A Step-by-Step Guide on Filing HVUT Tax Returns Online

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What is HVUT?

HVUT, the Federal Heavy Vehicle Use Tax, is an annual fee assessed on heavy vehicles that operate on public highways at registered gross weights equal to or exceeding 55,000 pounds. One can determine the gross taxable vehicle weight by adding together,

  • 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

If the gross taxable weight is from 55,000 to 75,000 pounds, the HVUT is $100, plus $22 per 1,000 pounds over 55,000 pounds. For over 75,000-pound vehicles, the maximum HVUT is $550 per year. The table below illustrates these categories.

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

There are a number of groups and vehicles that receive exemptions from the HVUT which is discussed under Suspended Vehicles section. The Heavy Vehicle Use Tax is a significant source of transportation funding in the U.S. that helps develop good highway infrastructure. Check out HVUT revenue for more information on how much revenue is raised each year using HVUT.

Who should pay the HVUT?

For the tax period beginning on July 1 every year and ending by June 30 the next year, if a taxable highway motor vehicle is registered, or required to be registered in your name under state, District of Columbia, Canadian, or Mexican law at the time of its first use during the period and the vehicle has a taxable gross weight of 55,000 pounds or more, you are required to figure and pay the Heavy Vehicle Use Tax to the IRS. ‘You’ may refer to an individual, limited liability company (LLC), corporation, partnership, or any other type of organization (including nonprofit, charitable, educational, etc.).

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