N.C. begins Tag and Tax Together program

Imari Scarbrough Staff Writer

September 3, 2013

The state of North Carolina has begun its new Tag and Tax Together program for collecting vehicle taxes.

The new program means taxpayers will pay their annual vehicle inspection fee, registration renewal fee, and vehicle property tax in the same month each year. Although inspection fees will still be paid to the inspection station, only one payment will be required to pay for both the annual tag and vehicle tax, according to the N.C. Department of Transportation. These fees will be payable in person, online or by mail.

According to the DOT, “No owner will have to pay taxes twice in the same tax year for the same vehicle. It is important to look at the vehicle property tax year rather than the calendar year. By law, the tax year for your vehicle begins on the first day of the first month following the date your previous registration expires or the new registration is applied for. While it is possible to pay twice in a calendar year, no vehicle owner will pay twice in the same tax year or for the same 12-month period.”

The DOT provided an example on the program’s page. “A vehicle with an August renewal date (sticker) was renewed in August 2012, taxes due and paid Dec. 1, 2012,” it said. “The taxes are for the period of September 2012 to the end of August 2013. Now, when the owner renews tags in August 2013 and pays taxes at that time, the taxes are for the same period, September 2013 to the end of August 2014.”

Anson County tax assessor Larry Newton explained it further. “Anybody that has a renewal from Sept. 1 forward will pay the Tax and Tag at the DMV,” he said. “If last year’s taxes are not paid on the vehicle, they’ll be directed to the collections office at the tax office to pay that tax bill plus the current tax bill before the tag can be renewed.”

The new tax collection system only applies to vehicle property taxes and does not include other property taxes (i.e., for homes). It does, however, apply to trailers, etc., according to Newton. “Anything that’s tagged, it covers,” he said.

Newton said that this new system will improve the collection rate in vehicle property taxes drastically, as money will be paid up front and billed at one time.

The inspection rules have not changed. “You have to have an inspection less than 90 days old to renew the tag,” Newton said.

For more information on the new program, visit