Understand the significance an HVUT Form 2290 holds in the current economy. Find out if your business is required to report with Form 2290.
Businesses in the transportation industry operate with heavy vehicles. Heavy vehicles are more likely to wear and tear the national highways. This is why businesses that operate with vehicles weighing equal to or more than 50,000 pounds (gross) are required to communicate to the IRS that they are law-abiding businesses operating within the regulations levied by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Department of Transportation.
By complying with the rules and paying taxes on time, businesses are also communicating to the IRS that they are working towards building the economy.
But for the context of our blog, let’s talk about businesses and owner-operators in the trucking industry. We’ll address questions along the lines of “How are trucking businesses affected? What would happen if the businesses did not comply with the rules?”
What Is Form 2290?
Form 2290 is an informational return that exclusively deals with Highway Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT). For starters, trucking businesses use highways for commercial and non-commercial purposes, for which they are liable to pay the tax.
HVUT Form 2290 is one such return that allows these businesses to communicate to the IRS about their vehicles, miles utilized, and other such vital information, on which they are taxed. This means that businesses are liable to pay the taxes for utilizing the highways for heavy-duty.
Businesses submit Form 2290 in electronic or paper filing methods to report to the IRS. On the off-chance of businesses not complying with these rules, the IRS would penalize the businesses heavily and the businesses may be taken “off the road” (literally).
Origin Of Form 2290
According to this document published on the Federal Register, HVUT was established by Congress per the Surface Transportation Assistance Act of 1982.
Further research also suggests that this law was brought in place to impose a higher tax on vehicles and owner-operators that were utilizing the national highways but were causing double the damage due to the heavyweight of the vehicle.
This resulted in expending to recover the highways from the damage caused by heavy vehicles.
To put it simply, businesses were (and still are) taxed more for their share of the utilization of the highways, and the taxes are collected to recover the damage caused to the highways and develop the federal national highway infrastructure.
Form 2290 & Significance In HVUT Compliance
The Office of Highway Policy Information reports that HVUT played a major role in funding U.S transportation. In 2019 alone, the HVUT helped generate more than 1.285 Billion in Federal Highway Trust Fund (HTF) revenue.
This means that trucking businesses are contributing towards the federal highways infrastructure by filing their 2290 HVUT returns on time and paying the taxes appropriately.
In 1985, states were required to verify proof of payment as a condition of registering heavy trucks subject to the HVUT. This resulted in a 41% surge of revenue in 1986, where the HVUT revenues grew by a whopping $154 million.
This shows that the HVUT was a smart move made by the Congress and it’s helping to develop the highway infrastructure in the country, even to this day.
Form 2290 is a unique tax form, which requires businesses to report information about the business, such as the taxable gross weight of the vehicle, vehicle identification number, details about the previously suspended vehicles, and other essential information about the vehicles owned by the business or the owner-operator.
Businesses That Must Report With Form 2290
HVUT compliance is a mandatory practice for profit-making and non-profit organizations alike. However, there are a few individuals and organizations that are exempt from filing and paying HVUT as follows.
- The Federal Government
- The District of Columbia
- A state or local government
- The American National Red Cross
- A nonprofit volunteer
- Fire department
- Ambulance association
- Rescue squad
- An Indian Tribal Government but only if the vehicle’s use involves the exercise of an essential tribal government function
- A mass transportation authority created under a statute that gives it certain powers normally exercised by the state
- Qualified blood collection vehicles used by qualified blood collection organizations
The IRS encourages businesses to maintain tax discipline by furnishing 2290 forms for each period in which the vehicle was used. If the mileage limit exceeds, the businesses have to report the same in the 2290 form.
Similarly, if the weight of the vehicle increases or decreases during a period, it must be reported to categorize their vehicle according to its revised weight.
Using EZ2290 To E-File Form 2290
EZ2290 is a powerful and secure e-filing platform specializing in HVUT compliance. Thousands of businesses use EZ2290 to e-file form 2290 for each filing period. You can file for the current as well as previous filing periods with EZ2290.
We recommend having all the required vehicle and business information ready with you before you get started with the e-filing process. This saves you time and effort.
EZ2290 enables businesses to e-file with Form 2290 in 3 easy steps.
Step 1: Create your free EZ2290 account here or log into your account.
Step 2: Complete your 2290 form.
Step 3: Submit your form 2290 to the IRS.
You will receive the IRS-Stamped Schedule-1 a few minutes after successfully submitting the forms to the IRS.
Paying your taxes may seem a bit painful because you’re paying the money for a cause of which you’re not aware. But now you are aware of the cause and you understand that the federal highway infrastructure is dependent on every tax dollar that comes out of your pocket.
You must take pride in the fact that you’re a law-abiding citizen and business when you report accurately and file your returns on time. You’re helping build the economy by doing your bit and that’s enough.
In the modern lingo; taxes are the contribution made by a business or an individual for a local or federal cause.
Having said that, taxes are taxes.
Maintaining discipline in this sphere is extremely important because returns that are not filed and taxes not paid have serious repercussions.