Motor tax is payable on an annual, half-yearly or quarterly basis. The rates applicable to the half-yearly and quarterly options are 55.5% and 28.25% of the annual charge, respectively. These relativities have remained generally consistent since the 1960's.
The loss of income that would arise from changing these arrangements would have a negative impact on the total collected via motor tax and would have to be borne elsewhere in the motor tax system or through the taxation system generally. The loss to the Exchequer arising from the elimination of the additional charge for these options has been estimated at just under €48.4m, based on the volume of transactions in 2018.
Each half-yearly or quarterly renewal of motor tax requires the same administrative procedures as the annual renewal process. Accordingly, aside from the loss in receipts, any consideration of re-balancing of the charges for non-annual discs must take account of the fact that overheads, both direct and indirect, would increase exponentially if the change were to result in increased volumes of transactions.