lease a car to anyone in North Carolina is illegal. The law would, using a broad interpretation, appear to outlaw the sale or lease of any car in any way other than person to person.
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The use of “communications facilities, hardware, or equipment” seems to suggest that a telephone, or possibly the mail, might be an illegal way to sell a car.
A Christian Science Monitor reporter, who contacted Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) about the new law, quoted company representative Shanna Hendriks in saying, “That is not an unreasonable interpretation of the law,” and, “Any communications device–including a telephone–could be captured as conducting sales activity, and [its use] prohibited except by franchise dealers.”
North Carolina may be stepping on a lot of toes with the new law, and if the State House passes it, there may be repercussions. The law is apparently directed at Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) directly, stemming from an attempt by the North Carolina Automobiles Association to stop what it sees as unfair competition from the electric vehicle manufacturer.
According to the Christian Science Monitor, there are 49 Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) cars in the state, and the company operates a service center in Raleigh. In order for the bill to become law, it will have to be passed by the House of Representatives and signed into law by the State’s governor.
On today’s market, shares in Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) trended down a fraction after strong gains in trading on Thursday. The company’s stock stands at $91.45 on today’s market, up an incredible 101 percent in trading in the last month and 169 percent since the start of 2013. Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) investors are unlikely to be fazed by some bill out of North Carolina, but a general resistance to the firm’s proposed selling practices may make things difficult for the firm.