Rates and Māori land
Do rates have to be paid on Māori land?
Rates must be paid on all Māori land, and all General land owned by Māori, unless the land comes under one of the exceptions in the rates legislation, or the local council decides to remit (not collect) or postpone collection of rates for the land.
Land that’s not rateable under the ratings legislation
Rates don’t have to be paid for the following types of land:
- Māori customary land
- an area of land that’s used as an urupā (Māori burial ground)
- an area of land that’s set aside for a marae or meeting place
- land that’s been set aside as a Māori reservation for the common use and benefit of the people of Aotearoa New Zealand (but homes on reserved land can still be rated)
- an area of Māori freehold land on which a meeting house has been built, and
- Māori freehold land that has been specifically exempted from rates by an Order in Council, on the recommendation of the Māori Land Court.
Local councils can remit or postpone collection of rates
Local councils can decide to:
- forgive rates that have not been paid on Māori land
- stop rates from being charged on most land that is not being used
- create a process for remitting rates on Māori land that is being developed
- cause land blocks that used to be a single block to be treated as a single block again when applying rates
- change the way rates are charged where there are multiple houses on one block of land to reduce the rates payable for low-income home owners
- remove rates from marae land.
You’ll need to contact the local council responsible for your lands to find out their rating policy for Māori land.
Note: Māori freehold land can’t be included in a rates sale (but General land owned by Māori may be). The local council must instead go through the court to gain rates arrears.