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The Heavy Vehicle Use Tax FAQs

Question 1: What is the Heavy Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT) and who pays it?

The heavy vehicle use tax or HVUT is a fee assessed annually on all heavy vehicles operating on public highways (any road in the United States that is not a private roadway) at registered gross weights equal to or exceeding 55,000 pounds. The gross taxable weight of a vehicle is determined by adding the unloaded weight of the motor vehicle and any trailers together with the maximum load customarily carried on-road by the truck-trailer combination.

The maximum HVUT is $550 per year.

Gross Taxable Weight HVUT 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

Question 2: Why is HVUT important?

HVUT helps level the playing field by ensuring that operators of heavy trucks pay a little more for the highway network relative to the motorists and light trucks who meet their responsibility through other forms of taxes (e.g., registration fees, motor fuel taxes) but do less damage to the system. Federal highway funds are invested in our nation’s transportation infrastructure. If a state fails one of the periodic compliance reviews, the Secretary of Transportation has the authority to withhold up to eight percent of the state’s Interstate Maintenance funds.

Question 3: Who is responsible for administering HVUT?

The DMV is required to obtain proof of HVUT payments when registering heavy trucks subject to the tax.

Question 4: How is it paid?

IRS Form 2290 is used when paying HVUT. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is responsible for collecting the tax, so all payments are made to the IRS.

  • If registration is within 60 days of vehicle use on public highways, proof of payment of Form 2290 is not required, however:
  • The tax for the current filing season will be prorated for vehicles you first use on a public highway after July. File Form 2290 (HVUT) by the last day of the month following the month in which you first used the vehicle on a public highway. See When to File Form 2290 for more details on the IRS website.
  • If registration is after 60 days of vehicle use on public highways, HVUT proof of or suspension of payment is required. The heavy use vehicle cannot be registered without proof/suspension of payment.

Question 5: What is required for proof of payment?

  • 2290 Schedule 1 with the IRS stamp that reads:
  • Received or
  • Received with Remittance or
  • Paid or
  • 2290 Schedule 1 with the IRS watermark E-File or
  • 2290 Schedule 1 with no IRS stamp with front/back of cancelled check or
  • 2290 Schedule 1 with no IRS stamp with EFTPS (Electronic Federal Tax Payment System) statement

Question 6: What is required for proof of suspension of payment?

  • 2290 Schedule 1 with Statement in Support of Suspension and IRS stamp that reads:  
  • Received

Question 7: What groups are specifically exempted from HVUT and are not required to provide Form 2290?

  • Federal Government;
  • State or local governments, including Washington, DC;
  • American Red Cross;
  • Nonprofit volunteer fire departments, ambulance associations or rescue squads;
  • Indian tribal governments (for vehicles used in essential tribal government functions; and
  • Qualified blood collector vehicles used by qualified blood collector organizations -- the organization reasonably expects at least 80 percent of the use of the vehicle by the organization during the tax period will be in the collection, storage, or transportation of blood.

Question 8: What vehicles are exempted from HVUT, but are required to provide Form 2290 to prove suspension of the tax?

  • Commercial vehicles traveling fewer than 5,000 miles annually;
  • Agriculture vehicles traveling fewer than 7,500 miles annually; and
  • Vehicles not considered heavy 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.

For more information and guidance, please contact the IRS at (866) 699-4096 (toll free). In addition, you may contact IRP at [email protected] or (202) 729-7078, (202) 729-7079, or (202) 729-7083.