Please note that an application for abatement does not stay collection of Motor Vehicle Excise Tax. In the event abatement is granted due to sale, trade, theft, loss, etc., the amount abated will be refunded to you. No abatement shall be granted for less than $5, and no amount shall be refunded below $5. The Board of Assessors has the authority to abate an excise tax bill only if an application is timely filed. To be timely filed, an application must be received on or before December 31st of the year following the year to which the excise bill relates. Once registered in the year, a bill can be abated only if the vehicle is sold, traded, junked, totaled, or otherwise disposed of and the plates are transferred to another vehicle or canceled. If the vehicle is disposed of and the plates are not transferred or canceled, no abatement can be issued: or if the plates have been canceled or transferred and the original vehicle is not disposed of, no abatement can be issued.
You may be eligible for an excise abatement in any of the situations listed below. Come into the Assessor's office to complete an abatement application and provide us with all the required documentation. All requested supporting documentation must be supplied for the bill to be abated.
Documentation needed if your vehicle was...
- Sold or Traded: Plate Return Receipt or New Registration if plate transferred and bill of sale or paperwork showing trade.
- Stolen or Total Loss: Insurance Company Settlement Letter and C-19 form (Affidavit of Lost or Stolen Plate from Registry) and New Registration if plate transferred
- Moved From Town: Proof of Residency prior to January 1rst of the year of the bill: e.g. utility bill, voter registration receipt, lease (moving to another city or town during the calendar year does not entitle you to an abatement). You must notify the Registry of Motor Vehicles within 30 days of your move.
- Moved From Massachusetts: Registration from New State and a Plate Return Receipt
- Junked Vehicle Receipt and Plate Return Receipt or New Registration if plate transferred.
- Vehicle Returned to Dealer: Letter from dealer acknowledging receipt of vehicle and Plate Return Receipt or New Registration if plate transferred
- Charitable Donation: Letter from Charity acknowledging receipt of vehicle and Plate Return Receipt or New Registration if plate transferred
- Active Duty Non-Resident Military: Legal Residence Form from paymaster's office.
View the Motor Vehicle Excise Abatement Form (PDF).
When your excise tax abatement is processed you will receive an Abatement Certificate from the Board of Assessors. If a refund is due, a check will follow from the Collector.
For questions about vehicle registration information or vehicle valuation, call the Registry of Motor Vehicles Excise Tax Correction Bureau at 617-351-9380 or visit the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles online to change your address or get general information.