The key to preparing IFTA reports is careful record keeping. That’s especially true when you manage your taxes without our fuel tax reporting software.
You probably don’t want to hear this, but it’s time to start thinking about IFTA reporting for the July through September quarter. November 2nd is the deadline for the 3rd quarter, and it’s coming up quickly, so you need to get busy.
Remember, late filing can result in fines or penalties. Plus, if you’re due a refund, you don’t want to jeopardize it. You also don’t want delays in receiving your renewed IFTA sticker. Here’s where you should start:
- Gather all receipts of tax-paid purchases including date, fuel type, name and address of the seller, your name and vehicle registration number, the dollar amount of purchase, and the number of gallons.
- Provide records of monthly individual vehicle mileage per jurisdiction.
- Include trip reports with beginning and end dates, routes, start, and stop points.
Of course, if you’re new to the trucking industry, you’ve got a lot more to learn about IFTA. The best way to start is to sign up with your base state’s website and create an IFTA login to find all the basic rules and regulations. Once you’ve done that, you’ll be convinced that you’re gonna need help. That’s when you should try our TruckingOffice TMS to find out how much easier the IFTA reporting process can be.
Let’s Talk About the Right Tools
You’re never going to try to change a tire if you don’t have the right tools. It would be stupid – and dangerous. Trying to do any mechanical task requires some tools and a good knowledge base to do the job right and quickly. The right tools will make a difference between success and failure.
It wasn’t so long ago that we were still using paper maps and hand-written directions to get our loads delivered to the right place. Between PC*Miler and Google Maps, trying to fold up a paper map is now a waste of time. We’ve got new, better tools to help us.
So why wouldn’t you use the right tool to complete your IFTA report?
IFTA report software is a waste
You’ll hear truckers talk about software. “Takes too long to learn.” “Too expensive.” “I don’t want to sit in front of a computer for hours.”
We get that a lot from some truckers. So we’ve created a list of important details you need if you’re not going to use software to make the taxpaying process as easy as possible:
- Keep all of your fuel receipts and organize them according to the state.
- Make sure your duty logs are accurate and up-to-date at all times. This is vital to surviving an audit if the tax people come knocking on your door.
- Record every mile you drive, even when this adds to the per-state totals. For example, many truckers go out of their way to avoid congested cities like Washington and New York. This is fine, so long as your records report these longer trips. PC*Miler is a fantastic tool, but don’t rely on it alone, especially when you venture from established routes.
- Everyone experiences financial ups and downs. If you ever have trouble paying your IFTA taxes, then let the proper authorities know right away. Generally, the agencies are quite reasonable with those who are upfront and honest about such matters. Don’t just cross your fingers and hope they won’t notice. They will.
That’s a lot of work to maintain those logs, and then to sit down with a paper and pencil to figure them out correctly. It’s like using a hammer to drive a screw or a wrench on a nail. Why don’t you use the right tools to do the job right?
We actually agree with that statement. Software that only does the IFTA is a waste. You need a software package that does more with the data you only enter once. No simple IFTA report software that’s only for the IFTA is worth the money.
Use a solid software package that’s designed with truckers in mind. For example, TruckingOffice has powerful features created specifically for transportation professionals like yourself. Not only can TruckingOffice streamline IFTA tax preparation, but it can turbocharge every aspect of running your business, giving you more time to stay behind the wheel earning money.
We hope these tips make filling out IFTA reports quicker and easier. Good luck with that.
But maybe you’re ready to discover that the right software tools which will save you hours of time and money.
Why not take TruckingOffice for a free 30-day test drive starting today? We won’t ask for your checking account or credit card information unless you decide to stick with us for the long haul. That’s how sure we are that you’ll love our product. So give it a shot. You’ll soon wonder how you ever got along without it.