If an excise bill is received for a vehicle which was traded and which was not owned in the calendar year stated on the bill, you should:
- Pay the bill and file an application for abatement with the Assessor's Office.
- If the license plates were transferred to the new vehicle, provide a copy of the New Registration Form and the Purchase Agreement citing the vehicle as Trade-In.
- If the license plates were returned to the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles provide a copy of the Plate Return Receipt and the Purchase Agreement citing the vehicle as Trade-In.
- Provide a copy of your completed application for abatement along with all supporting documentation to the Assessor's Office.
Contact the Assessor's office at 978-540-2410 for an application for abatement or you can fill in and print out a Motor Vehicle Abatement Application Form (PDF). Follow the directions on the form and send it to the Assessor's Office at 37 Shattuck Street Littleton, MA 01460
The Assessor's Office can then adjust the bill to reflect the ownership for only part of the year, and grant the proper abatement. The bill is prorated back to the last day of the month in which the vehicle was owned and the excise bill on the new vehicle will be prorated as of the date the new vehicle was registered. In no event shall the excise abatement be for less than $5, nor shall an abatement or refund under Section 1 of Chapter 60A reduce an excise tax to less than $5.
Note: It is important to remember that the bill for a vehicle you no longer own should not be ignored. On unpaid excise tax bills, an owner risks incurring late fees and penalties if an abatement is not granted.