Truck Drivers and Their Tax Responsibilities

Truck Drivers are a unique breed: traveling alone for hundreds of miles, sometimes in the worst weather imaginable. It's certainly not for everyone, but those who find their place behind the wheel are often rewarded with considerable success. Like many specialized professions, though, truck drivers are subject to a unique set of tax responsibilities. Failure to fulfill their duties to the government can result in serious complications down the road.

There are general guidelines any prospective driver should review before claiming the cab as their livelihood. Many of the tax responsibilities specific to this line of work will no doubt be foreign to the novice, and require a certain amount of discipline in practice. With a little effort and attention to detail, though, there's no reason the rules of the road won't become second nature.

Basic Filing Requirements

Trucker drivers are responsible for paying the Heavy Highway Vehicle Use Tax, which applies to any driver who has a registered vehicle which weighs more than 55,000 pounds. Form 2290 is required to file this tax and the IRS encourages individuals to do so electronically. If the vehicle in question is used for less than 5000 miles, drivers are required to file but are not liable to pay. Also, you'll need your assigned Employer Identification Number (EIN) to e-file. It's important that this information is provided correctly, to avoid a filing rejection.

Sending and Correcting Returns

When you file your return electronically, you'll receive email verification from the IRS. If you need to make a correction to your return after you submit it, there are restrictions for doing so online. Should you need to amend information regarding weight, mileage or your VIN, you may do so electronically. Any other changes must be made on the paper version of Form 2290 and mailed to the address provided on that document.

Special Exceptions

There are several exceptions to consider when filing your taxes, which may result in you receiving a credit. If, for instance, your vehicle was destroyed, stolen or sold, you can claim a credit during or following the tax period. Also, if you've paid the tax on your vehicle but then discover that you drove it less than 5000 miles, you can claim a credit for the next tax year. It's important to keep track of any corresponding documentation for these claims, in case you're asked to verify info later on.

Problems and Solutions

If you fail to file or pay on time, you may wind up with penalties and interest on top of the original debt amount. Continued failure to address your taxes can result in collection efforts that may interfere with your business. It may be wise to consult with a licensed tax professional, who can determine a swift resolution and keep you where you need to be: on the road.

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