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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Don't Let IFTA Sneak Up On You


Doesn’t it seem like you just did your IFTA report yesterday? Well, oh how the time flies because the next IFTA deadline is right around the corner! Your first quarter IFTA report is due by April 30th,  which is a Sunday, so the deadline actually falls on Monday, May 1st. That day will be here before you know it, so don’t let it sneak up on you. It’s never too early to start working on your report. Use ExpressTruckTax to calculate your IFTA totals and learn all about IFTA here.

All About IFTA


IFTA or the International Fuel Tax Agreement is an agreement that simplifies the reporting of fuel in the lower 48 states. The purpose of IFTA reports are to simplify the reporting of fuel use by motor carriers that operate in more than one jurisdiction so states can equally distribute per jurisdiction.

The taxes are then used to repair the public highways that truckers frequent, by repaving roads and reinforcing bridges the routes become safer and smoother. Also, better roads mean less wear and tear on your vehicle.

Now only qualify vehicles that travel between multiple jurisdictions are subject to IFTA. You must have your IFTA license and two IFTA decals on your vehicle that are provided by their base jurisdiction.

Your base jurisdiction is where your qualified vehicles are based for registration. It’s where operational control and operational records of the licensee's qualified motor vehicles are maintained and in the case of an audit can be made available. It’s also where some mileage is gained by qualified motor vehicles traveling through that jurisdiction within the fleet.

If you don’t live in a base jurisdiction you can apply for an IFTA license from any of the jurisdictions you regularly travel in.

Qualifying vehicles are ones that are motor vehicles that are used, designed, or maintained for the transportation of persons or property having two axles and a gross vehicle weight exceeding 26,000 pounds, two axles and a registered weight exceeding 26,000 pounds, three or more axles regardless of weight, and a combination weight exceeding 26,000 pounds.

You need to provide the following information to correctly complete your IFTA return:

- Total miles, both taxable and nontaxable, traveled by each of the licensee’s qualified motor vehicles for all jurisdictions, including trip permit miles. This includes both IFTA and non-IFTA jurisdictions.
- Total gallons of fuel consumed by the qualified motor vehicles, both taxable and nontaxable per jurisdiction, IFTA and non-IFTA.
- The total amount of tax-paid gallons of fuel purchased in each jurisdiction.
- The current tax rate per jurisdiction.

If you don’t travel outside of your base jurisdiction a lot you don’t have to necessarily apply for an IFTA license. You can apply for a local trip permit with the local DMV of the jurisdiction you’ll be traveling in.

It’s important to have your IFTA license with you and permits properly display under your truck door windows at all time are you could be subject to getting a citation and having to buy a temporary permit.

Failure to file your IFTA reports by the deadline or to file at all will result in hefty penalties. You’ll be fined $50 or 10% of the delinquent taxes, whichever is greater. On top of that, base jurisdictions reserve the right to impose additional penalties based on the laws of the jurisdiction.

Also, base jurisdictions will assess interest on all of the unpaid taxes due for each jurisdiction except for the taxes collected directly by other jurisdictions. For US jurisdictions interest will build up at a rate of 1% per month. Interest will build at a rate equal to the Canadian Federal Treasury Bill rate, plus 2% for Canadian jurisdictions, plus the rate is adjusted every quarter.

Remember you have to complete your IFTA report 4 times a year. The quarterly IFTA deadlines are:

1st Quarter: January 1st - March 31st. Due date: April 30th.

2nd Quarter: April 1st - June 30th. Due date: July 31st.

3rd Quarter: July 1st - September 30th. Due Date: October 31st.

4th Quarter: October 1st - December 31st. Due Date: January 31st.

Note: If the deadline falls on a weekend or federal holiday then the deadline is moved to the next business day.

ExpressTruckTax is Here To Help

Don’t let IFTA stress you out. Head to ExpressTruckTax.com to quickly and easily calculate your IFTA totals with their quick entry odometer entry screen, fuel tax calculator, and more. Our dedicated support team is full of IFTA experts who are ready to help. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any truck tax questions that you may have via live chat, phone, or email.

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