Motor Vehicle Excise Tax Bills

By Massachusetts law, every vehicle in the state is subject to an annual excise tax.   While individual communities bill and collect these excise taxes, it is the Registry of Motor Vehicles which is responsible for determining by which community the vehicle owner will be billed.  The billing community is determined by the “Place of Garaging” that the owner has listed on the automobile insurance form.

The statutory excise rate is $25 per thousand dollars of value.  The value of a vehicle for the purpose of the excise is the applicable percentage for that year of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price for that vehicle.  The applicable percentages are set out in state law as follows:

  • In the year preceding the year of manufacture - 50%
  • In the year of manufacture - 90%
  • In the second year - 60%
  • In the third year - 40%
  • In the fourth year -  25%
  • In the fifth and succeeding years -  10%

Original Bill - Excise bills are due and payable within thirty days of issue. 
*Payments made by mail that are received after the due date bearing earlier postmarks do not qualify as being timely
Demand bills will be sent on all excise bills not paid within the thirty day period.  The Demand bill will add a flat $15.00 charge to each bill, plus interest at the rate of 12% per annum from the due date to the date of payment.

If the Motor Vehicle Excise bill is not paid within 14 days of the issuance of the Demand bill, this office sends the unpaid bill to the Town’s Deputy Collector for further action.  The Deputy Collector for the Town of Leicester is Kelley & Ryan Associates, which is located in Milford.

Notice of Warrant - The Deputy Collector will first mail a Notice of Warrant to the delinquent taxpayer.  This notice will add an additional $22.00 to each bill, and the interest continues to accrue at 12% per annum.

Service of Warrant - If not paid within 30 days of the Notice of Warrant, the Deputy Collector will then issue a Service of Warrant, adding yet another $17.00 charge to the bill.  Services of Warrant are hand delivered to the last known address of the vehicle owners.  Again, interest continues to accrue at 12% per annum.

Non-Renewal Marks – If the excise continues unpaid after Service of Warrant, the owner and his vehicle will be “marked” at the Registry of Motor Vehicles for non-renewal of both car registration and driving license.  At this point, the Registry adds an additional $20.00 to each marked bill which the Town is obliged to collect.  Individuals whose bills are marked may not renew their license or register any car until the delinquent bill has been paid.

Incorrect Excise Bills - When a taxpayers receives an excise bill that he believes to be incorrect, he must contact the Assessors’ Office for information on whether the bill may be eligible for abatement.  If the Assessors determine that the bill can be abated in full, any interest and charges that may have accrued to the bill will also be abated.  If, however, there is only a partial abatement, the balance of the excise must be paid along with all accrued interest and charges.

Partial Payments – Partial payments of motor vehicle excise bills may not be accepted.  Since the law states that interest and charges, as they accrue, become a part of the bill, payment of delinquent bills may be accepted only if all fees and charges are included in the payment.

On-Line Payments – Motor Vehicle Excise Bills may be paid on-line through the Town of Leicester web site until the end of the demand due period.  After the excise bills have gone on warrant, they may be paid on-line through the web site of the Town’s Deputy Collector’s Office, which is Kelley & Ryan.  For more information on making on-line payments, please see the “Pay Bills On-Line” section on the Collector’s home page.