Motor Vehicles

A change in the law dealing with the taxation of motor vehicles went into effect January 1, 1993. Basically, the new statute changed the way property tax is collected on registered motor vehicles. These vehicles (cars, trucks, trailers, motorcycles, and similar property) will no longer have to be listed in January. Unregistered (untagged) motor vehicles must still be listed annually in January and will be billed with other personal property.


When you receive your vehicle registration renewal card from the Division of Motor Vehicles, please make sure your address and county are correct. If the address and county are not correct, DMV must be notified so you are taxed by the proper county and municipality.


About three months after your registration renewal, or a new registration application, you will receive a bill which is payable on the first day of the following month. For example, if you have a March renewal, you will receive a bill in June, it will be due on July 1, and it must be paid by July 31 to avoid the addition of interest. You will receive a separate tax bill on each registered vehicle you own.


If taxes are not paid on time, the county tax collector will issue a block on the registration. If a vehicle receives a block, the registration cannot be renewed again until the taxes plus interest have been paid. Registration can only be renewed on a blocked vehicle after a paid tax receipt has been presented to DMV.

Chapter 7  Property Tax Law


The property tax system requires counties to assess the values of motor vehicles registered with DMV and to prepare tax bills. Three months after the motor vehicle’s registration renewal date, the vehicle owner will receive a tax bill which is payable on the first day of the following month.


The property tax law calls for counties to charge interest for overdue accounts. Recent legislation now allows counties to block the license plate (registration) renewal for any vehicle for which the owner owes an overdue property tax.


A county tax collector can place a “block” on the registration of any vehicle for which property tax payment is at least four months overdue, when the overdue tax exceeds $5.00. If a county places a “block” on the vehicle registration, the DMV is unable to renew the license plate for that vehicle until the owner presents the DMV with a standardized paid tax receipt.


The DMV is not involved in establishing the value of a vehicle for property tax purposes. It furnishes a record of the make and model of the registered vehicle, and the local county assessment office determines the tax accordingly.


The new law covers all motor vehicles except:


vehicles exempt from registration by North Carolina law;

manufactured homes;

mobile classrooms and offices;

semi-trailers registered on a multi-year basis;

motor vehicles owned or leased by public service companies; and

vehicles in confidential status.


North Carolina residents who have not registered their vehicles or who have not renewed their vehicle registrations are required to list their vehicles with their county of residence by January 31 of each year.


Change of name or address


If you change your name or address, you must notify the DMV within 60 days by writing to:


NC Division of Motor Vehicles
Vehicle Registration Section
1100 New Bern Avenue
Raleigh, N.C. 27697-0001


Change of name/address forms are available at any local DMV office.


On-Line Payment

Tax Rates

Tax Collections

Tax Listing

Electronic Tax Forms

On-Line Maps

Contact Us


Payment Options