Military Tax Information
Personal Property Returns & Taxes
As of January 1, 2007, Newport News will no longer require city decals. However, the Treasurer’s Office will be assessing a Vehicle License Fee (VLF). Please visit or contact the Office of the Treasurer for VLF questions.

Out-of-State Tags
When an automobile is licensed with out-of-state tags solely in the military member’s name, a Newport News personal property return is not required.

If you are in the Armed Services, not a resident of Virginia, and are a full time active duty military member, you may be exempt from the personal property tax and vehicle license fee based on your military status. In order to determine your eligibility, please provide a copy of a current year Leave and Earnings Statement(LES). You may upload your LES to our secure webpage at
For a property used in a business or trade, leased by the active duty military member and/or jointly titled with a spouse, please contact our office at 757-926-8657.

Military Spouses Residency Relief Act (SCRA)-Effective November 11, 2009
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 the following conditions are met:
  1. Spouse is absent from his/her state of legal residence solely to be with the service member in compliance with military orders and
  2. Service member and spouse have the same state of residence or domicile and not the state of Virginia and
  3. Vehicles are not used in a trade or business.
Annual documentation required:
  1. Copy of the service member's current Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) and
  2. Copy of military dependent identification card (front and back) and
  3. Affidavit (PDF) completed and signed by spouse of the service member
  4. Submit at least one supporting document proving spouse's domicile:
    • Spouse's voter registration from service member's state of residence/domicile
    • Spouse's current driver's license from service member's state of residence/domicile (exemption given based on issue date and expiration date on drivers license and cannot be expired within the years you are applying for the military exemption)
    • Documents showing spouse owns property, has drafted a will, claimed homestead exemption, or has qualified for and is currently receiving state benefits in service member's claimed state of residence / domicile.
It will be necessary to file annually a copy of your most current leave and earnings statement (LES) showing your name, social security number, state of residence and estimated time of separation (ETS) or separation date.

If your LES indicates a current year ETS or separation date, it will be necessary to provide your new ETS date. An updated leave and earnings statement (LES) or updated identification card with your new separation date will be acceptable.
If your LES is unobtainable at the time of registration, it will be necessary to file a copy of your leave and earnings statement before any accounts can be exempted from taxation.

NATO Members
NATO members and foreign military students are required to file a tax exemption letter from the appropriate agency each year. One letter is acceptable for all properties.

Individuals Residing on Federal Installations
Individuals residing on federal installations are required to file leave and earnings statements as all other individuals claiming exemption due to military status. Property owned by Virginia residents as well as property under lease, co-owned with a non-military, non-spouse or used in a trade or business is taxable regardless of physical location on a federally-owned installation.

Out of the State With Virginia Tags
If the vehicle is moved out of the state of Virginia and the Virginia tags are current, the non-Virginia resident armed service member must continue to provide a current LES to be considered for tax exemption. If the vehicle is licensed out-of-state, a copy of the new registration is required to remove this property from our tax rolls.

Questions & Additional Assistance
As always, special circumstances will be given special consideration. The Commissioner of the Revenue’s office is willing to work with individuals to provide the best possible service. If you have any problems or questions, please do not hesitate to call our office at 757-926-8657, submit a question online, or visit one of our offices.