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Home > Motor Carrier Service > Fuel Tax Licensing & Reporting

Fuel Tax Licensing and Reporting
Tel: (207) 624-9000 ext. 52136 Fuel Tax or ext. 52137 Fuel License/Decals
Fax: (207) 624-9062
Email: ifta.bmv@maine.gov

General Information

Carriers operating qualified motor vehicles in Maine are required to satisfy fuel tax licensing and reporting requirements. Maine is a member of the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA).  Any carrier based in an IFTA member jurisdiction operating a qualified motor vehicle(s) in two or more member jurisdictions is required to license under IFTA. In lieu of licensing under IFTA, a carrier may elect to satisfy motor fuel use tax licensing and reporting requirements on a trip-by-trip basis by using trip permits.

Under IFTA motor carriers apply only to their base (home) jurisdiction to license for fuel tax reporting in all IFTA member jurisdictions. The base jurisdiction issues the carrier a license and vehicle decals which are valid in all IFTA jurisdictions. No IFTA jurisdiction may require any additional fuel tax licensing requirements. The carrier makes quarterly tax reports and payments to its base jurisdiction covering fleet operations in all IFTA jurisdictions. The base jurisdiction, in turn, distributes tax payments to the other IFTA jurisdictions, as appropriate. The base jurisdiction also is responsible for fuel tax auditing. Generally, in IFTA, only a carrier's base jurisdiction may conduct an audit. Where appropriate, Maine conducts combined IFTA/IRP audits.

Maine-based intrastate carriers and carriers from non-IFTA jurisdictions operating qualified motor vehicles in Maine also must license for fuel tax reporting under Maine’s intrastate fuel tax licensing and reporting program.

Maine may be your base jurisdiction if:

1.    You register qualified motor vehicles in Maine; and
2.    You maintain your mileage records in Maine, or can make those records available in Maine; and
3.    Some travel is accrued in Maine by qualified motor vehicles within the fleet.

A qualified motor vehicle is a motor vehicle used, designed, or maintained for transportation of persons or property, and               

1.    Having two axles and a gross vehicle weight or registered gross vehicle weight in excess of 26,000 pounds; or
2.    Having three or more axles regardless of gross weight; or
3.    Is used in combination, when the weight of such combination exceeds 26,000 pounds gross vehicle or registered gross vehicle weight; or
4.    Is designed to carry 20 or more passengers (intrastate fuel licensing only).

Maine requires carriers operating qualified motor vehicles using special fuel such as diesel, propane, or natural gas to be licensed for fuel tax reporting. Some jurisdictions require carriers operating gasoline-powered vehicles to be licensed. If you own gasoline-powered, qualified motor vehicles you should check the requirements of the jurisdictions in which you plan to operate. Maine-based carriers with qualified gasoline-powered vehicles traveling in other IFTA member jurisdictions that require licensing and tax reporting will still license under IFTA with the State of Maine.

All carriers based and licensed in Maine for fuel tax reporting must notify the Fuel Tax or Decal Unit of any change of address within 30 days of the change.


IFTA Fuel Tax Licensing and Reporting


Application Process
:
IFTA requires an annual license and vehicle decals. The annual licensing and reporting period for IFTA is January 1 through December 31. Maine BMV will mail renewal applications automatically to all active accounts approximately 60 days prior to the start of the new license year. Approved online carriers will receive an email when the renewal application is available to download. Licensees that do not receive an application should call 207-624-9000 ext. 52137. An annual license will be issued upon successful processing of an IFTA application. All IFTA licenses expire December 31. A copy of the IFTA license must be carried in each qualified motor vehicle.

IFTA Decals:
IFTA licensees are issued a set of two IFTA decals for each qualified motor vehicle. One decal is placed on each side of the vehicle, usually on the doors. IFTA decals expire December 31. Maine charges $5.00 for each set of decals.  Additional decals may be purchased throughout the year when vehicles are added to a licensee’s fleet.

Replacement Decals:
Decals may be replaced without payment of additional fees only under the following conditions:    

1.    The licensee certifies that the decals originally issued were never received; or
2.    The decals are defective, and the licensee certifies that the decals were lost or destroyed due to the defect.

Temporary Decal Permit:
A new licensee or a licensee in good standing acquiring additional decals may obtain a temporary 30-day decal permit to operate a specific qualified motor vehicle while awaiting receipt of the actual decal. The temporary decal permit application may be obtained by utilizing the appropriate link at the bottom of this document. The 30-day temporary decal permit must be carried in the vehicle along with a copy of the fuel license and must be presented to any law enforcement officer on demand. The actual decal(s) will be mailed to the licensee prior to the expiration of the 30-day temporary decal permit.

Fuel Tax Reporting:
Carriers licensed for fuel tax reporting are required to make calendar quarterly fuel tax reports. For IFTA licensees, the reports cover travel for all qualified motor vehicles in all IFTA jurisdictions for the appropriate quarter. Tax returns will be mailed to all active IFTA licensees unless the licensee is registered as an online IFTA account user.  Online IFTA accounts will receive an email notification when the tax return is available to process online.

IFTA tax returns are due and must be postmarked or filed online no later than the last day of the month following the end of the quarter to be timely.

Quarterly reports must be accompanied by any tax payment that may be due. IFTA licensees make one payment for all IFTA jurisdictions. Checks must be made payable to the Maine Secretary of State. If a licensee’s return credits from tax-paid fuel exceed taxes owed, the licensee will receive either a refund upon request or a credit to be applied to future tax liabilities. Credit amounts less than $100.00 will not be refunded except when processed in conjunction with a request to close a licensee’s account or after eight calendar quarters have passed from the end of the calendar quarter in which the credit was accrued.

Interest Assessment:
Late filings or late payments will incur interest computed monthly on the tax due from the return due date until the tax is paid.  Interest is set at an annual rate of two (2) percentage points above the underpayment rate established under Section 6621(a)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, adjusted on an annual basis on January 1 of each year. Interest is computed at 1/12 this annual rate per month or part of a month.  The current interest rate for calendar 2014 is set at 0.42% (0.0042) per month or part of a month, based on the IFTA annual interest rate of 5.00% (0.0500).

Jurisdiction Fuel Tax Rates:
IFTA tax rate tables may be viewed at http://www.iftach.org/taxmatrix3/choose tableq2.php .

Tax-Paid Fuel Purchases (Receipts):
Credit may be taken for any fuel bought tax-paid in an IFTA jurisdiction. In order to receive credit, a licensee must have a receipt for the tax-paid fuel. The following receipt information is required:

1.    Date of purchase
2.    Seller's name and address
3.    Number of gallons or liters purchased
4.    Fuel type
5.    Price per gallon or liter, or total amount of sale
6.    Vehicle registration number
7.    Purchaser's name

Record Keeping Requirements:
Each licensee must maintain operational records to substantiate the information reported on the quarterly tax returns. Recordkeeping requirements are detailed in Section P500 of the IFTA Procedures Manual which can be found at http://www.iftach.org/ .  Licensees are required to maintain individual vehicle mileage reports and to summarize these reports monthly. In addition to keeping the mileage information, licensees must maintain information on any fuel purchased from a service station, and any fuel removed from bulk storage.

Complete records are required for all miles of travel including miles outside of the IFTA jurisdictions. Records must be maintained for four years from the tax return due date or filing date, whichever is later.

Approved Online Carrier/Filing IFTA Returns Online:
A carrier with an active account and internet access may request to become an online carrier.  An application must be completed for the carrier and also for any users that will be granted access to the carrier’s account.  A carrier must either attend one-on-one system training at the Bureau of Motor Vehicles Main Office in Augusta or view several informational system tutorials online before system access is granted.  Upon completion of these few basic requirements Motor Carrier Services will grant the carrier access to the online system.

Online carriers can:
                Edit Account Information
                Renew their IFTA License
                View and Print their IFTA License
                View IFTA Decal Orders as well order Additional Decals
                File IFTA Quarterly Tax Returns
                View and Print Copies of Quarterly IFTA Tax Returns
                View IFTA tax return history
                View and print IFTA billing invoices

Additionally, online carriers have the capability to upload quarterly IFTA tax returns using an XML or CSV file format.

Requesting Online Carrier Privileges:
Maine carriers with an established account may request online internet access.  You will need to:
               
1. Submit a completed application for Carrier access
2. Submit a completed application of Users of the Carrier account (application links appear at
    the bottom of this page).

Additionally, you will need to request access electronically by navigating to https://www.meirp.com or https://www.meifta.com and click on the hyperlink at the bottom of the page to request internet access to their carrier account.  Carriers may also call the IFTA Tax Unit directly at 624-9000 ext. 52136.

Trip Permits. In lieu of fuel tax licensing a carrier may obtain trip permits. Maine’s 72 Consecutive Hour Fuel Trip Permit may be obtained through a permit service or directly through the Fuel Decal Unit by calling (207) 624-9000 ext. 52137. The fuel trip permit application may be obtained online at http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/forms/index.html .  The trip permit fee is fifty dollars ($50) and the permit is valid for 72 consecutive hours.

Intrastate Fuel Tax Licensing and Reporting (Non-IFTA Carriers)

Application Process:
Maine carriers who never leave the state and carriers from non-IFTA jurisdictions operating qualified motor vehicles in Maine are required to license annually for fuel tax reporting. The annual intrastate (Maine Only) licensing and reporting period is July 1 through June 30. Maine BMV will mail renewal applications automatically to all active accounts approximately 60 days prior to the start of the new license year. Licensees that do not receive a renewal application should call 207-624-9000 ext. 52137. An annual license will be issued upon successful processing of a Maine Only application. All intrastate licenses expire June 30. A copy of the intrastate (Maine Only) license must be carried in each qualified motor vehicle.

Intrastate (Maine Only) Decals:
Intrastate licensees are issued one fuel use identification decal for each qualified motor vehicle. The decal is placed on the driver’s side of the vehicle, usually on the door. Intrastate decals expire June 30. Maine charges $5.00 for each decal.  Additional decals may be purchased throughout the year when vehicles are added to a licensee’s fleet.

Replacement Decals:
Decals may be replaced without payment of additional fees only under the following conditions:    

1.    The licensee certifies that the decals originally issued were never received; or
2.    The decals are defective, and the licensee certifies that the decals were lost or destroyed due to the defect.

Temporary Decal Permit:
A new licensee or a licensee in good standing acquiring additional decals may obtain a temporary 30-day decal permit to operate a specific qualified motor vehicle while awaiting receipt of the actual decal.  The temporary decal permit application may be obtained by utilizing the appropriate link at the bottom of this document. The 30-day temporary decal permit must be carried in the vehicle along with a copy of the fuel license and must be presented to any law enforcement officer on demand. The actual decal(s) will be mailed to the licensee prior to the expiration of the 30-day temporary decal permit.

Fuel Tax Reporting:
Maine-based carriers not licensed in IFTA who certify that all fuel is bought tax-paid in Maine may be excused from filing fuel tax reports, but must provide their annual fleet mileage, number of gallons consumed, and months operated on their intrastate fuel license renewal application. Out-of-State carriers not in IFTA must license and make quarterly fuel tax reports or obtain fuel trip permits.

Record Keeping Requirements:
The record keeping requirements are the same as for IFTA licensees.

Forms and Instructions

The following forms and instructions are available online:

72 Consecutive Hour Trip Permit (.pdf)
IFTA Temporary Decal Permit Application (.pdf)
Maine Temporary Decal Permit Application (.pdf)

International Fuel Tax Agreement Application
IFTA Application (.pdf)

Special Fuel User's Application
Instructions in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf)
Maine Only Application in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf)
(The Multi-purpose Application is for New Applicants or Additional Decal requests only)

Off Highway Special Fuel and Gasoline Refund Application
Off Highway Application (this link will take you to the Maine Revenue Services Off Highway Refund Program web site)

Applications for On Line Carrier Request
IFTA On Line Carrier Account Application (pdf.)
IFTA On Line User Account Application (pdf.)

Additional Information Links

IFTA, Inc.
IFTA tax rate tables

Department of the Secretary of State Rule Chapter 165

Questions or comments can be sent to the Fuel Tax Unit at: ifta.bmv@maine.gov