Motor Tax - General Information

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Motor tax can be paid at the motor tax offices of your Local Authority. Contact your local Motor Tax Office. Motor tax can also be renewed online for most cars through the online motor tax service.

If your query relates to Vehicle Ownership Changes or Online Motor Tax, please note that these issues are dealt with by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport.  Details are as follows:

Driver and Vehicle Computer Services Division,
Department of Transport,Tourism and Sport,
Shannon Town Centre,
Shannon,
Co. Clare.

Tel: 0818 411 412
Fax: +353 (0)61 363 480
Email: motortax@dttas.ie

If your query relates to First Registration of Vehicles or importing of Vehicles please note that these issues are dealt with by the Revenue Commissioners

If your query relates to Driving Tests please note that these issues are dealt with by the Road Safety Authority .  **Tel: 1890 40 60 40/ +353 (0) 96 25000

If your query relates to Vehicle Testing Standards please note that these issues are dealt with by the Road Safety Authority .  **Tel: 1890 40 60 40/ +353 (0) 96 25000

Motor Tax Offices issue;

  • motor tax discs,
  • duplicate registration books/vehicle licensing certificates/vehicle registration certificates/discs
  • trade plates for motor traders
  • process first licensing of goods trailers over 1524kg (3,500 kg Gross Vehicle Weight) unladen weight
  • appoint garages as authorised testers for commercial vehicles,
  • appoint authorised weighbridges;
  • vehicle ownership changes for vehicles registered before 1 January, 1993.

Please note, over-the-counter transactions must be carried out at the Motor Tax Office in the county in which the vehicle is ordinarily kept.

Postal applications should also be made to the Motor Tax Office in the county in which the vehicle is ordinarily kept.

Ownership changes for vehicles registered on or after 1 January, 1993 are dealt with by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Computer Services Division, Department of Transport,Tourism and Sport,  Shannon Town Centre, Co. Clare. (Phone: 0818 411 412). Email- motortax@dttas.ie

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Motor Tax System for New Cars

From July 2008 there has been two separate motor tax systems for cars. Cars under the existing motor tax system will continue to be taxed based on engine size (c.c). New cars registered from 1 July 2008 will be taxed based on their CO2 emissions level. 
The licensing for motor tax of new cars registered from 1st July 2008 is based on twelve CO2 bands.  The rates range from 120 euro a year for the greenest cars to 2,350 euro for cars with the highest emissions rating.

New cars registered between 1 January 2008 and 30 June 2008 initially had their motor tax charged on the basis of engine size. If it was beneficial for these cars to switch to the CO2 based motor tax system, this was effected on the first renewal of motor tax after 1 July 2008, and these cars will now remain with a CO2 basis of assessment for motor tax. If it was beneficial for these cars to remain with their motor tax being charged on the basis of engine size, then these cars remained with this basis of assessment for motor tax and will now continue to remain with an engine size basis of assessment for motor tax.

How will the level of CO2 be known?

Before a new model is put on sale in Europe, it must undergo a series of tests to ensure that it has achieved approved standards regarding safety, environmental impact, etc.  This process is called Type Approval and each car achieving the approved standards is issued with a Certificate of Conformity.

Among the details included on the Certificate of Conformity is the level of CO2 emissions of the car.  This is the information that will be used for taxation purposes for both vehicle registration tax (VRT) and motor tax.

This CO2 rating will be captured initially by the Revenue Commissioners at vehicle registration tax stage and passed on to the national vehicle file for use in connection with the administration of the motor tax system.  In the absence of a Certificate of Conformity and the Revenue Commissioners not otherwise being satisfied as to the CO2 rating of a car by reference to any other supporting documentation, the motorist will be required to pay the highest vehicle tax rate (VRT).  The same approach will apply to Motor Tax.

Cars registered outside of Ireland

A private car first registered abroad prior to 1 January 2008 will always be taxed on engine size (c.c.). The CO2 based motor tax system does not apply to second-hand imports that were registered abroad prior to 2008.

A private car first registered abroad between 1 January 2008 and 30 June 2008 inclusive and subsequently registered in Ireland will be taxed on whichever is the lesser of the motor tax rates based on engine size (c.c.) or CO2 emissions. The comparison is based on the motor tax rates as of 1 December 2011.

A private car first registered abroad after 1 July 2008 and subsequently registered in Ireland will be taxed on CO2 emissions.

The aim of the new motor tax system is to encourage the use of smaller, cleaner, fuel-efficient cars in the fight against climate change by reducing the emission of carbon dioxide (CO2) from cars to help protect the environment and improve local air quality.

CO2 Bands

Please see the motor tax rates from the 1st of January 2016 document for information in relation to the various CO2 bands.

What must I do before I pay motor tax?

Register the vehicle with the Revenue Commissioners . This registration process deals with the question of Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT) and will generally be processed by the motor dealer.

When must I pay motor tax?

Liability for motor tax arises when a vehicle is used in a public place/road.
Motor tax discs are issued for periods of three, six, or 12 whole calendar months and are not issued in respect of months already elapsed. Vehicles with an annual tax of 119  euro or less can only be taxed for a 12-month period.  As discs are issued for whole calendar months, the preferred option on first taxing is to register or first use the vehicle early in a month. Vehicle owners who first tax a recently registered vehicle after 28 May 2004 will be issued with a new Vehicle Registration Certificate by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Computer Services Division (Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport). It should be noted that there is a surcharge for non-annual discs and motor tax should be paid when due, as monthly arrears are charged at one tenth of the annual rate.

Where do I pay it?

Motor tax can be paid at the motor tax offices of your Local Authority - contact your local Motor tax office

Motor tax can also be paid online for certain vehicles.

** Note that the rates charged for the use of 1890 (LoCall) numbers may vary among different service providers.

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