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Three Big Changes to Massachusetts’ Rebate for Electric Cars

The wait is over! Massachusetts just announced three new changes to the state rebate program for electric cars, MOR-EV, that will make electric vehicles (EVs) more accessible to more people in Massachusetts. All three changes stem from last year’s climate law, which included several provisions to make EV access more equitable in the Commonwealth.

electric mini cooperReminder of MOR-EV Rules 

First, a quick reminder: all Massachusetts residents, businesses, and nonprofit organizations can apply for the MOR-EV rebate to bring down the up-front cost of light-duty passenger vehicles. (A subprogram, MOR-EV Truck, offers rebates for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. More on that here.) Drivers have 90 days after the purchase or lease to apply and receive $3,500 for fully battery-electric vehicles with a final sales price under $55,000. This rebate is now referred to as “MOR-EV Standard” to distinguish it from the three new program features!


Rebates for Used Electric Cars 

MOR-EV has offered rebates for new electric cars since 2014. Now, for the first time, residents of Massachusetts who purchase a used electric vehicle (EV) qualify for a rebate as well. Used vehicles must meet the same qualifications as new vehicles, but there are a couple of additional eligibility requirements for this aspect of the program, called “MOR-EV Used Vehicle.

  1. You must meet an income qualification, either by demonstrating participation in a list of existing income-qualified programs or having a modified adjusted gross income (AGI) no larger than $150,000 (if married and filing jointly), $112,500 (if head of household), or $75,000 (all other filers).
  2. The vehicle must be purchased at a licensed Massachusetts dealership (private sales are not eligible).
  3. The final purchase price of the used vehicle must be $40,000 or less (including the costs of the trim but excluding registration/documentation fees and taxes).
  4. The vehicle must not have received a MOR-EV rebate in the previous three years. (You'll have to sign an attestation form indicating this is true to the best of your knowledge.)

drive green, ev, female, home,The MOR-EV Used rebate is also $3,500. For application instructions, please see the MOR-EV website here. Please note: MOR-EV Used is currently only available as a post-purchase rebate. Starting August 31, eligible residents will be able to apply for pre-qualification and then receive a voucher to present to dealers to be able to get MOR-EV Used at the point of sale. 

Another reminder: the state rebate is in addition to the federal tax credit for used EVs, which is up to $4,000. However, the price cap for the federal tax credit is $25,000 instead of the $40,000 for MOR-EV Used.


Rebates Available at the Point-of-Sale

Historically, Massachusetts residents have had to fill out an application online after purchasing or leasing an EV and then wait for a check to arrive in the mail to receive their rebate. Now, residents can claim the rebate directly at the point of sale at certain participating dealerships. MOR-EV maintains a list of those dealerships here. We expect that list to grow over time! 

If you’d like to take advantage of the MOR-EV at the point-of-sale, simply work with one of the dealers on that list to acquire a vehicle. When it comes time to purchase, you’ll have to show the dealer a copy of your driver’s license to verify your residency in Massachusetts and sign two forms (an “Applicant Terms & Conditions” form and a “Rebate Transfer Acknowledgment Form”). They’ll take it from there!


Additional Rebate for Low-Income Drivers 

Finally, MOR-EV now also offers a higher rebate for income-qualified drivers through “MOR-EV+”. To qualify, you must participate in one of these existing income-qualified programs. MOR-EV+ adds $1,500 to your MOR-EV Standard or MOR-EV Used rebate, bringing the total up to $5,000.  

However, much like MOR-EV Used, MOR-EV+ is currently only available as a rebate after purchase. Again, starting August 31, eligible residents will be able to apply for pre-qualification to get a voucher to access MOR-EV+ at the point of sale.  

For application instructions, please see the MOR-EV website here.


Other Changes of Note 

In addition to these three big changes, there are a couple of items worth noting in the state’s announcement: 

1. MOR-EV Used and MOR-EV+ rebates are retroactive to November 10, 2022;

2. The MOR-EV website content is now translated into Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, Vietnamese, and Chinese (scroll down to the very bottom of the page and click on “Language” to translate)

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3. MOR-EV Truck now offers rebates for pick-up trucks and Class 2B vehicles in addition to classes 3 through 8.


This is a Big Deal 

Green Energy Consumers advocated for several EV-related bills in the last legislative session that ended up making it into last year’s final climate law. Since then, we’ve been keeping tabs on the executive branch, advocating for the swiftest possible implementation of these changes. As we are quoted as saying in the Commonwealth’s press release, the MOR-EV program has been one of the Commonwealth’s strongest tools to help accelerate the adoption of electric cars in Massachusetts. We are thrilled to see these three new changes that will make electric vehicles more affordable to more people. Many drivers in Massachusetts never buy new cars, can’t afford to pay $3,500 upfront only to be reimbursed later, or need a higher incentive to be able to make the switch. These changes will make it possible for more people, particularly low- and moderate-income drivers, to make the switch and benefit from electric cars’ lower fuel costs, reduced maintenance costs, and lack of air pollution.