Motor Vehicle Excise


  • Bills are mailed annually typically at the beginning of February per RMV records as of January 1st and due 30 days later.
  • Cars purchased throughout the year are billed periodically as the RMV sends information to the Town. If you purchased a new car and haven't received a bill within 1 month, please contact the Tax Collector's office.

Motor Vehicle Valuation

The vehicle valuation is set by the table below based on the year you bought the car and the manufacturer's original list price

Year you bought the Car


% of Manufacturer's list price

  • Year before year of manufacture 50%
  • Year of manufacture 90%
  • Second year 60%
  • Third year 40%
  • Fourth year 25%
  • Fifth year and onwards 10%

Late Payments

Interest will be charged at 12% per annum on any payment not received by the Collector's Office by the due date - postmarks are not accepted. If not paid, a demand for payment will be issued and a fee of $30 (Massachusetts General Laws chapter 60:15) will be added. If payment is still not received, a warrant fee of $10 will be added and the account will be forwarded to the Deputy Collector, John Brady's Office. The Deputy Collector will issue a first notice for an additional fee of $12 and a second notice for an additional fee of $17 (Massachusetts General Laws chapter 60:15). Continued failure to pay will result in your license and registration being flagged for non-renewal at the Registry of Motor Vehicles.

Selling/Disposing of Vehicle

If you sell, trade-in, or otherwise dispose of a vehicle throughout the year, you will still be responsible for the pro-rated amount of the tax for the part of the calendar year that you owned the car. It is best to pay the excise tax in full and then apply for an abatement through the Assessing Department Motor Vehicle Excise Abatement Application (PDF). The application provides instructions and the necessary paperwork that will need to be submitted with the application. When the abatement has been processed the Tax Collector's office will issue a refund. This strategy avoids interest and late demand and other fees.

Change of Address

If you have moved out of Cohasset and have received a motor vehicle excise tax bill from us that is because as of January 1st the car was principally garaged in Cohasset according to RMV records. You have two choices: (1) Pay the excise tax to Cohasset or (2) Request an abatement from Cohasset. Cohasset will send the excise information to your new town and they will issue a new bill to you. You then will pay the excise tax to your new town. You are required to change your address at thr RMV. The following year the RMV will issue excise information about your vehicle to the appropriate town based on their records.

Massachusetts Guidance on Motor Vehicle Excise Tax

Mass.Gov Motor Vehicle Information