Tuesday, June 30, 2015

2nd Quarter Filing: Available Now!

Well July is nearly underway, and along with the warm weather comes the beginning of both HVUT season and the 2nd quarter filing deadline. Trying to remember what needs to be done can be a daunting task, but luckily for you, Truck Services of North America is here.

Below you’ll find everything you need to know about the 2nd quarter deadline, and how we can help!

What Do I Need to File?

For the quarter that just ended, there are several use taxes that are due before the quarter’s filing deadline including:

  • NY Highway Use Tax- All vehicles with a gross taxable weight of over 18,000 lbs must file quarterly based on the amount of miles traveled on New York highways during the period. If you only travel through New York on occasion, a temporary trip permit can be obtained, although you cannot use more than 10 temporary permits per year. If you need help acquiring one of these permits, give us a call!
  • Oregon Highway Use Tax- Oregon requires all vehicles with a gross taxable weight over 26,000 lbs to pay a weight-mile tax for the amount of mileage traveled on Oregon roads. The higher the weight of the truck, the higher the tax paid per mile is. Vehicles in Oregon also must pay a bond for their vehicle to the Department of Transportation as a guarantee of payment of fees and taxes.
  • New Mexico Highway Use Tax- All vehicles with a gross taxable weight of over 26,000 lbs must file quarterly based on the number of miles traveled on New Mexico roads. Each year, companies that operate in New Mexico must obtain a New Mexico Weight Distance Tax Permit for each vehicle that travels on public roads. The tax amount for vehicles varies, as it is graduated and increases as the weight of the vehicle increases. 
  • Kentucky Highway Use Tax- The Kentucky highway use tax is determined by the mileage traveled by each heavy truck within the state of Kentucky. The tax is only for vehicles with a taxable gross weight of over 60,000 lbs. (Except for buses and vehicles with farm licenses) Before you can file this tax, you also must have a tax license in Kentucky with a valid KYU number. 
  • IFTA Fuel Tax- The lower 48 states and Canadian provinces are all subject to the International Fuel Tax Agreement. The agreement requires all motor carriers that operate in more than one jurisdiction file a quarterly fuel tax report with the mileage traveled and fuel purchased in each state. This helps ensure that the taxes collected are redistributed to the state where the tax is due. 
In addition to the second quarter ending, July 1 is also the beginning of the HVUT renewal season. While there may be a lot going on during the month of July, be sure you don’t forget to file!

When Do I Have to File?

The quarterly deadline for IFTA taxes and weight-mile taxes is on July 31. HVUT season is also underway, and although this tax period runs during the same time as the others, you have until August 31 to file Form 2290 for an HVUT return.

If you were thinking that you’ll just wait until the last minute to get everything done then think again. The longer you wait, the less time you leave yourself in the event of a mistake, and you are more likely to subject yourself to excess fees and late penalties. If you don’t feel like filing or don’t think you’ll be able to find the time to get everything done by the end of the month, then luckily for you, there’s TSNAmerica. We can file your 2290 over the phone with a short 5-minute call!

Let TSNA Help

Between having to file a plethora of things every year, some annually and others quarterly, we know it can be a confusing mess. That’s why at Truck Services of North America we are always up-to-date on the latest trucking regulations. Not only can we answer your questions but we can also help you take care of permit registration, tax filing, and more. All it takes is a quick phone call! You can reach us by phone at 803.386.0320 or you can email us at
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Thursday, June 25, 2015

HazMat Certificate Deadline: Let TSNA Help You Register!

With the beginning of HVUT season comes the end of the HazMat Registration period. If you need to renew your certificate it’s not too late yet, but the deadline to register is less than a week away! For those that successfully waited until the last minute, it’s officially your time to register.

If you’re unfamiliar with the registration process or need a slight refresher, we’ve highlighted everything you need to know about applying for a Hazmat Certificate of Registration.

Who Needs to Register:

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) requires anyone that offers transportation of shipments containing hazardous materials, including hazardous waste, file a registration statement with the DOT and pay an annual fee. This is required for transporting any hazardous material that requires a US DOT placard, including oil, petroleum, and propane.

When and How Do I Register?

The hazmat registration period began on May 1 and the deadline to register is June 30. There are three different ways to register for a Hazmat certificate, including:

  • Visiting the PHMSA website 
  • Sending in a registration form via postal mail
  • Calling TSNAmerica! Let us do it for you!

What if I Register Late?

Don’t let this happen, you just read our warning that the deadline is less than a week away! But if for some reason you do register after the deadline, you will be subject to penalty from your local, state, or federal government. If a roadside inspection or Department of Transportation audit shows that your truck is not properly registered, you can be fined up to $32,000 per day of violation and lose interstate or intrastate operating authority. If you aren’t sure if your truck is registered, you can always be safe and check the PHMSA company registration search.

Once I Register Am I Done?

After registering, you must also keep copies of both the registration statement and the certificate of registration for three years at your place of business so it is available for inspection. All motor carriers and vessel operators must also keep the current copy of their registration certificate, or a document with the current registration number on board.

If you have any questions about getting your Hazmat Registration Certificate, just give us a call at 803.386.0320 or email us at Not only will we answer any questions you have about the registration process, but we can also do it for you! So if you’re in a crunch for time or just flat out don’t want to deal with it, then let TSNAmerica take it off your plate.

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Thursday, June 18, 2015

Prepare Yourself - 2nd Quarter Tax Deadlines

Tax season is officially ramping up with deadlines seemingly around every corner. In addition to the beginning of the new HVUT season, there are several other important tax dates in July that you should be aware of. Come July 31, IFTA taxes are due, as are special use taxes for the states of New York, Oregon, New Mexico, and Kentucky. So save yourself a major headache come the end of July by knowing what you need to pay and when.

IFTA Tax Filing

IFTA filing, as you may or may not already know, must be done every quarter. The quarter ends on June 30, and the filing deadline is July 31. The best way to simplify this process is to prepare yourself.

The most important aspect of preparation is keeping track of your mileage. Whether you use manual trip sheets, GPS, or electronic trip sheets, you will need to have that information not only for your quarterly IFTA return, but also on file in case you are ever audited by your base jurisdiction. You’ll also need your fuel receipts so you know exactly how many gallons of fuel were purchased in each state. 

Other Quarterly Use Taxes

In addition to the IFTA deadline, July 31 is also the deadline for several different state use taxes. The states that have special use taxes are:

  • Kentucky- Kentucky requires all commercial vehicles with a gross weight of 60,000 pounds or more traveling either into or through Kentucky to be registered with the state. Once registered, drivers will receive a KYU number and are then required to file a quarterly return and pay mileage taxes to the state of Kentucky. If you are only traveling through the state for one particular trip, temporary permits can also be obtained. 
  • Oregon- All commercial carriers with a gross weight of 26,000 lbs or more must obtain a temporary permit to travel through or into Oregon. However, Oregon does not belong to the International Fuel Tax Agreement, although a proper tax permit is still necessary for entry into the state. Carriers that enter without proper documentation will face heavy fines. Oregon also requires that all new entrants become bonded before permanent credentials are issued. Bonds must be placed by a surety company or posted with cash. The size of the fleet is what determines the amount of the bond.
  • New Mexico- All commercial vehicles with a gross weight over 26,000 pounds are required to be registered with the state before traveling in or through New Mexico. If you are not already registered, entrance can be paid at the port. Once a weight distance account has been established for you in New Mexico, you are then required to file quarterly reports and pay tax on the mileage you travel. 
  • New York- New York requires carriers operating motor vehicles that weight 18,000 lbs or more to register and obtain NYHUT, or New York Heavy Vehicle Use Tax credentials. Once you have a NYHUT account established, you must then file and pay mileage tax every quarter. 
At TSNAmerica, we’ll not only help answer any questions you have about any of these taxes, but we’ll help file them for you. Just give us a call at 803.386.0320 or email us a service request to We also offer an abundance of other services for truckers, and you can find a full list of them here.

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Thursday, June 11, 2015

Recordkeeping: Do's and Don'ts

Since being on the road is your profession, it can be hard to find both the time and the space to keep proper records.

We know you’re busy, and it’s easy to just toss old receipts on the dash of your truck and go about your business, thinking that you’ll organize them later. More often than not, this leads to receipts and important information being either lost or misplaced.

Ever been audited by the IRS? What about you base jurisdiction? Well if you have, we’re sure that you don’t want to go through that again, and if you haven’t, well, you’ll just have to take our word for it.

The best way to avoid or quicken the process of an audit is to keep accurate records. That way, if there’s anything that the IRS is questioning, you have it right there in front of you and can show the proper documentation for any inconsistencies.

If you’re confused about what you should be keeping a record of, no worries, just keep reading and we’ll tell some do’s and don’ts of keeping records for the trucking industry, and how we can help make the process easier.

Do’s and Don’ts of Good Recordkeeping

Do: Keep record of all of your fuel purchases, including the amount, type of fuel purchased, name and address of the gas station, cost per gallon, total sale amount, and the original receipt.

Don’t: Try to recreate a fuel transactions record by combining a sloppy pile of balled up fuel receipts. Losing just one of those receipts can cost you hundreds out of your own pocket.


Do: Keep track of the total distance you have driven, including your mileage driven in each jurisdiction, the routes you drove, and any out-of-route mileage accrued.

Don’t: Record estimated mileage as actual mileage, as this can not only leave out the miles you drive, but can also make you deviate the details of your trip. Detours are fine, just be sure to record them and do it accurately when you do.


Do: Keep track of all tax records, including records from returns for your previous three years. It is required by the IRS that records must be kept for all taxable highway vehicles in your name for at least three years after the date that the tax is either due or paid, whichever one is later.

Don’t: Assume that if you’ve paid your HVUT for the past year that you are in the clear. If you’ve ever been audited by the IRS, then you know that it’s not a fun process, and without three years of Schedule 1’s in your truck, it could happen any time you stop to weigh-in.


Do: Keep truck maintenance records and service records so that you know when your truck needs to be serviced for any reason. Trucking is your livelihood, so why not take all necessary steps to ensure that the life of your truck is as long as possible.

Don’t: Try to remember maintenance and service on your own in your head. Not keeping up with routine maintenance when it’s necessary can lead to major and costly problems down the road for your truck.


Do: Be sure to keep track of your logbook accurately, because an unkept logbook can spell disaster for an independent trucker. It is required that truckers keep a logbook that tracks their location and the time spent both on and off duty.

Don’t: Try to remember the details to add in your logbook later or input information into your logbook that you are not sure is accurate. Falsifying a logbook is a serious offense, and the DOT can prosecute drivers that do so.


Do: Keep track of other job-related expenses. In addition to fuel receipts, there are many other miscellaneous expenses that are incurred by truckers. For example, CAT scale charges, meals, lodging, or anything else that you ultimately expect to be reimbursed for.

Don’t: Lose a receipt of any type. Lost receipts equal lost money, and nobody likes losing money. So find an effective way to keep track of all of your receipts while you are on the road.


There are a lot of records that must be kept as a truck driver or owner-operator and keeping them can be quite a hassle. If you’re tired of dealing with this hassle all by yourself, then we’ve got good news for you.

At TSNAmerica, we’ll let you know what you need to keep track of and the best way to do it, so that you can focus on the road. If you have any questions about the types of records you should be keeping, you can email us at, or give us a call at 803.386.0320.

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Thursday, June 4, 2015

Updating Your USDOT Number: Everything You Need to Know

We understand what a pain it is to remember everything that needs to be done throughout the year to keep your truck on the road legally. You’ve got vehicle registration, annual HVUT renewals, quarterly IFTA filings, HazMat Certificate registration, and of course, DOT number biennial updates.

If you’re asking yourself right now what in the world DOT biennial updates are, or when you need to get your own updated, then keep reading and we’ll tell you what it is, how to get one, who needs to update, and when.

What is a USDOT Number?

A DOT number is issued by the Department of Transportation and it serves as a unique identifier when collecting and monitoring a company’s safety information acquired during audits, compliance reviews, crash investigations, and inspections.

Do I Need a DOT Number?

Companies that operate commercial vehicles transporting passengers or hauling cargo in interstate commerce must be registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), and must also have a DOT number.

Here are the specific requirements for interstate vehicles requiring a DOT number:

  • Your vehicle has a gross combined weight of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Your vehicle transports 8 or more passengers for compensation 
  • Your vehicle transports 15 or more passengers whether it is for compensation or not
  • You transport hazardous materials 
If you travel intrastate only, meaning only within a specific state, you are required to obtain a DOT number if you transport hazardous materials or if you are operating in one of the 33 states the requires all commercial carriers to have a DOT number. For a list of those states, you can visit

Once you obtain your DOT number, you will be issued a PIN that is needed to update your information every other year with the FMCSA.

Is It Time for My Biennial Update?

All DOT numbers must be updated with the FMCSA biennially (meaning every two years), in order to remain active. Even if none of your businesses information has changed, your business has ceased interstate operations since the last update, or you are no longer in business and did not already notify the FMCSA, you are still required to update.

The deadline for you to update is determined by the last digit in your DOT number. Each digit corresponds to the month in which you should update. Refer to the chart below to see exactly when you need to file based on the last digit of your DOT number.

USDOT number ending in: Must file by last day of:

  • 1: January
  • 2: February
  • 3: March
  • 4: April
  • 5: May
  • 6: June
  • 7: July
  • 8: August
  • 9: September
  • 0: October
If the next-to-last digit of your DOT number is odd, the update is necessary every odd-numbered calendar year. If the next-to-last digit of your DOT number is even, then the update is necessary every even-numbered calendar year.

If you fail to complete your biennial update, it will result in the deactivation of your DOT number, and it may result in civil penalties of up to $1,000 per day, not to exceed $10,000.

How Can I Update Mine?

The easiest way, of course, is by contacting your friends at TSNAmerica! We provide a wide variety of services, and of course, DOT number registration and updates are among them!

You can also update yourself online by visiting the FMCSA website. But why add more to your plate when you’re already busy doing what you do best! Let us do our thing. And once you’re our customer, you’ll get the added benefit of us reminding you every time you need an update. At TSNAmerica, we take pride in our great service and going the extra mile, give us a call today at 803.386.0320 and see for yourself!
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