Electronic logging devices (ELD) may help support the California use tax exemption for trucks or trailers used in interstate or foreign commerce. ELD records show the location and use of a truck or trailer during the six-month test period for the exemption.
The U.S. Department of Transportation now requires interstate motor carriers and truck drivers to use ELDs to keep records on:
- driving time;
- mileage; and
- other service hour data.
The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) encourages those motor carriers and truck drivers to keep their ELD records for at least eight years. The CDTFA may use these records to determine whether your truck or trailer purchase qualifies for the exemption.
Interstate or Foreign Commerce Exemption for Trucks or Trailers
Generally, use tax applies when California residents purchase and use trucks or trailers out-of-state, but bring them to California within the 12 months of ownership. However, a purchase may qualify for the exemption if it was purchased and primarily used in interstate or foreign commerce.
Special Notice L-548, California Department of Tax and Fee Administration, May 2018