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Collage: Bridge, Currency and Trucks

What Is the HVUT and
  Who Must Pay It?


The heavy vehicle use tax or HVUT is a fee assessed annually 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

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
Over 75,000 lbs $550

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.

More Information

Link to IRS Form 2290: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2290.pdf
Link to IRS Form 2290 Instructions: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i2290.pdf

 

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