Registered Motor Vehicle FAQ
What is a licensed motor vehicle?
A licensed motor vehicle is any motor vehicle that maintains an active North Carolina tag and registration. The term “motor vehicle” includes automobiles, trucks, buses, campers, RV’s, trailers, and motorcycles.
How is the value of a vehicle determined?
An assessor must appraise a motor vehicle at its true value in money. The sales price of a vehicle purchased from a dealer, including all accessories attached to the vehicle, is considered the true value of the vehicle, and the assessor must appraise the vehicle at this value.
The Property Tax Division of the NC Department of Revenue annually adopts a schedule of values to be used when vehicles are not purchased from a dealer and for registration renewals. This ensures equitable statewide valuations. The system allows for adjustments for high mileage and below average condition.
May I appeal the value?
The owner of a vehicle may appeal the appraised value of the vehicle by filing a request for appeal (Gaston County Motor Vehicle Appeal Form) with the Tax Office within 30 days of the date the taxes are due. An owner who appeals the appraised value must pay the tax on the vehicle when due, subject to a full or partial refund if the appeal is decided in the owner’s favor.
Who pays the taxes on a leased vehicle?
The person or company leasing the vehicle will be mailed the combined tag and tax notice and will be responsible for paying the taxes.
Is interest charged on late payments?
Yes. NC law requires that interest be charged on late vehicle property tax payments and registration renewal fees.
Will I receive a tax refund or owe additional tax if I transfer my license plate to another vehicle during the year?
No. If you have paid your vehicle property tax for the year and then transfer the license plate to anther vehicle, you will not be eligible for a refund of any taxes paid. The registered motor vehicle to which the plate is transferred will not be taxed until the current registration is renewed.
When can I apply for a refund of vehicle property taxes paid?
An owner can apply for a refund of taxes paid when a vehicle is sold or registered out of state and the license plate is turned in to a NC license plate agency, the owner must present the following to the county tax office:
1.) Proof of plate surrender to NC DMV (DMV Form FS20).
2.) Copy of the Bill of Sale or the new state’s registration.
My Tax & Tag Combined notice shows taxes for a city or fire district that I do not live in. What do I do to get this corrected?
Please contact the Tax Office at (704) 866-3199.
My Tax & Tag combined notice shows taxes for a county I do not live in?
You must have this corrected at a NC License Plate Agency.
I received a Tax & Tag combined notice on a vehicle that I've already sold. What do I do?
If you no longer own the car and have turned in the license plate, you may ignore the invitation to renew and tax bill. If you have transferred the plate to another vehicle, DMV can create you a bill for the new vehicle.
How can I get a record of the taxes I paid on a registered vehicle?
The tax amount you paid is now listed on the registration form you received for your vehicle. If you are unable to locate the registration, go to https://edmv.ncdot.gov/mydmv/mydmvaccount/login.
What is a GAP Property Tax Notice and how are taxes calculated?
A Gap Property Tax Notice is a tax bill that covers the months between the expiration of a vehicle’s registration and the renewal of that registration or the issuance of a new registration. Taxes are based on a 12-month year, therefore the taxes due are adjusted proportionately downward if the number of Gap Months Billed is less than 12 months and upward if the number of Gap Months Billed is more than 12 months.