I didn't pay that much for my car why is the tax so high?

An excise at the rate of $25 per one thousand dollars of valuation (effective 1/1/81) is levied on each motor vehicle.
Information on the value of a motor vehicle is accessed electronically through a data bank complete with valuation
figures. Different sources provide the valuation figures depending upon whether the motor vehicle is an automobile, a
truck, a motorcycle, or a trailer. For example, automobile valuations are derived from figures published in the National
Automobile Dealers Association Official Used Car Guide (NADA), to which the Registry has electronic access. Most public
libraries have copies of NADA and other motor vehicle official guides.

Figures are the manufacturers’ list prices for vehicles in their year of manufacture.
Present market value, price paid,
or condition are not considered for excise tax purposes.
The excise tax law (M.G.L. c.60A, s.1) establishes its own
formula for valuation for state tax purposes whereby
only the manufacturer’s original list price and the age of the
motor vehicle are considered.
The formula is as follows:

In the year preceding the model year
(brand new car released before model year)
50% of the original value

In the model year
90% of the original value

In the second year
60% of the original value

In the third year
40% of the original value

In the fourth year
25% of the original value

In the fifth and succeeding years
10% of the original value


Every motor vehicle owner must pay an excise tax based on valuation of at least ten percent of the manufacturer’s list
price; thus, owners of vehicles older than five years should have a fixed excise tax bill for succeeding years of ownership.
Even though an owner may have applied for an abatement that may reduce an excise tax bill, no excise shall be less
than $5.



Excises are prorated on a monthly basis. If a motor vehicle is registered after the beginning of any calendar year, no
excise will be imposed for those months, if any, which have fully elapsed before the vehicle is registered. If a vehicle is
registered for any part of a month, however, the excise will be due for all of that month. The annual excise due on a car
registered after January 1 will be reduced, therefore, by one twelfth of the full year’s excise for every month prior to the
one in which the vehicle was registered.

If there is a error in the valuation you can contact the Board of Assessors for a reduction in valuation.;  




Canton Board of Assessors..............................781.821.5008
Hopedale Board of Assessors..............508.634.2203 ext 214
Medfield Board of Assessors.............. 508.359.8505  ext 621
Millis Board of Assessors................................. 508.376.7049
Norwood Board of Assessors........................... 781.762.1240
Raynham Board of Assessors..........................508.824.2704
Westwood Board of Assessors.........................781.326.1904


The Tax Collector can not grant an abatement. Only the Board of Assessors can.