Local Auto Excise tax question


L

Lhiannee

I was hoping for some advice on a notice I received today.
For the first half of the year, I was living in a town with
a local government motor vehicle excise. However, I left
the state permanently a few months ago. My ex-landlord has
forwarded me a letter he received for me from the state
deputy collector of taxes. The letter contains an auto tax
excise for 2004 of $24 plus interest, a fee for a 'demand',
a warrant fee, a warrant notice fee and another fee. The
total is now $70.

I am no longer living in the state and was not receiving
mail at my old address and I did not receive any previous
notices. I sold my car when I left and the new owner lives
in a different town, presumably paying their local excise
tax.

I called the assessment board and the tax collector. The
assessment board says its out of their control because it is
in the hands of the tax collector. The tax collector says
that I may be able to apply to the assessment board for an
abatement of the original $24 but that I still have to pay
the extra fees (now $46).

While money is tight right now, I'm more upset by the
principle of this. I left the state. The local government
should know from the dept of motor vehicles that my car was
no longer registered to that town and should not have sent
the notice to an address where I was no longer living, let
alone given it to a tax collector.

I don't intend to ever move back to that state. Is there
anything I can do except pay the $70?

Thanks,
Lhiannee
 
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H

Helen P. OPlanick EA

I was hoping for some advice on a notice I received today.
Remainder snipped.

This is a local issue and none of us know where it was you
lived. Therefore, unless one of us sees ourselves in your
old area, all we are going to do is tell you what you
already know, see the tax collector and fight it out.

Helen, EA in PA
50 miles, 3 days, 1 cause - Multiple Sclerosis Challenge Walk for the Cure
October 1 to October 3, 2004
Donate on-line at www.msandyou.org
 
A

Arthur L. Rubin

Lhiannee said:
I was hoping for some advice on a notice I received today.
For the first half of the year, I was living in a town with
a local government motor vehicle excise. However, I left
the state permanently a few months ago. My ex-landlord has
forwarded me a letter he received for me from the state
deputy collector of taxes. The letter contains an auto tax
excise for 2004 of $24 plus interest, a fee for a 'demand',
a warrant fee, a warrant notice fee and another fee. The
total is now $70.
This may be more a legal question than a tax question, but
most property taxes (which this seems to be) can only be
collected against the property itself. In other words, to
the extent the excise is valid, it could only be collected
against the vehicle.

California, and Arizona don't have local vehicle taxes (or,
if they do, they're collected on the annual registration to
the state), so I don't know the details. Perhaps if you
specify the state and locality in question someone familiar
with that state will give more details.

The question of whether you properly notified the state DMV
of the sale comes to mind. Even if the buyer did notify
DMV, the bill to you could be proper if YOU didn't. (It
doesn't necessary mean that you have to PAY the bill, just
that it might not be an abuse of the locality's discretion.)
 
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C

Charles Markham, EA

Go ahead and file for the abatement with the Assessors.
Disregard the advice from the Treasurer/Collector's office
that the penalties remain when the underlying tax is abated.

I don't know where you are talking about, but my quarter is
that once the underlying tax is abated, either the penalties go
away or the collector's office loses interest in the case.

Idiot collectors...don't get me started.

Charles Markham, Member
Board of Tax Assessors
Norwell, MA
 

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