International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA)

Summary

The International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) is a motor fuel accounting process now used by all 50 states whereby interstate operators pay motor fuel taxes on their qualified vehicles to the state where the business is located. IFTA is an agreement among states and Canadian Provinces to simplify the reporting of fuel taxes.

All distances traveled in every state are reported on a quarterly basis. All fuel purchases are itemized by state. A quarterly report is generated that indicates tax or credit due based on the published tax rates for each state. Quarterly reports are only filed with your base state of operation. 

What Vehicles Require IFTA Tags?

The following vehicles that operate interstate require IFTA tags:

  • Has a Gross Vehicle Weight in excess of 26,000 pounds
  • Has three or more axles on the power unit regardless of weight
  • Is used in a combination and the combination weight exceeds 26,000 pounds 

How Do You Register for IFTA?

Any motor carrier of qualified vehicles submits an application to its base state. Upon registration, a motor carrier is issued an IFTA license for each qualified motor vehicle which operates in other states. There is an annual renewal based on the calendar year. Each qualified vehicle licensed is issued two decals. One decal is placed on the exterior of the driver's side of the vehicle, and the other decal is placed on the passenger side of the vehicle. This IFTA license or photocopy of the license for that vehicle must remain in the cab of the vehicle throughout the year.

What Information is Required to File a Report?

  • Total miles traveled in each state
  • Total gallons of fuel purchased in each state

How Is Mileage Determined?

A mileage record (trip report) must be maintained for every unit. The trip report must contain the following information:

  • Date of trip
  • Trip origin and destination
  • Routes of travel
  • Beginning and ending odometer reading
  • Total trip miles
  • Mileage by jurisdiction
  • Vehicle unit number
  • Licensee name 

In addition, records must be kept of all fuel purchases. They must include:

  • Date of purchase
  • Name and address of seller
  • Number of gallons purchased
  • Type of fuel purchased
  • Price per gallon
  • Unit number or license plate number
  • Purchaser's signature

Acceptable fuel receipts include credit card receipts or automated vendor generated invoices.

Quarterly Reports

All IFTA licensees must file quarterly reports. The tax due or refund amount is calculated for each member jurisdiction on the report. If there is tax due, a check is submitted. If there is a refund due, the base state will send a refund.

An IFTA tax report must be filed every quarter. If the vehicle does not operate during the quarter or the vehicle does not leave the base state, a report MUST still be filed. IFTA will issue a late fee for failure to file the report on time.

Our IFTA Reporting Service

Many companies without the time, expertise or resources to accurately file an IFTA return rely on The Transportation Advisor for timely reporting. For each unit, your driver completes a daily or weekly trip report. On a weekly or monthly basis these trip reports are faxed or emailed to The Transportation Advisor for each vehicle. Copies of fuel receipts are also submitted for proper credit. All information is imported into our nationally recognized IFTA software program where the information is stored.

At the end of each quarter, we total the fuel use per each jurisdiction, the taxable and non-taxable miles, and prepare the report. If there is no tax due or a refund, we send the report directly to the jurisdiction. If a tax is due, we will contact you with the amount and charge the dues to your credit card along with our reporting fees. We will then issue a check to your base state along with your quarterly report. A copy of the report will be sent to you.

What Does IFTA Reporting Cost?

We process the monthly information we receive, and prepare the report in a timely and accurate manner. We charge a one time set-up fee of $49.00 and then a monthly fee of $29.00 per unit. The quarterly invoice is generated at the same time as the IFTA report.

Four states require Highway Use or Weight Distance Reports to be filed in addition to the quarterly IFTA report. State reports to KY, NY and NM are an additional $20.00 per report filed. Oregon requires a monthly report. The charge for that report is $10.00.

How Do We Enroll?

The process begins by completing an IFTA enrollment packet and signing and having notarized a power of attorney form which allows us to prepare the report in your name, and to submit the reports to the appropriate jurisdiction. Then you provide us with accurate trip sheets and legible fuel receipts. We do the rest.

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