Business Tangible Taxes
Real Estate Taxes
DMV Registration Blocks
Settling Taxes After Death
When can I expect my bill?
The City mails tax bills once a year in late June after the tax rate is set. If you do not receive a tax bill by the second week of July, visit our website or call the office for updates on the mailing date. State law requires you to ascertain and pay your taxes even if you do not receive a bill.
What are the tax payment deadlines?
Quarterly tax payments line up with the City’s fiscal year, July 1-June 30. Payments are due on the following dates:
- First Quarter – July 24
- Second Quarter – October 24
- Third Quarter – January 24
- Fourth Quarter – April 24
How can I pay my taxes?
- Enclose the quarterly coupon with your check payable to City of Providence in the envelope provided with your bill for automated processing. If you don’t have a coupon, mail the payment to City Hall (see below).
- You can also mail your payment to Tax Collector, City Hall-Rm 203, 25 Dorrance Street, Providence, RI 02903.
- Remember to include the coupons for each account and quarter you are paying. If you are paying an entire year’s tax, include all the coupons. If you do not have your coupons, you can print a duplicate bill from the online site (see below) to include with payment.
- Pay online at Billpay.providenceri.gov with a credit/debit card or e-check.
- Call 508-381-5455 Monday – Friday, 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM to make a payment with a debit/credit card or E-check.
- You can pay in person with checks, cash, or debit/credit card at the teller windows in the Collector’s office, City Hall Room 203. We are open Monday- Friday from 8:30-4:30. In July and August, we close at 4:00.
THROUGH YOUR BANK:
- These payments MUST be processed in City Hall because they arrive without a coupon. Direct payment to Tax Collector, City Hall-Rm 203, 25 Dorrance Street, Providence, RI 02903. If you send the payment to the Post office Box address, your payment will be delayed.
- You can use your own bank’s electronic banking tools to pay your taxes; however to ensure that your account is credited by the due date you should arrange for delivery of the check ON OR BEFORE each quarterly due date. Also, ensure your City account number or plat/lot is provided in the “memo” section of the check since the bank cannot forward the payment coupon.
For more information about interest accrual below.
Use our Reminder Service to Make On-time Payments
We offer an email reminder service to alert you 7-10 days before a quarter is due. We will also send an email to let you know when we are putting bills in the mail.
The service is the same reminder for all subscribers. It cannot give you tax balance, and it will not know if you have moved or sold your house. When you no longer need this service, use the unsubscribe link in the reminder email.
Complete your contact information through the reminder service link and put our address in your contacts link.
Interest on unpaid taxes
Interest is charged at the rate of 1% per month from July of the fiscal year. So, interest in August is 2%, September is 3%, etc.
If any installment is missed or paid late, interest is charged on the unpaid portion of the entire tax bill, including quarters not yet due, but only the missing quarter(s) must be paid to restore the account to a current status.
if you miss Quarter Two (due October 24) to bring the account current in December, you will have to pay the October amount, plus 6% interest calculated on Quarters Two, Three and Four. The interest for December is 6% since the rate is 1% per month from July.
If you are having problems paying any installment on time, or have any question regarding receipt of your payment, please contact the Collector’s office, contact information is listed in the “Contact us” tab at the bottom of the page.
Does the City use collection agencies for unpaid taxes?
Yes. The City has contracted with MCA (Municipal Collection Agency) to collect the delinquent car and business taxes, but not real estate taxes. The City has contracted with Rossi Law Office for litigation of accounts when normal collection attempts have failed. Unpaid taxes are NOT reported to credit rating agencies.
Business (tangible) tax
I would like to buy a business but do not know what taxes are owed. What can I do?
If you are buying or selling a business, the Collector’s Office will furnish you with a current balance for the business (and the real estate if that is involved in the sale).
In RI, business and excise taxes are billed one year BEHIND the current year. Stated another way, a brand new business pays no tax in Year One of its operation. In Year Two, it pays the tax on the value of the business fixtures as it existed in Year One.
Unless the seller settles his final tax, a new owner will be liable for the tax of the seller for his last year of operation. This also means your purchase price should figure into it the taxes due in the final year of the person you are buying it from.
If a business’s tax is not current, it cannot renew its license. Therefore if your business is denied the “renew by mail” option for its license, it may be that the taxes are unpaid.
Real Estate Taxes
Change of ownership
In a sale of property: Taxes on property are levied on the land/building, not on the individual: when a property is sold, the amount of tax owed by the seller and by the buyer is determined as of the date of the sale. Taxes are paid from the price paid for the property along with other fees, such as for the closing attorney. Examine the closing document HUD-1 to find these figures or ask your closing attorney.
In a transfer via will or by joint tenancy, the new holder of the property should file a deed with the Recorder of Deeds and alert the Assessor’s Office to any change in the mailing address for tax bills. It is a good practice to hire an attorney to draw up the deed transferring the property; city employees cannot perform this important transaction.
Tax rates and exemptions are assigned to property through the Assessor’s Office and are reviewed when the property transfers.
If you are disabled, over 65, visually impaired, or a veteran you should inquire in that office about available exemptions. If you live in the home you own, you are eligible for the lower Owner-Occupied tax rate, but you must apply for it in the Assessor’s Office.
Billing address changes for real estate
Contact the City Assessor to change the billing address for your real estate tax bill.
I just refinanced my mortgage and now the bank does not escrow or pay property taxes.
I just paid off my mortgage and the bank used to pay my taxes.
Contact the City Assessor to change the billing address to your home (or wherever you receive your mail.) Otherwise, tax bills and other notices will go to your old bank. Contact us in the Collector’s Office to check the payment status of your account and find out when you need to make your next payment.
Also consider signing up for E-mail notifications from the Tax Collector. The email notification will remind you when it is time to make the next quarterly installment.
If your bank has not already recorded the Discharge of Mortgage, you should record it yourself in the Recorder of Deeds Office.
My property is going up for tax sale. What does this mean?
Property is subject “tax sale” when the taxes are seriously delinquent. “Tax sale” means the City asks an interested third party to pay the taxes owed to the City in your place.
In exchange for the payment, the City gives a tax lien on your property in favor of the party who paid your taxes. The city does not have the power to sell your property for the unpaid tax. To remove the lien, you pay the back taxes, the current interest under state law, and fees. If you do not, the third party has the right after one year and one day (366 days), to take title to your property through the court. This proceeding is called “foreclosing the right of redemption.” This is a serious situation because you can lose your property by order of the court.
My house is listed for tax sale, are there any resources available to help me?
If you are an owner-occupier of a property listed for tax sale, Rhode Island Housing may be able to help you avoid tax sale. Rhode Island Housing is a non-profit institution with the mission to help Rhode Islanders with home ownership. You can learn more at http://www.rhodeislandhousing.org/
Motor Vehicle (Excise) Tax
CAR TAX DISCONTINUED
Beginning with the 2022 tax year, the car (excise) tax will no longer be levied in the State of Rhode Island.
Unpaid taxes for prior years are still due and collectible.
PLEASE NOTE: DMV Blocks are not automatically removed when payments are made. Contact the Tax Collector’s Office at 401-331-5252 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for removal of Blocks.
DMV Registration Blocks
Vehicle Registration Renewal Blocks with RIDMV
DMV no longer mails renewal paperwork to the owners of registered vehicles if there is a registration block. Notification letters are sent by DMV in Nov-Dec timeframe and in April.
City Policy: Once a registration block is imposed, payment IN FULL is required for clearance. If you have more than one vehicle registered in your name, all vehicles must be paid for clearance.
To Clear a Registration Block:
Settle your tax account
In Person: Come to the City Collector’s office with payment in full of the tax and interest (cash, money order, or debit/credit card). After payment, tell us you need a DMV release.
By Phone: 508-381-5455 Monday – Friday, 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM with a debit/credit card and email email@example.com your confirmation number. A clearance will be send to the DMV electronically.
Online: Go to the Online Tax payment System to find the payment portal for car (excise) tax. Pay via credit/debit card and email us your confirmation number. A clearance will be sent to the DMV electronically.
Through MCA/Rossi: If your prior year account has been placed with a City-contracted collection agent or law firm (MCA or Rossi) contact that office regarding payment and instructions to clear the account.
Are you current on your taxes and still have a block? If, at any point in time, a registration block is imposed, it is not automatically removed by payment. If DMV advised you that City clearance is required, but you are current on your taxes, contact us by phone at 401-331-5252 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Settling Taxes After Death
Real Estate Taxes
Taxes on property are levied on the land/building, not on the individual.
Just as with the sale or transfer of property among living persons, taxes are settled on real estate is during the transfer of that property at the closing. Taxes are paid from the price paid for the property (“proceeds”) along with other fees, such as for the closing attorney.
If property is not sold, but instead is passed on via will or by joint tenancy, the new holder of the property should file a deed with the Recorder of Deeds and alert the Assessor’s Office to any change in the mailing address for tax bills. It is a good practice to hire an attorney to draw up the deed transferring the property; city employees cannot perform this important transaction.
If the vehicle is part of the probated estate of the deceased, the excise taxes will be settled as part of the estate. If there is no probated estate, the vehicle tax is assessed up to the date of death. To settle these taxes, please visit the Collector’s Office with a copy of the death certificate to adjust and pay the balance.