Vehicle Abatements

To apply for an Excise Abatement, two criteria must be met:

  1. Where did the license plates go?
  2. Where did the vehicle go?

Applicants must supply proof of both criteria. If the applicant still retains the vehicle, then no abatement may be granted.

Reasons for filing for excise abatement

Please be advised that in order to file for excise tax abatements, our office needs proof of what happened to the vehicle and the Mass. Plate.

If the plate was transferred to another vehicle, we need a copy of the registration of the vehicle that the plate was transferred to, and also tell us what happened to the car.

If the plate was returned to a Mass. Registry of Motor Vehicles Office, we need a copy of the plate receipt issued by the Registry of Motor Vehicles showing the date of cancellation. Also, the vehicle MUST have been sold, or title transferred. (Chapter 60A Section 1)

If the vehicle was stolen, then we need a memo from the insurance company stating the date of the theft, date of the settlement, and that the vehicle was never recovered. Also, you need to file an “affidavit of lost or stolen plates” with the Registry of Motor Vehicles and submit a copy to our office.

If the vehicle was totaled in an accident, then we need a memo from the insurance company stating the date of the accident, and, the date of the settlement. Also, you need to file an “affidavit of lost or stolen plates” with the Registry of Motor Vehicles, and submit a copy to our office.

If the vehicle was repossessed, then we need proof of the date that the vehicle was repossessed, such as correspondence from the company who took repossession of the vehicle. Also, you need to file an “affidavit of lost or stolen plates” with the Registry of Motor Vehicles, and submit a copy to our office.

If the vehicle is registered in another City or Town in Massachusetts we need to see the Insurance Selection Coverage Sheet, in order to verify that you did not reside in New Bedford, Ma, as of January 1 of the year that you are applying for an abatement.

If the vehicle has been registered out-of-state, then we need to see a copy of the out-of-state registration showing the date and state the vehicle is registered in.

A registrant who cancels a registration during a calendar year may qualify for a partial abatement. To be eligible, however, such a registrant must also either (a) transfer title to the vehicle or (b) move out of Massachusetts and register the vehicle in some other jurisdiction. For a registrant who so qualifies, the assessors, not the Registry, must calculate the amount of the abatement for which the registrant is eligible. A registrant will never qualify for an abatement on any vehicle for any month during which the vehicle was registered for any portion of that month. The minimum motor vehicle assessment which may be made is $5.00 and there is a $5.00 minimum abatement requirement.

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