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Heavy Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT) & IRS Form 2290 (Schedule 1)

Updated: Aug 7

Heavy Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT)


In simple terms, HVUT is a fee assessed annually by the IRS on heavy vehicles operating on public highways at registered gross weights equal to or exceeding 55,000 pounds. The gross taxable weight of a vehicle is determined by adding:

  • the actual unloaded weight of the vehicle fully equipped for service

  • the actual unloaded weight of any trailers or semitrailers fully equipped for service customarily used in combination with the vehicle, and

  • the weight of the maximum load customarily carried on the vehicle and on any trailers or semitrailers customarily used in combination with the vehicle

The table below breaks down the cost for each gross taxable weight category:

Gross Taxable Weight

Heavy Vehicle Use Tax Rates

Below 55,000 lbs

No tax

55,000 - 75,000 lbs

$100, plus $22 per 1,000 pounds over 55,000 lbs

Over 75,000 lbs

$550


Form IRS 2290

Form 2290

Form 2290 must be filed with the IRS every year to report the HVUT payment made for the taxable vehicles and also to report the information about tax suspended vehicles. There are two ways to file:

  1. Online - The quickest and easiest way is to use an e-file software to file the tax return form and pay what is owed online. You can find a list of Approved IRS Modernized e-file (MeF) Providers here: https://www.irs.gov/e-file-providers/2290-mef-providers Please note that these providers are not associated with or a part of the Internal Revenue Service.

  2. By Mail - Download and print Form 2290 directly from the IRS website: https://www.irs.gov/forms-pubs/about-form-2290 Mail form to the address shown under "Where to file next".


Schedule 1

Schedule 1

Schedule 1 is proof of filing and payment for the HVUT tax. Upon filing, you will automatically receive a digital copy of Schedule 1 with a "Received by the IRS" watermark stamped on it. You'll need to print this out as proof of payment to use when registering or renewing your apportioned plates for your vehicles.



What are the benefits of filing online versus by mail?


It's faster, easier and your information is saved for next time. By filing online, you also don't have to worry about your paperwork getting lost in the mail or dread those long processing times that have become even more delayed since Covid.


We use Express Truck Tax every year to file and pay HVUT online for our own trucking business, as well as our clients' businesses. Here's why:


Why do I need my EIN?

The IRS uses a combination of your EIN and your name as a unique identifier for the name control. On an e-filed return, if a taxpayer's unique ID doesn't match IRS records, it’s rejected.


What if my EIN is newly assigned?

You can file electronically four weeks from the date your EIN was assigned so that your name control is established in the IRS system. If you e-file it before then, your return might be rejected.


How do I know it's been filed?

Schedule 1 with a "Received by the IRS" watermark stamped on it is your proof of filing and payment to the IRS.


Due Date, Late Penalties, and Extensions

The tax period begins July 1 of the current year, and ends June 30th of the following year. The return must be filed and paid annually on August 31st.


The penalty for failing to file your IRS Form 2290 by the deadline is equal to 4.5% of the total tax amount due, and the penalty will increase monthly for up to five months.


To file an extension for filing Form 2290, you will need to write a letter to the IRS explaining the complete reason for the delay. The extension is not for more than 6 months, except for taxpayers abroad. In this case, the extension time is not for payment. If truckers desire to pay late, they need to request this separately.


All written requests should be mailed to:


Internal Revenue Service

7940 Kentucky Drive

Florence, KY 41042-2915



Can I file Form 2290 early and pay later?


Yes, we've partnered with Express Truck Tax so you can pre-file at any time and get your stamped Schedule 1 back immediately. If you file early, you need to be sure you pay the owed HVUT amount on or before August 31st.


Filing early also has several benefits:

  • Avoid the rush of peak season and get your Schedule 1 fast

  • More time to make corrections on your 2290 if any

  • Avoid the risk of being penalized for not having your Schedule 1

  • Get expert help through chat, email, or phone without the wait


How to file early:


If you've filed with Express Truck Tax before, and you're using the same truck as last time, this year's form can be auto-populated. You only need to review the return and file your 2290 in a single click. Your return will be transmitted once the IRS begins processing returns on July 1st.


If this is your first time, follow these four simple steps:



What groups and vehicles are exempt from HVUT?

There are a number of groups that receive exemptions from the HVUT, including:

  • The Federal Government

  • State or local governments, including the District of Columbia

  • The American Red Cross

  • Nonprofit volunteer fire departments, ambulance associations or rescue squads

  • Indian tribal governments (for vehicles used in essential tribal government functions)

  • Mass transportation authorities

There are also a number of vehicles exempted from the HVUT:

  • Commercial vehicles traveling fewer than 5,000 miles annually

  • Agriculture vehicles traveling fewer than 7,500 miles annually

  • Vehicle not considered highway motor vehicles — e.g., mobile machinery for non-transportation functions, vehicles specifically designed for off-highway transportation, and non-transportation trailers and semi-trailers

  • Qualified blood collector vehicles used by qualified blood collector organizations

Exempt carriers may be required to file tax forms with the IRS or notify the local department of motor vehicles (DMV) of the exempt status being claimed.


For more questions regarding Form 2290 or Schedule 1, please visit the IRS website directly: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/faqs-for-truckers-who-e-file



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Affiliate Disclosure:

This post contains affiliate links, which means we may receive a small commission if you make a purchase using these links. As an Express Truck Tax partner, we do earn from qualifying purchases. It's important you know that we only promote products and services that we absolutely love and trust and actually use in our own businesses. :)

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