Discrimination by Higher Fees for Low Income Earners - Australian Constitution Issue?

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30 November 2014
I believe that low income workers are being subjected to discrimination and possibly even being punished because in South Australia, and perhaps other states/territories, it costs more, over the course of a year, to register my car for a four 3-month periods than it does for a full-year period.

I wish I could pay my car registration for an entire month, but I am unable to find work other than 2 days per week and I receive about $800 per month. Therefore, I can only afford to pay the 3-month period rate, which is $216. For the entire year that would be $864. However, if I were able to pay the yearly rate I would only pay $812.

I believe this difference in rates is punitive and discriminatory against low income earners who would be the people paying at this higher rate. Is there anything that can be done about this? Thanks for your help in advance.

Sarah J

Well-Known Member
16 July 2014
Melbourne, Victoria
This is a very common type of pricing incentive to encourage people to commit for a longer term. It is not discriminatory or punitive. Essentially, it is giving a customer a concession if they commit to a full year rather than have the freedom to stop paying after 3 months. As a customer, you are "selling" your freedom to cancel or change the contract in exchange for the lower price.

Also, the pricing may take into account administration costs. Paying registration once for a full year means only need for one administrative round of processing and filing etc. Paying registration four times a year means four times the amount of administrative duties, which is also factored into the price.

Unfortunately, the world is not always fair to everyone.
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Tim W

LawConnect (LawTap) Verified
28 April 2014
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