International Fuel Tax Agreement or IFTA tax preparation doesn’t have to drive you crazy.
Here are some tips for making this essential task simpler and easier.
- Keep your mileage log accurate and up-to-date. This is important whether you’re using manual or electronic records. It will help keep you out of trouble in case a state auditor gives you a call.
- Keep all fuel receipts and organize them by state. This is just as important to IFTA tax preparation as your mileage log.
- Keep a record of your odometer readings per state. This is important because some drivers go “state shopping”; that is, they log extra miles in states with low IFTA taxes and “forget” to add extra miles driven in different regions. Tricks like this will have the auditors paying you a visit.
- The auditors know their jobs; if you took a longer route to avoid the traffic in Washington, DC or Atlanta, then record this in your books. If you report the exact miles listed in PC*MILER without adding in these exceptions, then you may find yourself dealing with a state official who will make your life very difficult.
- Sometimes truck-stop fuel receipts don’t reflect the total amount of IFTA taxes you paid. Keep separate records of these amounts. If you have company drivers, then make sure they do this as well. Paying too much can definitely impact your bottom line.
- As with all businesses, trucking has periods of slow activity. If your miles vary widely from one quarter to the next, then be prepared for an IFTA auditor to ask you about the variations. While auditors understand this can happen normally, big changes from one quarter to the next occasionally trigger an audit.
If you don’t want to deal with all of that…
- The best tip we can give you for IFTA tax preparation is to use TruckingOffice software. Our product offers an unbeatable combination of benefits tailored specifically to transportation professionals like yourself.
Check it out by taking TruckingOffice for a free 30-day test drive starting today. Contact us for more information.