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What is the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA)?

IFTA (short for the International Fuel Tax Agreement) is an agreement among US states and Canadian provinces to make it easier for Interstate carriers to report and pay taxes on the motor fuels they use. The IFTA makes it easy for owners/operators to file their taxes via multiple states. If you operate in at least two or more member states or provinces, you can register and take advantage of everything this agreement has to offer. Your base jurisdiction will be able to issue one license in order to report and pay motor fuel taxes for a single jurisdiction. The license offers the ability to travel between all IFTA jurisdictions. The IFTA allows for filing one tax return per quarter with your home jurisdiction which will audit your fuel tax records.

By IFTA standards, you can travel in 48 states and 10 Canadian provinces. Hawaii, Alaska, and D.C. are not recognized by the IFTA. Likewise, Nunavut, Northwest Territories and Yukon Territory in Canada are not recognized by the IFTA.  In addition, there are 4 US states that still require you to register their permits regardless of an IFTA license. These states are New York, Kentucky, New Mexico, Oregon.

Do I need to register?

It is not mandatory to register for IFTA. It is highly recommended to register if you qualify. The process allows you to file a single fuel permit instead of having to request each permit from every state that you have operated in.

In order to qualify, your must have the following:

– has two axles and a registered gross vehicle weight of 26,000 pounds or more

– used in a combination that has a registered gross vehicle weight of 26,000 pounds or more.

– has three or more axles

Motor vehicles operated only for personal use are not qualified for IFTA registration.

What Is An IFTA Sticker?

Now that you have obtained your IFTA license, what’s next? Including with the IFTA license, a calendar with the required monthly decals will be provided.  These will go on every vehicle registered in your fleet.

Where Do I Place My Sticker?

One sticker must be attached to each side of the rear of the vehicle, in the lower corner. Buses must have the stickers located on each side of the bus, but no further back than behind the driver’s seat at eye level from the ground. If you do not display these stickers in the mandatory placement sites, then severe penalties can be added. Such infractions can result in the seizing and selling of your vehicle.

Most stickers are identical for the same year. Thus, any set of decals may be placed on any qualified vehicle in your fleet.

Expiration Date and Renewal Period for IFTA.

The expiration date for IFTA sticks is December 31st of each year. You must carry a current IFTA license by March 1st of each year. The current year’s sticker must be displayed on each of your vehicles. These requirements should be met if you have applied on time to renew the IFTA license and your account is in good standing. A valid IFTA license and decals from the pervious year will be honored by member jurisdiction through January/February of each year. This is in lieu of valid, current-year IFTA credentials.

When Do I File For My IFTA Quarterly Tax Return? 

You are required to have a postmark before or on the due date when sending your IFTA Tax returns.  Saturday, Sunday, or holidays are not recognized as applicable days. Thus the next business day is the final filing date. Failure to file by the due date may be subject to penalty and interest charges. If you do not receive your quarterly tax return in the mail, it is still mandatory that you file on time. If your tax has not been sent to at least 14 days prior to the due date, then you must call for a replacement.

Important Note: It is mandatory to file an IFTA tax return even if you do not travel during a given quarter.

Tax Return Reporting QuartersDue Dates
January – MarchApril 30
April – JuneJuly 31
July – SeptemberOctober 31
October – DecemberJanuary 31

Penalties if Not Filed

If you do not meet the requirements for filing such as: not filing for a quarterly return, file by the appropriate due date, or pay the owed tax, then you may be subject to penalty and interest charges. The penalty is $50, or ten percent of the total net tax due with your return, whichever is more.

Effective DateDiesel Fuel TaxComponent BRate Per Gallon
July 1, 2017$.16$.210$.370
July 1, 2016$.16$.240$.400
July 1, 2015$.13$.320$.450
July 1, 2014$.11$.337$.447
July 1, 2013$.10$.353$.453
January 1, 2013$.10$.345$.445
July 1, 2012$.10$.305$.405
January 1, 2012$.13$.305$.435
January 1, 2011$.13$.217$.347
July 1, 2011$.13$.217.397
January 1, 2010$.18$.193$.373
January 1, 2009$.18$.257$.437
January 1, 2008$.18$.186$.366
January 1, 2007$.18$.187$.367
January 1, 2006$.18$.150$.330
January 1, 2005$.18$.115$.295
January 1, 2004$.18$.098$.278
January 1, 2003$.18$.083$.263
January 1, 2002$.18$.102$.282
January 1, 2001$.18$.091$.271
January 1, 2000$.18$.070$.250
January 1, 1999$.18$.071$.251
January 1, 1998$.18$.083$.236
January 1, 1995$.18$.0$.180

Our advice is, contact DOT Operating Authority professionals at (888) 669-4383 and seek help registering for IFTA. We are doing it every day and know all the ways of saving you time and money.

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