Motor vehicle duty is payable when you apply to register, or transfer registration of, a motor vehicle. An exemption from motor vehicle duty may be available in certain circumstances. These are:

  • Registering or transferring registration of a motor vehicle to a beneficiary following the death of the registered owner,
  • Registering or transferring registration of a motor vehicle used as a demonstrator vehicle or LMCT trading stock,
  • Registering or transferring registration of a motor vehicle between spouses, between domestic partners, or as a result of the breakdown of a marriage or a domestic relationship,
  • Registering a motor vehicle in the name of a person where the vehicle was previously registered in the same name interstate. The Commissioner must be satisfied that the interstate registration was not made for the purpose of avoiding Victorian duty,
  • Registering a motor vehicle in the name of a corporate or unincorporated body and marked with that body’s name. The body must be established for a public purpose and not for private gain and the vehicle must be used only for carrying disabled or handicapped people to training, education or employment,
  • Registering or transferring registration of a motor vehicle in the name of an incapacitated person. The motor vehicle must be designed solely to carry an incapacitated person and not be used to drive any other person.
  • Registering or transferring registration of a motor vehicle (but not a taxi cab) that is modified to carry a wheelchair and is used to carry an incapacitated person. The vehicle can be registered in the name of the incapacitated person, their parent or guardian if they are a minor, or a relative of, or carer for, them,
  • Registering or transferring registration of a government or charitable, benevolent or religious institution motor vehicle (but not a taxi cab) that is modified to carry a wheelchair and is used to convey an incapacitated person. The vehicle must be marked with the name of the registered operator, relevant government department or agency,
  • Registering, or transferring registration of a motor vehicle, to an incapacitated war veteran who is assessed pursuant to the Veterans’ Entitlement Act 1986 or someone who has been assessed under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 as suffering a particular level of impairment because of an injury or disease whilst with the Defence forces and does not operate another vehicle without a fee,
  • Registering or transferring certain motor vehicles in the name of a primary producer which are to be used solely in the business of the registered operator as a primary producer. These are special work vehicles (body type SWV1 and SWV2) and special purpose vehicles (type O). They include heavy trailers, tractors, mobile cranes, fire engines, truck-mounted concrete pumps, and boring plants,
  • Registering or transferring registration of mobile plant and plant-based special purpose vehicles (type P). Mobile plant is any motor vehicle that is not designed solely for carrying passengers, is under 4.5 tonnes mass rating for charging (MRC) and that may use public roads for access. Carrying a load must be incidental to the purpose(s) for which the vehicle was built (except in the case of concrete pumps and fire trucks). Mobile plant includes backhoes, excavators, bulldozers, headers, forklift, scrapers and tractors. It does not include tow trucks.
  • Special purpose vehicles (type P) are more than 4.5 tonnes MRC and generally make little use of the road network. They are built or permanently modified primarily for off-road use. They include agricultural tractors, self-propelled agricultural harvesters, bulldozers, backhoes, graders, front-end loaders and heavy excavators,
  • Registering or transferring registration of firefighting and emergency response motor vehicles owned and registered by a State Emergency Service volunteer unit or a Country Fire Authority or a municipal council that are certified as equipped for, and exclusively used for, combating fire outbreaks or for emergency response,
  • Registering or transferring registration of a vehicle to be registered in the name of St John’s Ambulance Australia (Victoria) Inc which is used for the transport of disabled, handicapped or injured passengers,
  • Registering or transferring registration of certain consular vehicles. This depends on the post held by the person in whose name the vehicle is to be registered,
  • Transferring registration of a motor vehicle bought for a minor from the nominee or trustee to that person when they become an adult,
  • Transferring registration of a motor vehicle solely to trustees because of the appointment or retirement or other change in trustees,
  • Registering or transferring registration of a motor vehicle by an interstate motor car trader, but only in the course of carrying out their business,
  • Transferring registration of a motor vehicle following an amalgamation of industrial organisations where the transfer is made in accordance with the rules of the transferring organisation,
  • Transferring registration of a motor vehicle as a result of the vehicle becoming an asset of a receiving body under Part 3 of the Financial Sector (Business Transfer and Group Restructure) Act 1999, and
  • Transferring registration of a motor vehicle which has been repossessed under a security interest, being an interest that secured payment of a debt or other obligation  

Note: there is no provision in the Duties Act 2000 (the Act) to generally exempt charitable organisations from duty. Instead, one of the above exemptions may apply.

People with a physical disability

Under the Act, if you have a physical disability you will pay less duty when you register or transfer a motor vehicle which has been modified to enable you to drive. The duty reduction reflects the reasonable cost of the modification.

In cases where the reasonable cost of the modification is greater than the duty you are required to pay, you can make a claim to pay no duty at all. Please contact us on 13 21 61 for more information.

Applying for an exemption or reduction of duty

If you are applying for an exemption or reduction of duty, you must lodge an application and provide supporting documentation.