Fuel tax refunds

Who may request a refund?

You may be eligible for a refund of the Washington State fuel tax if you:

  • Are an individual or company who bought at least 54 gallons of Washington tax-paid fuel in the past 13 months and used it for purposes such as boating, construction, farming, logging, or landscape/lawn maintenance.
    or
    Are a licensed special fuel distributor who sold at least 54 gallons of tax-exempt, non-dyed diesel to exempt public entities in the past 13 months.
  • Keep the following records on file:
    • All fuel receipts.
    • Documentation of the gallons of fuel used in each piece of equipment, both refundable and nonrefundable.
      • If you purchased the fuel in small containers (10 gallons or less) for non-highway use, indicate the type of equipment being used (boats, tractors, power saws, etc.)
    • Fuel inventory readings in bulk storage.
    • Detailed fuel records for all withdrawals from bulk storage.
    • On-highway and off-highway mileage records for each licensed vehicle.

How to get a fuel tax refund

If you are a… Follow these instructions…
  • Boater
  • Fuel user
  • Licensed fuel distributor
  • First, get a fuel tax refund permit:
    1. Print out and complete a Fuel Tax Refund Permit Application.
    2. Mail or fax the completed application to the address or number on the form. Note: Please don’t send fuel invoices with your refund application.
  • Then, file a refund claim:
    1. After we receive your permit application, we’ll set up a refund permit account and send you a Fuel Tax Refund Claim form with instructions.
    2. Fill out the claim form and return it with your fuel invoices to validate your off-road usage. You have 13 months from the date the fuel was purchased to submit your claim for a refund.
    3. After we’ve processed your claim form, we’ll mail you a new form for future use. The State Treasurer’s Office will mail your refund check separately.
Licensed fuel supplier, importer, exporter, or blender Refunds for exempt sales:
Your refund will be processed through your tax return.
 
Refunds for personal use:
  • First, get a fuel tax refund permit:
    1. Print out and complete a Fuel Tax Refund Permit Application.
    2. Mail or fax the completed application to the address or number on the form. Note: Please don’t send fuel invoices with your refund application.
  • Then, file a refund claim:
    1. After we receive your permit application, we’ll set up a refund permit account and send you a Fuel Tax Refund Claim form with instructions.
    2. Fill out the claim form and return it with your fuel invoices to validate your off-road usage. You have 13 months from the date the fuel was purchased to submit your claim for a refund.
    3. After we’ve processed your claim form, we’ll mail you a new form for future use. The State Treasurer’s Office will mail your refund check separately.

Refund amount

Unless exempted by law, use (sales) tax will be deducted from your fuel tax refund amount. Refunds for marine use may also be subject to Coastal Protection Fund fee.

You may choose to compute the actual sales tax deduction by including a completed Actual Cost Computation Schedule with your claim. Otherwise, we’ll calculate the deduction for you, using the average fuel cost per gallon and average sales tax rate. Since these averages change in January and July of each year, you must submit a separate claim for each period with a different rate.

Rates (per gallon): January 1, 2015 – June 30, 2015
Tax type Motor fuel Special fuel Aircraft fuel
DOL average cost of fuel purchases $3.73 $3.73 $3.73
State fuel tax $.375 $.375 $.11
Net use (sales) tax
(based on average state rate of 8.2%)
$.26 $.26 $.26
Federal fuel tax $.184 $.244 Jet fuel: $.219
Aviation gas: $.194
Coastal Protection Fund fee $.01 N/A N/A
Rates (per gallon): July 1 – December 31, 2014
Tax type Motor fuel Special fuel Aircraft fuel
DOL average cost of fuel purchases $3.49 $3.49 $3.49
State fuel tax $.375 $.375 $.11
Net use (sales) tax
(based on average state rate of 8.2%)
$.24 $.24 $.24
Federal fuel tax $.184 $.244 Jet fuel: $.219
Aviation gas: $.194
Coastal Protection Fund fee $.01 N/A N/A
Rates (per gallon): January 1 – June 30, 2014
Tax type Motor fuel Special fuel Aircraft fuel
DOL average cost of fuel purchases $3.66 $3.66 $3.66
State fuel tax $.375 $.375 $.11
Net use (sales) tax
(based on average state rate of 8.2%)
$.25 $.25 $.25
Federal fuel tax $.184 $.244 Jet fuel: $.219
Aviation gas: $.194
Coastal Protection Fund fee $.01 N/A N/A
Rates (per gallon): July 1 – December 31, 2013
Tax type Motor fuel Special fuel Aircraft fuel
DOL average cost of fuel purchases $3.61 $3.61 $3.61
State fuel tax $.375 $.375 $.11
Net use (sales) tax
(based on average state rate of 8.2%)
$.25 $.25 $.25
Federal fuel tax $.184 $.244 Jet fuel: $.219
Aviation gas: $.194
Coastal Protection Fund fee $.01 N/A N/A
Rates (per gallon): January 1 – June 30, 2013
Tax type Motor fuel Special fuel Aircraft fuel
DOL average cost of fuel purchases $3.80 $3.80 $3.80
State fuel tax $.375 $.375 $.11
Net use (sales) tax
(based on average state rate of 8.2%)
$.27 $.27 $.27
Federal fuel tax $.184 $.244 Jet fuel: $.219
Aviation gas: $.194
Coastal Protection Fund fee $.01 N/A N/A

Related laws and rules

For more information

If you have questions, please call the Fuel Tax Refunds Unit at 360.664.1838.

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