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Thursday, October 29, 2015

Don't Be Spooked, October 31st Is upon Us

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Hello there, Trucking Nation! With October 31st coming up, it can seem like a double whammy with Halloween and the IFTA 3rd quarter filing deadline all happening on the same day. We here at ExpressTruckTax can take some of that fear away from you with this friendly reminder to make sure you’ve got your IFTA return filed by the 31st. (Sorry, you’ll have to deal with the Halloween scariness on your own.)

ExpressTruckTax to the Rescue

If you’ve waited until the last minute to file, we’ve got you covered. All you’ve got to do is log in to ExpressIFTA using your ExpressTruckTax account login details. All your information will already be filled out for you. Just follow the simple directions, and you’re all set! Then you’ll be free to dedicate your time to pumpkins, costumes, parties, and all those tricks and treats.


Notification Services Feature

And speaking of reminders, we’ve also got you covered with our Notification Services. It provides you with alerts to let you know when your Form 2290 has been accepted by the IRS, and even the status of your payment. 

You can receive these alerts one of four ways:
  • Text- You’ll receive SMS alerts about the status of your return and payments.
  • Fax- We’ll send your stamped Schedule 1 to you, your carrier, or anyone else you would like.
  • Postal Mail- Your stamped Schedule 1 will be mailed to you. This can be especially useful when you’re on the road and don’t have access to a printer.
  • Our Chrome Browser Extension- You can receive notifications about the status of your return on your computer desktop by downloading our Chrome Browser Extension. It’s available from the Chrome Web Store.
No more wondering when your return is going to be received, no more holding your breath until your payment clears. No more waking up in the middle of the night with that nagging dread that you’ve left something undone. (We can’t help you if you hear something under your bed. Or in your closet. No, seriously. What was that?) 

And best of all, our users automatically get a free email notification as soon as their return is accepted by the IRS containing the stamped Schedule 1.


We’re Here for You

If you have any questions or need any help with any aspect of ExpressTruckTax, (you’ll have to get your mom or dad to help you with the scary stuff) we’re available over the phone at 704.234.6005 and through web chat. Our U.S.-based support team is also available via email any day at support@expresstrucktax.com. We always love to get your comments, especially on Facebook and Twitter. And as always, don’t forget to let your friends and family know about us. Your word of mouth is more valuable than any advertising.

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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

#WellnessWednesday: Tips to Eliminate Driver Fatigue

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Driver fatigue is a leading cause of deadly trucking accidents each year. There are a number of factors that can lead to driver fatigue, including inadequate sleep, too many hours on the road, and physical factors. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has enacted safety guidelines to prevent driver fatigue and thus keep all our truckers safer. We here at ExpressTruckTax are committed to helping keep you safe and healthy, Trucking Nation. So here are some tips for your #WellnessWednesday on how to prevent fatigue from occurring in the first place.


Eating Healthy: Eating healthy food daily will prevent blood sugar problems and other factors that can lead to fatigue, but that doesn’t mean you have to munch on spinach all day long. Let’s not forget that dark chocolate is a health food too, and a few squares can help you feel more alert and give you some much needed iron and minerals. It is, after all, National Chocolate Day today, so kick off your healthy habits with a few squares of rich chocolatey goodness!

Adequate Sleep: This is pretty straightforward, but often ignored. Not only does getting enough sleep at night help combat fatigue during the day, but naps are also an excellent tool in fighting fatigue.

Regular Exercise: Sometimes it seems counterintuitive, but working out can actually give you more energy. And exercise can help alleviate stress, which often is a cause of fatigue. Just 15 minutes a day of vigorous exercise will boost not only your energy level, but your mood as well.

Time Management: Trying to do too much in too little time, rushing to make deadlines, running behind, all these can cause fatigue. Effective time management helps keep fatigue to a minimum.

Relaxation: Down time is not wasted time. We all need to relax and engage in positive, interesting activities in our free time in order to alleviate emotional stress and ease tension.

Minimize or Eliminate Use of Caffeine: Caffeine while having a seemingly positive effect initially, often leads to negative or depressed emotional states eventually. It also can all interfere with sleep, and we’ve already determined how important sleep is in avoiding fatigue.


Ultimately, minimizing fatigue is just a matter of living a healthy lifestyle. Often, we don’t notice the things we’re doing (or not doing) that lead to fatigue until it’s too late and we’re already exhausted. Being proactive in making healthy choices daily is perhaps the best way to keep fatigue at bay.

ExpressTruckTax can also help you avoid fatigue by taking care of your tax-related tasks that you’d rather not do yourself. Just a few short minutes of entering your information and you’re done! No hassle, no fuss.

You can always share with us your ideas on Facebook or Twitter. Our world-class support team is located in Rock Hill, SC and is ready to take your calls from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET Monday through Friday. We’re also available via chat during those same hours. Just click on the “Chat With Us” button at the top of the screen on our homepage. Finally, you can reach us any day by email at support@expresstrucktax.com.

And don’t forget to refer us to your friends and family. Why keep such a good thing to yourselves? Just think how much better the Trucking Nation could be if everyone followed these tips. Word of mouth is our best advertising.

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Friday, October 23, 2015

Who's Eligible for an HVUT Refund?

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Welcome back, Trucking Nation! Let’s talk about what everybody likes about filing taxes: getting a refund! We all enjoy getting paid. Remember when you filed your Form 2290 with the IRS and paid your HVUT? Well, you may be eligible for a refund under certain circumstances. Let’s look at how to know if you’re eligible.

Refund Eligibility


There are a few cases where you will be eligible for a refund of your HVUT tax:
  • A stolen, destroyed, or sold vehicle
  • A vehicle you drove less than the mileage limit (5,000 miles or 7,500 miles for agricultural vehicles)
  • Overpayment on Form 2290

You will not be eligible for a refund if:
  • You sometimes drive at a lower Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) than you reported
  • You used your vehicle only part of the year but still exceeded the mileage limit.

So you’ve determined that you qualify for an HVUT refund. What do you have to do to get it? Glad you asked! With ExpressTruckTax, it’s a very simple process.


How to e-file an 8849



If you filed your Form 2290 with ExpressTruckTax, Form 8849 will be generated automatically if you’re filing for a credit vehicle and the system determines the credit is greater than the tax amount owed on the return.

When your vehicle is stolen, destroyed, or sold, or you paid taxes on a vehicle traveling under the mileage limit for the year, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  • Log in to your ExpressTruckTax account.
  • Click on “Start a New Return” and then “Start” under “Form 8849 Schedule 6.”
  • For any trucks stolen, destroyed, or sold during the past tax year, enter the VIN, GVW, the first month it was used, and the date each vehicle was sold, lost, or destroyed.
  • If you have any trucks that qualify for a low mileage credit, enter the VIN, GVW, and the first month used for each vehicle.
  • Now you can enter your overpayment credits. Just type in the date the tax was overpaid, the VIN, the amount of the overpayment, and a short explanation for the IRS.
  • Then just review your information, and we’ll estimate the amount of your refund.

That’s it! It usually takes 4-6 weeks for the IRS to mail your refund check. You’re all set!

We here at ExpressTruckTax are always ready to help with any questions you may have about any aspect of using ExpressTruckTax. Our dedicated support team is located in Rock Hill, SC, and available via phone or web chat Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 704.234.6005. You can also reach us at any time by email at support@expresstrucktax.com. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!





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Monday, October 19, 2015

Leonard's Express Joins the Fight Against Breast Cancer

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Happy Monday, Trucking Nation! As you know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Last Monday, we here at ExpressTruckTax told you about United Materials, a concrete company in North Tonawanda, NY, that has painted one of its concrete trucks pink in order to raise awareness for breast cancer research. They also raised money towards helping survivors of breast cancer and finding a cure for the deadly illness.

The Power of The Trucking Nation

Proudly, United Materials is by no means the only member of the Trucking Nation to dedicate at least one truck to the fight against breast cancer. Leonard’s Express, a transportation provider in Farmington, NY, has adorned not one but three of its rigs with pinks ribbons, the universal symbol for breast cancer awareness. Leonard’s Express has also pledged to donate one penny for each mile these trucks drive, and all three trucks will average at least 100,000 plus miles each year.

Leonard’s Express has partnered with the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester to educate, advocate, and help those affected by breast cancer in Western and Central New York State. President of Leonard’s Express, Ken Johnson, explains his company’s decision to partner with the coalition: “Having witnessed the great work that the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester does it was an easy decision to support this fine organization, while at the same time raising awareness of the terrible disease that breast cancer is.”

Fighting for a Cure

1 in 8 women are diagnosed with breast cancer during their lives.And while it is the second leading cause of death among women, it also affects men. Finding a cure for this terrible disease is a huge priority here at ExpressTruckTax. We are proud to be able to feature stories about you members of the Trucking Nation who have gone all in to support efforts in fighting breast cancer. Seeing your pink rigs and trucks decorated with pink Breast Cancer Awareness ribbons on the road does our hearts good. It reaffirms what we already know: The Trucking Nation is the best!


Use #TruckingForACure to let us know about your efforts to fight breast cancer!



ExpressTruckTax is your one-stop location for all your trucking tax needs. You can e-file IRS Form 2290, file your IFTA return, and much more all for one low price. Our world-class support team located in Rock Hill, SC, is available to answer all your questions and concerns from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through Friday. You can reach us on the phone during these hours at 704.234.6005, and chat with us on our website during these times as well. And remember, you can also email us seven days a week at support@expresstrucktax.com.

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Thursday, October 15, 2015

Efiling for Farmers: Get Your Schedule 1 Today

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For those of you members of the Trucking Nation who are involved in agriculture, you know that in many regions of the U.S. right now, harvesting is well under way. We all count on you to get our food and goods to the market, so let’s see what you need to do to ensure your farm trucks stay on the road.

HVUT for Farmers

Even though trucks used for agriculture usually don’t have to pay HVUT, you are still required by the IRS to file a Form 2290 for all trucks with a gross weight of 55,000 pounds or greater that operate on public roads. Most farm trucks are known as suspended vehicles and are classified as such if driven less than 7,500 miles each year. The only agricultural trucks that have to pay HVUT are those that put in 7,500 or more miles each year.

What Do I Need to Do?

ExpressTruckTax is the easiest way to file your yearly Form 2290. When filling out the 2290, you’ll just need to list your truck details, such as the VIN and Gross Vehicle Weight, and it will be classed as Category W (if it’s under the 7,500 miles limit). Once you file your 2290 through ExpressTruckTax, you’ll receive a stamped Schedule 1 with a watermark verifying you’ve filed a 2290 for the year. You’ll need this when registering or renewing your license plates or tags for your vehicle. That way the DMV knows you’re current with the IRS, and they won’t issue your plates without it.

Filing Form 2290 from the Farm

Here are the quick, easy steps to filing your 2290 and getting your all-important stamped Schedule 1:

  • First, you’ll need to create an account. If you’re already registered with us, just log in to your existing account. If not, just fill out a few simple fields and you’re ready to go!
  • Second, enter the details about your vehicle(s). This is the important part for agricultural vehicles. If your mileage during the tax period on a truck is less than 7,500 miles, leave the field for Taxable Vehicles blank. You’ll only need to fill in this field for any trucks that have put in 7,500 or more miles during the tax year on public highways. When you get to the Suspended Vehicle screen, then you can enter all the information for your vehicle or vehicles that are suspended.
  • Third, enter your payment information. Then review all your information, transmit your return to the IRS, and you can receive your stamped Schedule 1 within a few minutes.

That’s all there is to it! You’re ready to register your trucks, and to make the trek from farm to market.

Questions or Concerns from the Farm?

Our world-class, locally-based support team is always available Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the phone at 704.234.6005 to help you with any questions you may have. You can also email us anytime at support@expresstrucktax.com. And as always, please remember to recommend us to your family and friends. We need your support as well and always appreciate your referrals!



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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

#WellnessWednesday: Managing Stress on the Road

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Driving a truck can be among the most stressful jobs out there. Being responsible for up to 80,000 pounds of metal moving at speeds of 70 MPH or above places severe demands on your brain for attention, and produces rigorous tension in your body. Then there are other drivers, deadlines, (including tax-filing deadlines) adverse weather conditions, and the grueling number of hours on the road. It’s no wonder you truckers are constantly feeling enormous amounts of pressure and stress!

But did you know that stress actually triggers a number of health problems? Problems such as headaches, upset stomach, heartburn, high blood pressure, chest pains, and difficulty sleeping can all come from stress. Untreated stress can also contribute to diabetes, heart problems, skin conditions, asthma, arthritis, depression and anxiety. And believe it or not, 75 to 90 percent of all visits to the doctor are for stress-related illnesses.

Since stress is so prevalent in the trucking industry, and its effects so serious, one of the best things you can do for yourself as a trucker is to learn techniques for dealing with stress. Here are some great methods you can use to ease your stress and make each day on the road more peaceful.

  • Exercise. This is perhaps the most effective method for dealing with stress. The movement of exercise can release the pent-up energy that stress can cause. It may be difficult to find the time and a place to exercise while on the road, but even a 15 or 20 minute walk will do wonders towards relieving your driving stress.

  • Healthy Diet. Another difficult thing to manage while driving long distances is your diet. There aren’t a host of opportunities for healthy eating at most truck stops, but a healthy diet is a crucial factor in controlling your stress level. It boosts your immune system, making you more resistant to the effects of stress. Eating a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables and drinking plenty of water are two important ways to maintain a healthy diet.

  • Sleep. Getting adequate, restful sleep can do wonders for your stress level. If you’re getting enough exercise, you’re probably already sleeping well. Making sure you get plenty of restorative sleep keeps your mind in optimal condition, and will leave you better equipped to deal with whatever stress you may encounter during the day, and eliminate the unneeded stress that comes from not being well rested.

Other methods of managing stress include meditation, breathing techniques, and using smart strategies to eliminate any unneeded stress from your daily routine and activities.

We don’t have to tell you how stressful it is out there for you, Trucking Nation. But we can help you keep your unnecessary tension to a minimum, and using the above strategies will help you deal with the unavoidable pressures of the road.

As always, we’re here to answer any questions you may have about using ExpressTruckTax. You can call us Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 704.234.6005, and email us any time at support@expresstrucktax.com. Don’t forget to like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and to let your family and friends know about ExpressTruckTax and the helpful tips you get from this blog!

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Monday, October 12, 2015

ExpressTruckTax is #TruckingForACure

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October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, as most of you know. Since 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lives, there are few of us who aren’t touched and affected by this terrible disease.

Personally, I lost a high school friend to breast cancer this October 4th. Most of us here at ExpressTruckTax have been directly affected by losses from breast cancer, and it’s no wonder because breast cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death among women. Luckily, awareness and support have been building in recent years to find a cure.

We here at ExpressTruckTax are committed to helping find a cure for breast cancer. Although more and more activities and efforts on the part of finding a cure are taking place around the calendar year, October is the time to focus intensely on raising awareness, as well as funds, towards finding that cure.

United Materials, a concrete company in North Tonawanda, New York, is one member of the Trucking Nation who has stepped up and is making a difference in the fight. Not only has the company committed to raise money to fund research and help those affected, it’s also increased awareness by getting its pink concrete truck out on the road for everyone to see. Remember, pink is the adopted color for breast cancer awareness. Since the pink ribbon is the easily recognizable symbol of the fight for a cure, the pink United Materials concrete truck has a prominent pink ribbon on its side.

With the slogan “Our Commitment to the Cure is Concrete,” United Materials demonstrates its dedication to help find a cure and aid those families affected by breast cancer. The Western New York concrete company states that its pink concrete truck’s purpose is “to honor all survivors of breast cancer throughout the Niagara Region.”

Over 500 man hours were donated last year by United Materials’ more than 100 employees towards fundraising and awareness events in Western New York. Their pink concrete truck and employees have shown up to throw support behind their “Commitment to the Cure.”

This pink truck is just one example of how the hard-working members of the Trucking Nation can and are making a difference. There are countless pink trucks out on the roads, and their numbers are increasing every day. ExpressTruckTax is grateful for all your contributions and efforts to raise awareness of the need to find a cure for breast cancer. Keep it up, Trucking Nation, by joining the ExpressTruckTax team in raising awareness via social media!

Use #TruckingForACure and let us know your reason

for joining the fight against breast cancer!


As always, we’re here to help you and answer any questions you may have about ExpressTruckTax. You can call us at 704.234.6005 or email us any time at support@expresstrucktax.com.

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Thursday, October 8, 2015

The ExpressTruckTax Support Team

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When you collaborate and e-file with ExpressTruckTax, you will not only receive great customer service, but you will also feel like you truly matter. Based out of Rock Hill, SC, each of our team members gladly and willingly stick to the product’s mission, which is answering all questions thoroughly, quickly, and effectively while guiding clients through the e-filing process.

“We're really good at what we do, and what we do is make taxes easier for you.”


Assistance


When you need assistance with e-filing, ExpressTruckTax has got you covered. We’re an IRS authorized e-file provider, which means we work closely with the IRS to provide an accurate, safe, and secure process that will save you time and money. And because our team strives to provide the most comprehensive program out there, you’ll find support text that guides you through each step of e-filing within the ExpressTruckTax program. Additionally, we have help videos if you’d like to see exactly how something is done.

Experience


Between a hard-working product manager, product coordinator, digital content manager, digital copy editor, and several client relationship specialists, our ExpressTruckTax support team is the most experienced in the industry. Since we’ve been helping clients e-file for years, we’re sure to know the ins and outs of the filing process better than anyone else.

Quality


It’s true that ExpressTruckTax isn’t the only product providing the specific service of e-filing, but we are the only ones doing it at a high level of quality. Who doesn’t love a challenge, though? Unlike the competitors out there, ExpressTruckTax believes that it’s possible to create and maintain a world-class product at a local level with the combination of professionalism, tax savviness, and value-based pricing.

If you’d like to learn more about the ExpressTruckTax team, click here!

As always, don’t hesitate to contact the team members! You can call us at 704.234.6005 or email us at support@expresstrucktax.com.


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Wednesday, October 7, 2015

#WellnessWednesday: Vaccines

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Staying in good condition is a priority for all of us, which is why it’s important to protect and maintain your health by keeping up-to-date on vaccines. They are recommended for all adults, including truck drivers, to help prevent getting diseases. Even if you were vaccinated when you were younger, getting vaccinated can greatly stimulate your immune system and prepare you for the long haul!

Let’s take a look at some vaccines that can help adults like yourself stay healthy while on the road:


  • Flu (Influenza) Vaccine
  • TD (Tetanus and Diphtheria) Vaccine
  • Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis) Vaccine
  • Pneumococcal Vaccine
  • Meningococcal Vaccine
  • Hepatitis A Vaccine
  • Hepatitis B Vaccine
  • Chickenpox (Varicella) Vaccine
  • Shingles (Zoster) Vaccine

For instance, if you happen to have asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or other conditions that may affect your lungs, then the flu and pneumococcal vaccines are for you. As an adult, the time is now to get a fresh start and keep tabs on your immunization history.

Before getting any shots, make sure the vaccine is right for you. Speak with your doctor or visit this helpful site with more information:

http://www.adultvaccination.org/

Do you have some recommendations on keeping up with vaccines? Or maybe you would like to share some highlights from your own wellness journey. Either way, drop us a line on Facebook or Twitter!

You can also call us at 704.234.6005 or email us at support@expresstrucktax.com if you have any questions. We love hearing from you, Trucking Nation!

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Tuesday, October 6, 2015

#TruckTechTuesday: Keep It Updated

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Happy #TruckTechTuesday! Here at ExpressTruckTax, we’re all about keeping up with the latest technology, which means making sure our browsers and apps are always up-to-date. Why, you ask? Well, regular updates provide significant benefits, such as better speed, security, and support than older versions. If you don't take the chance to update your browser, you can be left in the dark and miss new features that can improve your overall experience on the web—no, thank you!

Let’s take a look at some benefits of an updated browser:


Speed

You probably don’t need me to tell you that updating your browser can help websites and apps load and run faster. It’s true that every new update makes your browser faster than the last.

Security

When it comes to your personal information, such as identity and credit card numbers, you’re the safest when you have your browser updated to the latest version. That’s because it includes new and improved security protection.

Safety

Keeping your browser updated can also reduce the risk of getting a virus on your computer. To minimize the risk of infection and attack, it's important to check for updates every month or so.

Sight

If you maintain an older browser that does not support the latest versions of HTML or CSS, you won’t be able to see the full view of the sites you visit.

As you can notice, keeping your browser updated is important for several reasons, especially to ensure that your web pages load properly. ExpressTruckTax also recommends that you update any extensions, plug-ins, or add-ons.

If there is anything #TruckTech related that you wish to see featured here, drop us a line on our Facebook or Twitter! And as always, don’t hesitate to contact us if you need assistance or have any questions. ExpressTruckTax offers year-round support so you can get the help you deserve. You can email us at support@expresstrucktax.com or call us at 704.234.6005.


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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Signing Form 8453-EX Just Got a Little Easier

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Hello, Trucking Nation! Per usual, ExpressTruckTax is here to help make the lives of our loyal and hard-working customers a little easier. For today’s topic, we want to focus on our trusty and fast e-sign feature, which eliminates long waits and any frustration.

To file the Excise Tax Declaration, or Form 8453-EX, the IRS requires both the taxpayer and tax practitioner to sign. When e-filing with ExpressTruckTax, all you need to do is click the link to email the electronic form to your client, and after they receive it, he/she can follow detailed instructions on how to complete the process on their end.

Once you get to the 8453-EX page, follow the steps below:


  • Click on "Step 2: Send the form to your client by one of the following means." (See image.)



  • Once opened, click "Send for E-Sign" to email a link to our secure e-sign page. Your client will need to click the link, enter their EIN to access the form, and then follow the steps to finish the process. 
  • You will receive notification once your client has signed, and then it’s your turn. Just log back into your account, continue to the 8453-EX page, and click on the link to apply your signature. From there, you can click “Next” to move on to the final page and transmit the return to the IRS.

What Are The Benefits of the E-Sign Feature?


  • It's safe and secure
  • Clients can e-sign in seconds
  • No more waits for faxes
  • Works from any device 

We hope these instructions are beneficial to you, but if you need further assistance, don’t hesitate to contact us! You can call our support team at 704.234.6005 or email us at support@expresstrucktax.com.

Remember, Trucking Nation, we’re here for you!

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ExpressTruckTax Blog

E-file your HVUT Form 2290 with ExpressTruckTax.