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Licensing and Permitting with Great Plains

When you open your own trucking service, you may have questions about the rules and regulations surrounding permits and licenses. The experts at Great Plains are here to help.

Our Authority Department Assists in the Following Regulations

IFTA & quarterly fuel & mileage tax reporting

The International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) is an agreement among jurisdictions in the United States and Canada.  IFTA simplifies the reporting of miles traveled and fuel used by motor carriers operating in more than one jurisdiction. A carrier receives an IFTA license and 2 decals for each qualified vehicle it operates from their base state. The carrier is then responsible for filing a quarterly fuel tax return. This tax return is used to determine the net fuel tax owed or tax credited to the carriers. The carrier also distributes taxes between the states and Canadian provinces.

IFTA tax is required for motor vehicles used, designed, or maintained for the transportation of persons or property with:

  1. 2 axles and a registered gross vehicle weight over 26,000 pounds, or
  2. 3 or more axles regardless of weight, or
  3. Is used in combination and the weight of the combination exceeds 26,000 pounds

Feel free to contact Great Plains to learn more about our Fuel Tax Services!

IRP/Prorate registration

The International Registration Plan (IRP) is a registration agreement between jurisdictions in the United States and Canada.  It allows vehicles traveling in two or more jurisdictions to register with their base state rather than registering with each jurisdiction the vehicle travels.  Qualified vehicles are any power unit that:

  1. Has two axles and a gross weight or registered gross weight over 26,000 pounds; or
  2. Has three or more axles regardless of weight; or
  3. Is used in combination and the weight of the combination exceeds 26,000 pounds

Mileage account applications, supplements, and renewals

Some states have mileage tax in addition to or in lieu of IFTA tax, specifically Kentucky, New Mexico, New York, and Oregon. A carrier can purchase trip permits prior to entry directly from the state. The carrier pays the mileage tax at the time of trip permit purchase or establishes a mileage tax account with the state and files quarterly mileage tax returns.

USDOT applications & updates

USDOT numbers are issues by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).  USDOT numbers serve as a unique identifier when collecting and monitoring a company's safety information acquired during audits, compliance reviews, accident investigations and inspections.

  • A USDOT number is required for vehicles that travel interstate, haul cargo or have passengers and meet 1 or more of the following criteria:
  • A gross vehicle weight rating or gross combined weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more, whichever is greater, or
  • Designed or used to transport more than 8 passengers (including the driver) for compensation, or
  • Designed or used to transport more than 15 passengers (including the driver) and is not used to transport passengers for compensation, or
  • Transports hazardous materials

Carriers who only travel intrastate are required to obtain a USDOT number if transporting hazardous materials or traveling intrastate in a state requiring an intrastate DOT number.

Intrastate authority applications

Transportation within a single state is known as intrastate commerce. Some states require an operating authority to haul within the boundaries of the state.

FMCSA for-hire and brokerage authority applications

Carriers transporting federally regulated commodities for a fee or other compensation in interstate commerce are required to obtain a federal for-hire authority (MC permit) from FMCSA.  The carrier is required to carry a copy of the MC permit in each truck. A person or company arranging for the transportation of property by a motor carrier is also required to obtain a brokerage authority (MC permit) from FMCSA.

Process agent filings

A process agent is a representative in each state to whom court documents can be served to should a proceeding be brought against a carrier, broker or freight forwarder. A process agent filing is required for carriers operating interstate or hauling federally regulated commodities under a federal authority (MC permit).

  1. Under the new Unified Carrier Registration System, all motor carriers of property and passengers will be required to have a process agent filing.

Unified Carriers Registration (UCR)

Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) applies to all passengers, property and private carrier operating commercial vehicles in interstate commerce as well as freight forwarders, brokers and leasing companies. Annual registration and fee payment is required.

IRS 2290 HVUT filings

As required by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) the Excise Tax Form 2290 Heavy Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT) return is used to calculate the total road use tax due on vehicles registered for a gross weight of 55,000 pounds or greater. The form is also used to report vehicles where the tax is suspended; those vehicles operating 5,000 miles or less or agricultural vehicles traveling 7,500 miles or less. The HVUT tax period is July 1 through June 30.

  1. A copy of the HVUT Schedule 1 stamped "received/paid" by the IRS is required as proof of payment of the HVUT and must be presented in order to obtain vehicle registration.

Sole proprietor EIN applications

An employer identification number (EIN), also known as a federal tax identification number (FTIN), is used to identify a business entity or individual required to file and pay excise tax. The IRS Form 2290 Heavy Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT) can only be filed using the taxpayer's EIN.

Minnesota commercial vehicle title transfers

All vehicles owned by Minnesota residents or Minnesota-based IRP carriers require a Minnesota title.

  1. Vehicles that will be IRP registered and are purchased from a Minnesota licensed dealer require the dealer to file a title application, including sales tax payment.

  2. Out of state or private purchase title application should be filed via the IRP plate application.

In both cases, sales tax will be calculated based on the IRP fleet miles.

Minnesota secretary of state assumed name registration & renewals

a)  Any sole proprietor conducting business in Minnesota under a name that does not contain the full name of the individual must file a Certificate of Assumed Name with the Minnesota Secretary of State.

b) Any business entity (corporation, limited partnership, limited liability company, etc.) conducting business in Minnesota under a name other than the exact legal name of the entity must file a Certificate of Assumed Name with the Minnesota Secretary of State.

After filing an application, the secretary of state issues a Certificate of Assumed Name that must be published for 2 consecutive issues in the county where the principal place of business is located. Certificates of Assumed Name are valid for 10 years.

Ready to Get Your Authority?

Great Plains helps you keep up with your paperwork so you can focus on driving. Partner with us now to get your trucks on the road.

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