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Personal Property FAQ

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<p>Frequently asked questions about personal property tax.</p>

FAQ overview

What are Personal Property Taxes?

Personal Property Taxes are those taxes which are assessed on cars, trucks, motorcycles, trailers, buses, mobile homes, motor homes, boats, boat motors and aircraft. Taxes are assessed by the Office of the Commissioner of the Revenue.

How do I know if I should be paying Personal Property Taxes?

Vehicles registered in Newport News are taxable. Vehicles not registered with the Commonwealth of Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles or Newport News are subject to tax if the vehicle is garaged, stored or parked in Newport News for more than thirty (30) days, with the exception of those exempted by law. An example of an exemption would be active duty Military Non-Resident (legal home of record other than Virginia).

How is my vehicle assessed?

Vehicle personal property tax is assessed by the Commissioner of the Revenue. Assessments are based on the average loan value listed in the N.A.D.A. (National Automobile Dealers Association Official Used Car Guide). The minimal assessment is $200.00.

What is the Personal Property Tax rate?

The Personal Property Tax rate is set each year by City Council. The current tax rates are as follows:

Type of Personal Property Rate per $100
Tangible Personal Property (cars and trucks) $4.50
Boats (under 5 tons), Motors, RV's and Campers $1.00
Mobile Homes $1.22
Machinery and Tools $3.50
Handicap Equipment and Disabled Vet $1.00
Boats over 5 tons $0.90

I am active duty military. Do I have to pay Personal Property Taxes?

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA), a Federal Act, sets forth that any person in the military service is exempt from taxation by all states except their home state or political subdivision. Vehicles registered in the name of the active military person only, are exempt from Personal Property Taxes. If a vehicle is jointly owned, and the spouse or other person named is non-military, the vehicle is taxable.

The Military Spouses Residency Relief Act, effective 11/11/09, amends the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. Spouses of active duty military members who have vehicles titled in their name or jointly with the service member may be exempt from personal property tax if certain conditions are met. Please contact the Commissioner of the Revenue at 757-926-8657 for more information.

I am in the military and lease a vehicle. Am I taxable?

The answer is yes, you are taxable. Leased vehicles are not owned by the person but by the lease company. Therefore, they are taxable.

When are Personal Property Taxes due?

Personal Property Taxes are normally due twice a year (June 5 and December 5). If a vehicle is registered late, a date other than June 5 or December 5, is the due date for your Personal Property Taxes for that period only.

What if I am late paying my Personal Property Taxes?

Your Personal Property Tax is delinquent the day after the due date. At that time an automatic ten percent (10%) penalty is added, based on original assessed value. After one (1) month interest begins to accrue. Late payments remitted without the appropriate penalties and interest will be considered partial payments.

I want to pay my Personal Property Taxes, but I find myself in financial straits at this time. What can I do?

If you want to pay but due to circumstances are unable, contact the Delinquent Section of the Treasurer's Office (926-8731). They will work with you on paying your taxes within a reasonable time period. They may not relieve the penalties and interest, but they can forestall any legal action.

I just sold my vehicle. What do I have to do?

You must notify DMV and the Commissioner of the Revenue. The Commissioner's Office must have the information in writing.

I just moved to Newport News, what do I have to do?

In order to receive your tax bill in a timely manner, you must notify in writing the Office of the Commissioner of the Revenue of your change of address. If you fail to contact the Commissioner's Office and do not receive your tax bill, you will still be responsible for any late payment penalties and interest.

I just moved out of Newport News to another City/County, what do I have to do?

Please notify the Commissioner of Revenue's Office in writing of your residence and the date you moved from Newport News. Your tax bill will be prorated accordingly and a corrected bill will be mailed to you.

Commissioner of the Revenue
2400 Washington Avenue
Newport News, VA 23607


Phone (757) 926-8657
Fax (757) 247-2628
Hours: 8:00am - 5:00pm, Monday-Friday

I just moved out of Newport News to another State, what do I have to do?

Please provide a copy of the new state registration on your vehicle. Your vehicle remains taxable to Newport News until it is registered in the other state. Please mail or fax to the Commissioner of the Revenue at:

Commissioner of the Revenue
2400 Washington Avenue
Newport News, VA 23607

Fax (757) 247-2628.

How does the Personal Property Tax Relief Act of 1998 (PPTRA) affect me?

The PPTRA provides tax relief to citizens and their families on a portion of personal property taxes paid on the first $20,000 of value for qualifying vehicles. Personal Property tax on vehicles valued at $1,000 or less has been eliminated and the Commonwealth's Share is 100%. For 2002 the Commonwealth's Share is 70% of the personal property tax bill for qualifying vehicles.

The Personal Property Tax Relief Act of 1998 provides tax relief for any passenger car, motorcycle, or pickup or panel truck having a registered gross weight of less than 7,501 pounds. The vehicle must be owned and leased by an individual and NOT for business purposes. A vehicle is considered to be used for business purposes if:

  • More than 50% of the mileage for the year is used as a business expense for Federal Income Tax purposes OR reimbursed by an employer;
  • More than 50% of the depreciation associated with the vehicle is deducted as a business expense for Federal Income Tax;
  • The cost of the vehicle is expensed pursuant to Section 179 of the Internal Revenue Service Code; or
  • The vehicle is leased by an individual and the leasing company pays the tax without reimbursement from the individual.

Vehicles qualified for tax relief are noted on your tax bill and show a reduction for the portion of the tax the Commonwealth will pay. For qualified vehicles, your tax bill is reduced by the applicable tax relief percentage for the tax year on the first $20,000 of value. The City of Newport News will be reimbursed by the Commonwealth for the amount of the reduction once you have paid the balance due shown on your bill. If your qualifying vehicle's assessed value is $1,000 or less, your tax has been eliminated and the Commonwealth's share is 100%. Tax relief is calculated using the City of Newport News effective rate in effect on August 1, 1997.

You are required to certify annually to the City of Newport News that your vehicle remains qualified to receive car tax relief. Therefore, it is important that you review the information sent to you by your locality to be sure that your vehicles are properly qualified. This information may be included on items such as personal property tax returns, decal applications or tax bills. If your vehicle is improperly qualified or you are uncertain whether your vehicle would be eligible for car tax relief because it is used part of the time for business purposes, contact the Office of the Commissioner of Revenue at 926-8657. When you display your City of Newport News decal and pay your taxes on qualified vehicles, you are certifying to the City of Newport News that your vehicle has been qualified correctly.

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Marty Eubank

Marty G Eubank, Treasurer
(757) 926-8740
Current and Delinquent Taxes
(757) 926-8731
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(757) 926-8643
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(757) 926-8731
(757) 926-8274
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Marty G Eubank, Treasurer
PO Box 975
Newport News, VA 23607

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