Petitioning Taoiseach (Leader of Irish Government) Leo Varadkar and 5 others

Change "Unfair 2-Tier Irish Car Tax Law"




​​​​​Clarification - proposed Government tax increase on diesel fuel

This petition does not endorse or agree with the Irish Government proposal to increase the tax on diesel fuel. This is grossly unfair on those who were encouraged to buy diesel cars to reduce CO2 emissions. 

The issue of toxic fumes and particulates from diesel cars should be addressed by 

- Tax on the purchase of NEW diesel cars

- Annual Motor Taxation of those newly purchased diesel cars.

Fairness in Taxation must take priority over all other considerations. 

------ "Unfair Car Tax" Petition -------


Please sign this Petition if you agree that:

It is grossly unfair, unjust and discriminatory that Irish car owners of older pre-2008 cars have to pay penal annual Motor Tax to use Irish roads while those who can afford newer cars pay very low annual motor tax. Pre-2008 car owners are subsidising the motor tax (and water tax) of owners of newer cars. It is a 2-Tier Tax!

Diesel cars ..... to be banned: Paris in 2017, Mexico, Athens, London, Stuttgart, Amsterdam, Athens ... maybe Dublin!

Minister Denis Naughten has called for submissions on "Clean Air Policy Development". A submission on behalf of the 32,000 who have signed this petition was made on 27th April 2017.

1. Stop penalising pre-2008 car owners with unfair, "2-Tier" Motor Tax.

2. Tax refund/credit for all pre-2008 car owners who were wrongly overcharged in their Motor Tax since 2008.


The Irish Motor Tax Law is a "2-Tier" Tax Law. One Law for those who can afford newer cars and another law for the rest. It is totally unacceptable! Political instability and social unrest will continue until unfair, regressive taxes like this, are resolved to the satisfaction of the electorate.

The Irish Automobile Association (AA) says reforms needed in Irish motor tax which currently discriminates very heavily against owners of older cars (pre-2008).

This odious car tax law favours those who are "well off" and can afford new cars and penalises those who can not .... young people travelling to work, rural dwellers who don't have access to DART, Luas or buses, for work and to transport kids to school, pensioners and lower income families.

  • €444 is the average Irish Motor Tax for pre 2008 cars
  • €215 is the average Irish Motor Tax for post 2008 cars
  • 106% more tax on average paid by owners of older cars to use Irish roads - (Dept of Finance figures - 2012)

New v Old Annual Irish Motor Tax comparison ...

  • €280 annual Motor Tax for new Mercedes C-class 2.1L  
  • €270 annual Motor Tax for new BMW 318 2L  
  • €580 (4x€145) annual Motor Tax for Pre-2008 Toyota Avensis 1.6L 

€300 more tax paid for use of Irish roads by owners of older cars.

It is a bad law, an extremely regressive law, an unacceptable law, an odious law, a dubious law, a  2-Tier tax law, a discriminatory law. It is absolutely outrageous. 

It is a serious maladministration by the Irish Civil Service of the EU Carbon Directive.

Brexit was due to unacceptable laws from unthinking, interfering and maladministration of EU  Directives ... like EU Carbon Directive impact on Irish Car Tax, adversely affecting the lowest socio-economic groups - young people starting work, pensioners and low income groups. 

Loony Greens: We now learn that Diesel Cars emit soot and toxic gases, polluting the air we breath. 70% of new Irish cars are diesel due to the loony Greens and Fianna Fail Motor Tax Law of 2008. Owners of older Petrol Cars are the good guys! 

Diesel Cars, artificially and wrongly promoted by the Fianna Fail /Greens Motor Tax Law,  emit dangerous toxins. "Soot from diesel vehicles is significant contributor to ill health and global warming," So Irish owners of older mainly petrol cars are the good guys, yet taxed with penal rates since 2008.

4 cities to ban diesel cars : Paris from July 1, 2017, Madrid, Athens and Mexico City to follow and many more in the pipeline. Holland debating total ban on ALL diesel cars from 2025.

 Conor Faughnan of AA agrees Irish Car Tax system is unfair. Listen to him on RTE radio at

 AA says reforms needed in Irish motor tax which currently discriminates very heavily against owners of older cars.

“Approximately 75% of Ireland’s 1.88 million private cars date from 2008 or earlier and are therefore taxed on the old system based on engine size.” Says Faughnan. “For those that have larger engines the tax burden on them has become very unfair.

“Someone lucky enough to be able to buy a brand new luxury car for €50,000 is likely to pay €270 per annum in road tax. Compare that to someone who cannot afford to replace a 10 year old run-about with a 2.2 litre petrol engine; that car costs €951 to tax every year (€1072 if they can only afford to pay per quarter). It is an anomaly that needs to be addressed.”

(€439 Million from Car Tax is used to fund Irish Water each year! So owners of older cars are also subsidising the Water Services of those who can afford new cars. Water Services should be funded by general taxation or metered usage, "with exemptions for inability to pay", BUT NOT by penal tax loaded on pre-2008 car owners!)

 ****** Simon Coveney Minister for Housing Planning & Local Government presented with this petition containing 27,500 signatures and 4000 comments (not linked to names) on 14th May 2016 *****

You can view the Petition Comments here ...

 "No Irish Need Apply" for the low car tax unless you are "well off" and can afford a New Car .... by County Manager.

 (Note: your email is NOT made available to any 3rd party including the originator of this petition. It is used only to automatically communicate with you from the petition site. You can request its deletion by at any time in the future)

----------------- FINE GAEL accepted it was a bad law! -------

Fine Gael (Phil Hogan TD) accepted that it was an unfair car tax law. Quote from Dáil Éireann Debate Vol. 647 No. 4 in 2008 :-

"The extent to which such people "will be penalised" will depend on their incomes and the value of the cars they can afford."

-------------------------- UK MPs -----------------------------------------

The UK Parliament refused to pass this unfair penal car tax law in 2004 (by EU Carbon Directive) and amended the legislation to deliver a fair UK car tax law and represent the wishes of their constituents. (UK has a functioning Democracy reflecting its Electorate's wishes but Irish TDs led by the Fianna Fail & Greens "Whip" political parties passed this odious law in 2008.)

All taxes in Democracies are ultimately by consent. Progressive, appropriate, fair and moderate taxes are acceptable to fund necessary efficient public services. Regressive taxes (like Car Tax, LPT, Water Tax, VAT on new houses, Anti-Family Individualisation Tax, Planning tax, 3 pensions tax, etc... ) are not acceptable. Constructing a fair tax system requires a clear understanding of what constitutes regressive v progressive taxes and unless this forms the basis for the Irish tax system then political instability (100,000 on the streets) and social unrest will continue  ....

France scrapped its hated regressive Car Tax in 2001 and put the tax on fuel. Italy scrapped its hated regressive LPT on Family Homes in Dec 2015. Sweden scrapped its hated regressive Inheritance tax. Abolishing regressive taxes delivers economic justice and social progress and political stability.

You have the right to remain silent but it is NOT recommended, because the injustice will just continue for you, your kids and grand kids.

Only YOU (by your vote) have the power to change this unfair, regressive Irish Car Tax law. Please bring your brains to the Polling Booths.

---------------- Petition Presented to Minister for Finance --------

The first submission of 13,000 signatures with 4000 comments was presented to the Minister for Finance at the Dept of Finance on 14/04/2016

----------------Submitted to EU Petitions Committee---------------

EU Petitions Committee: This "Unfair Car Tax Petition" was also submitted at 13,000 signatures to the EU Petitions Committee at:-

Case: maladministration of EU Carbon and Water Directives leading to improper implementation, placing all the tax burden on pre-2008 car owners who can least afford it.

........ News Flash! : Dec 2016 : EU Petitions Committee accepts the Unfair Irish Motor Tax petition for Investigation.

------------------------- Car Insurance Petition ------------------------

Car Insurance Petition:

-------------------------VESTED INTERESTS--------------------------

VESTED INTERESTS: A tax bias that artificially promotes the purchase of new cars is driven by vested interests (Political Parties passing Pro-Lobby Laws not Pro-Citizen) and does not comply with the wishes of the electorate. Who benefits most from this odious Car Tax law? Certainly not the 1,000,000 Owners of older pre-2008 cars!

---------------------- Life Essentials - Not for Taxing -------------

Life Essentials should not be directly taxed in modern civilised progressive Democracies:-

  • Food,
  • Water,
  • Air,
  • Shelter (family homes) Italy abolished their hated Tax on Family Homes 2015. Sweden abolished Inheritance tax.
  • Personal mobility (Cars) France abolished their Car Tax in 2001),
  • Children's cloths!
  • Sanitation
  • Healthcare
  • Education

..... direct tax on the Essentials for Life is unacceptable. Only you have the power to make these changes by your vote.

------------ VOTE for Elimination of Regressive Taxes ------

Please Bring Your Brains to the Polling Booths.

Do not vote for Political Parties (private clubs) who pass regressive tax laws like Irish Car Tax Law (and many others) and empower Revenue to take the regressive taxes from your pay, pensions and medical expenses refunds.

Progressive, appropriate, fair, moderate taxes are acceptable to fund efficient and effective necessary public services.

 -------------- Make the Internet work for You ------------------------

Please email this Car Tax Petition link: - to your friends, your family members, your work colleagues, like and share on Facebook, Tweet this link on Twitter

------------------------ LPT -----------------------------------------------

The regressive Local Property Tax (LPT) law on Family Homes also deserves your signature at:-

  • Italy scrapped its hated LPT law on Family Homes in Dec 2015.
  • Irish Revenue are now taking the LPT from the Medical Expenses Refunds of pensioners when they fail to keep up the LPT tax payments. A bad regressive tax law made worse by maladministration!

------------------Internet - Your "Virtual March" ---------------------

 The internet opens the door to Direct Citizen Democracy and empowers you to effect change for the better. This is your "Virtual Street Protest March" .....  make it work for YOU!



Ireland does not have a car industry. The Irish Government's artificial promotion of the purchase of new cars, by a very dubious tax bias, transfers unnecessary wealth out of the economy each year which would support 20,000 Irish wealth generating jobs.  Who benefits from this regressive odious car tax law introduced by Fianna Fail ....?

---------------------- A Fairer Car Tax System --------------------------


1. Base Tax: for road use / upkeep, based on the value of the car (as per some US states - exemption for low value cars / lower socio-economic groups (less than $6000 US threshold) - NCT assures car safety of all vehicles on the road). 

2. CO2 Tax: based on fuel consumption per annum (CO2 emissions per Km x Kilometres per annum recorded at NCT tests x tax rate).

This would be a fairer, "progressive", car tax system. It would also meet the Canons of Taxation requirements.

Ideally the car tax should be absorbed into the fuel tax. However, this could add 17c per litre to Irish fuel cost. It would add just 6c per litre if Motor Tax management / admin, Garda time and other savings are taken into account.

France abolished its Car Tax in 2001. Many other countries operate a "progressive" annual car tax reducing with the age/value of the car.

Initial Car Tax Law adjustment:-

  • Pre-2008 cars revert to 2005 tax rates adjusted for inflation to 2016
  • Post-2008 cars tax rates increased to be overall revenue neutral.
  • Overall tax bias to be in favour of car life longevity - conservation of wealth and minimisation of opportunity cost of purchase of imported new cars..

Stage 2 - move annual Car Tax to fuel tax - revenue neutral.



All taxation in Democracies is ultimately by consent. Taxation in civilised societies complies with Internationally accepted norms.  These norms are called the Canons of Taxation.

Irish Car Tax Law DOES NOT COMPLY with the "Canons of Taxation":-

- REGRESSIVE: LOW TAX on high-income earners (owners of new cars), yet HIGH TAX on low-income earners (owners of older cars).

UNFAIR: Favours the wealthy who can afford new cars and penalises those who can not.

UNJUST: - Lower-income groups cannot afford the high penal annual road tax for basic personal transport mobility of travel to work, shopping, kids to school, medical services etc. Default can mean jail for the poor.

UNEQUAL- Lessens the freedom of those who cannot afford new cars - the less wealthy, taking a greater amount of their disposable income.

- NOT PROPORTIONATE: High value luxury car owners pay LESS annual car tax than owners of older lower value cars.

UNJUST ENRICHMENT: High annual car tax on low-income groups used by Political Parties to bail out (enrich) private companies (banks) and subsidise Roads and Water Services of others.

LEGITIMATE EXPECTATIONS: To drive on Irish public roads for a fair, equitable and moderate tax.

FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT: Freedom for all Irish road users to drive on Irish public roads, without 'some' having to pay a penal annual road tax.

DEPRIVED OF PROPERTY: Not to be forced off the road by penal annual car tax and unable to use one's property (car).

CLIMATE OF FEAR: Free of fear of the law due to the burden of penal car tax. Fear of interest, penalties and jail.

VESTED INTERESTS: A tax bias that artificially promotes the purchase of new cars is driven by vested interests (Political Parties passing Pro-Lobby Laws not Pro-Citizen) and does not comply with the wishes of the electorate.

This petition will be delivered to:
  • Taoiseach (Leader of Irish Government)
    Leo Varadkar
  • Leader of Fianna Fail
    Michael Martin TD,
  • Minister for Transport
    Shane Ross TD,
  • Secretary General Dept Environment
    John McCarthy
  • Secretary General Dept of Finance
    Derek Moran
  • Minister for the Environment
    Denis Naughten

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