Construction Excise Tax and Credits


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Top Takeaways

1: The Heavy Highway Vehicle Tax May Apply

The heavy highway vehicle tax applies to trucks or truck tractors if it’s a highway motor vehicle that is registered or required to be registered for highway use and is used on public highways.  It must have a taxable gross weight of at least 55,000 pounds.  This means the total weight of the vehicle, the trailers and semi-trailers normally used with the vehicle, and the maximum load.

The applicable tax depends on the category of the vehicle and the month the vehicle was used on public highways.  For a full year of use, the tax ranges from $91.67 to $504.17 in 2011.  Use IRS Form 2290 to calculate the tax due.

2: Federal Fuel Excise Taxes May Apply

There is a federal excise tax imposed on gasoline, clear diesel fuel and clear kerosene.   The federal rates vary by type of fuel.

3: There are Credits Available to Offset the Federal Fuel Excise Tax

A credit may be available if these fuels are spent in an off-road use.  Some common off-road uses include the use as heating oil; in a stationary engine; or in non-highway vehicles.  Generally, refunds of $750 or more may be claimed quarterly using IRS Form 8849.  Claims not made on this form can be claimed as income tax credit on IRS Form 4136.

It is important to note that the credit or refund is not allowed for any use in the propulsion engine of a registered highway vehicle, even if it is used off the highway or if the fuel is lost or destroyed.

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