The pre-filing season is in full-force, Trucking Nation! And with great e-filing comes great responsibility.
We’ve talked about the how-to’s and the benefits of e-filing and pre-filing, but what we haven’t talked about is what “to do” and “not to do” for the rest of the tax year.
A little bit of time spent preparing for your HVUT can save you the headache of filing an amendment or correcting a rejected return later. And here at ExpressTruckTax we want to make sure you have everything you need to e-file successfully!
Here are the Do’s and Don’ts of E-filing your 2290!
This year ExpressTruckTax is offering pre-filing for the 2015-16 tax year throughout June! When you pre-file with us, not only are you entered into our Swag Bag Give-Away, you’re also done with your HVUT for the year. Once the tax season begins on July 1 and the IRS begins accepting 2290’s, we’ll securely transmit your return for you so you don’t have to worry about it.
Don’t Wait until the Last Minute
With pre-filing available for all of our customers, why would you want to wait until the last minute to file your Form 2290? It’s just not a good idea! Especially since if your return is rejected and you waited until the last minute, you risk missing the deadline and you may have to pay penalties for not filing on time. So get it done early so you’ll still have time even if you make some mistakes.
Do Keep Records
You need to keep detailed records of your trip and mileage, because not only is it required, it could also help you if you need to file for a suspended vehicle. When you file for suspended vehicles, you need to be able to prove that you’re under the mileage limit to the IRS. So keep everything in order, because you never know when you’ll need it.
Don’t Put off Filling out Trip Sheets
Like I said, if you plan on filing for a suspended vehicle, you’ll need proof, and your trip sheets, in addition to being required, help to accomplish that. Not to mention that keeping good records is always smart when you’re filing any sort of taxes. So do them right away because if you wait until later, you risk forgetting the exact mileage and that can come back to bite you later.
Do Call if You Need Help
If you need any sort of help e-filing your HVUT, we have a dedicated support team to help you! We’re here to answer your questions and walk you through the process from start to finish to make sure it’s a stress-free experience for you.
- Pro-tip #1: Read Our How-To Guides
If you don’t have access to a phone, you can send us an email, find us on chat on our website, or you can read any number of how-to guide blogs we’ve written to help you! We have one for just about everything: Pre-filing, E-filing, Account Creation, and we even have a quick orientation video!
Don’t Try to Do It on Your Own
If you don’t know what you’re doing at any point in the e-filing process, then call us! Nobody wants to have their return rejected by the IRS. So if you have questions or there’s something you’re not sure about, let us walk you through it!
Do Get Your EIN early!
In order to file your Heavy Vehicle Use Taxes, you need to have an Employer Identification Number. If you don’t have an EIN, you need to get one right away because it takes some time before it becomes active and you are able to e-file or pre-file for the tax year.
Don’t File a Tax Return with a New EIN
It takes 10-15 business days for your EIN to become active. Any returns filed before the EIN has been activated will be rejected. So if you need to get an EIN, apply online directly with the IRS, and do it now so you’ll be able to e-file for the tax season!
Do Know Your VIN and Gross Vehicle Weight
You need to know both your VIN and GVW (Gross Vehicle Weight) to file your Form 2290 correctly. You can calculate your own Gross Vehicle Weight simply by adding together three numbers:
1. The unloaded (tare) weight of the truck
2. The unloaded weight of the trailer
3. The maximum weight of the cargo customarily carried by the truck/trailer.
Don’t Guesstimate Your Gross Vehicle Weight
When you don’t enter your correct GVW, you could wind up paying more than you need to for your HVUT. It will also spell trouble if you head to a weigh station and your Schedule 1 details don’t match the scales. So follow our simple 3-step calculation method listed above to accurately calculate your Gross Vehicle Weight.
Do Know the Types of Taxable Vehicles
- Regular: A regular heavy vehicle is any vehicle, weighing 55,000 lbs or more, that has driven over the 5,000 mile limit on public highways. For these vehicles, e-file your Form 2290 as normal and pay your heavy vehicle use tax.
- Suspended: Suspended vehicles are any heavy vehicle or agricultural vehicle that have been driven under their mileage limit for the tax year. For heavy vehicles, this limit is 5,000 and for agricultural vehicles this limit is 7,500 miles. Having a suspended vehicle means after you file your heavy vehicle use tax, you won’t owe any tax! Yay!
- Agriculture: Agricultural vehicles are any vehicles used for farming or agriculture. These vehicles can be driven 7,500 miles on public highways until they are no longer considered suspended, at which time, HVUT is due.
- Logging: Logging vehicles are any vehicles that are used to transport forest materials within or from a foresting site, or a vehicle that moves forested materials from one site to another. With logging vehicles, companies and drivers alike are eligible to pay less taxes for the tax year. So if you drive a logging truck, make sure you specify when you’re e-filing!
Don’t Miss out on Savings
If you drive a suspended or logging vehicle, you’re eligible for a tax discount! (See above) If you drive an agricultural vehicle you can log more mileage during the tax year before your vehicle is considered a “regular, non-suspended” vehicle.
Do E-file with Express Truck Tax
Great people, great price, great product! Not only are we IRS-certified and secure, ExpressTruckTax is also easy-to-use, and we have a great support team always standing by to help answer your tax questions.
If you find yourself with any questions or concerns throughout your e-filing or pre-filing process, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 704.234.6005 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org for 24 hour support in English or Spanish.
Happy pre-filing, Trucking Nation!
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