Car Tax - Frequently Asked Questions


 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


How is my property tax calculated?

 The current tax rate is $4.57 per $100 of assessed value. To compute the tax on an item assessed at $5,000, divide the assessed value by 100 and multiply by the tax rate:

($5,000 ÷ 100) x $4.57 = $228.50

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Are there exceptions to the tax rate?

Yes. The following are currently taxed at a rate of one cent per $100: antique automobiles, certified van pool vehicles, vehicles equipped for the transportation of persons with disabilities, some vehicles owned by members of volunteer fire and rescue squads and auxiliary police, vehicles owned by certain elderly and disabled individuals, aircraft and flight simulators, and homeowner associations furniture, office and maintenance equipment. Mobile homes are taxed at the real estate tax rate.

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What if I don't receive forms in the mail?

Failure to receive forms does not exempt you from either the obligation to file or pay taxes on time. Forms may be obtained at the Government Center or by calling 703-222-8234 [TTY: 703-222-7594] or may be downloaded from this Web site.

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How are vehicles assessed?

The Statutes which govern personal property assessments for automobiles require that the value be (1) from a recognized pricing guide, (2) applied uniformly, and (3) as of January 1 of the tax year. To meet these requirements, Fairfax County, along with most other Virginia jurisdictions, uses the January edition of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Official Used Car Guide. For more information regarding vehicle assessments, please refer to our Car Values page.

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Under what conditions may an assessment be appealed?

If you believe that your vehicle has been overassessed, you may appeal the assessment. Body damage, rusting, and mileage are conditional factors for which adjustments in value are most frequently made.

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How do I appeal my assessment?

If your vehicle was in less than average condition as of January 1, submit a Car Tax Appeal form along with an itemized estimate detailing the extent of damage and the cost to repair the vehicle. Other acceptable documentation would be a copy of an insurance company estimate describing the cost to repair the damage. If your appeal is for a high mileage adjustment, please attach a copy of your most recent Safety Inspection slip, vehicle repair receipt or a similar document which identifies the mileage.

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 How soon does my vehicle need to be registered with Fairfax County?

The Fairfax County Code requires owners of motor vehicles newly acquired or moved into the County to file for car taxation within 60 days, otherwise a penalty for late filing will be assessed.

In addition to the property tax described above, Fairfax County also imposes a local vehicle registration license fee. For more information, please refer to our vehicle registration fee page. This fee is billed at the same time as the property tax.

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Do I need to buy a decal if I live in one of the towns?

Under Section 4-17.2 of the Fairfax County Code, owners of vehicles normally located within the towns of Clifton, Herndon or Vienna, are required to purchase a motor vehicle decal or pay a local vehicle registration license fee to the town, instead of paying the Fairfax County Local Vehicle Registration License Fee. If the town does not impose and collect such fee in any year, then vehicles normally located within that town become liable for the Fairfax County Local Vehicle Registration License Fee for that year.

Certain special rules for town residents apply. Please refer to our Vehicle Registration License fee page or contact your respective town for more information.

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 Do I need to register a leased vehicle with Fairfax County?

Most leasing companies require the lessee to register the vehicle with their local jurisdiction. The vehicle is registered in the name of the leasing company, and the car tax bills are sent directly to the leasing company for payment. Depending on your lease contract, the car taxes are either paid by the leasing company or the tax bill is forwarded to the lessee for payment.

You may register your leased vehicle on-line using our vehicle registration tool or download a registration form at http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dta/forms.htm.


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How do I register my vehicle for the Car Tax?

The Fairfax County Code requires owners of motor vehicles newly acquired or moved into the County to file for car taxation within 60 days, otherwise a penalty for late filing will be assessed.

You may file for the Car Tax in several ways. We recommend you perform this activity online:

  • You may file over the phone by telephoning 703-222-8234 [TTY: 703-222-7594]. To file by phone, you must have your temporary or permanent Virginia state registration.

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What should I do if I have sold my vehicle or moved my vehicle out of Fairfax County?

In Fairfax County, the car tax on motor vehicles (cars, trucks, motorcycles, and vans) is prorated to reflect the time the vehicle was normally garaged in the County. To ensure that your motor vehicle is taxed accurately, you must notify the County when a vehicle is moved out of the County or sold. This may be done in person by visiting our office, by telephone, or by email. You may also report vehicle sales or moves online using our vehicle update tool.

If you have sold your vehicle or moved the vehicle out of the County, the following information is required: property owner name and daytime phone number; vehicle identification number (VIN), year, make, and model or Fairfax County property number (if known); and date the vehicle was sold or relocated. If the vehicle was moved out of the County, you must also provide the new address.

Upon notification that a property has been moved or sold, the Department of Tax Administration will adjust your account.

Please note that vehicles which are moved out of Fairfax County to a non-prorating Virginia jurisdiction during the tax year are not prorated. Effective July 1, 1998, vehicles registered in Virginia but normally kept out of state are also taxable by the jurisdiction where registered.

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When are Car Tax payments due?

The majority of Car Tax bills are mailed in the summer and are due by October 5.

For vehicles bought or located in the County on or after July 1, bills are mailed in January of the following year and payment is due
February 15.

If a payment date falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or County holiday, the due date is the following business day.

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To whom do I make the check payable?

Checks or money orders should be made payable to "County of Fairfax."

Mail payments to:

Fairfax County Department of Tax Administration
12000 Government Center Parkway, Suite 223
Fairfax, VA 22035

US Postmark must be by the due date to avoid late charges.

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How do I purchase property at public auction for delinquent taxes?


DTA may also sell vehicles and certain business equipment at public auction for the collection of delinquent taxes. If you have questions or would like to be added to a potential bidders list for personal property public auctions, please send your contact information to DTA's Revenue Collection Division. Vehicles and equipment currently scheduled for Public Auction.

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Technical Questions: Web Administrator

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