Fuels Tax Refunds
Fuels (gasoline, diesel fuel, blended fuel, alternative fuel and aviation fuel) that are purchased in Virginia and used for specific purposes, may be eligible for a refund of all or part of the Virginia motor fuels tax that was paid. Refund applications must be received by DMV within twelve months of the date that the fuel was purchased. For the applicable fuels tax rates, refer to Fuels Tax Rates.
Fuels receipts and other documents are required for first time refund applicants, except those applicants submitting diesel vehicle refund claims. All applicants are required to maintain records to support their refund claim for a period of four years. DMV may request the fuel receipts and other documents to support your refund claim at any time. (VA Code § 58.1-2261 D). Failure to provide such supporting documents upon request may result in the denial or reversal of your refund claim(s). Photocopies, scanned copies or other electronic images of the invoices/receipts are acceptable, as long as they can be provided to DMV when requested and are legible.
IMPORTANT: Persons refunded the fuels tax under § 58.1-2259 shall be subject to the retail sales and use tax in Chapter 6 (§ 58.1-600 et seq) of the Code of VA unless such taxes are specially exempt under § 58.1-609.1.
Types of Refunds
Virginia Motor Fuel law lists fuel uses eligible for refund. A few categories of fuel uses that may be eligible for refunds are listed below. To view the full list of eligible categories, refer to Fuel Uses Eligible for Refunds.
- Hunger Relief: Fuel used in vehicles owned by non-profit, tax exempt, 501(c)(3) entities organized for the main purpose of providing hunger relief services or food to the needy. Use the section labeled ‘Other’ on form TS 216 or apply online.
- Diesel Vehicle: Fuel used in a diesel passenger car, pickup or panel truck or a truck with a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 pounds or less. Use form FT 226 or apply online.
- Agricultural/Horticultural Uses: Fuel used for agricultural or horticultural purposes in unlicensed vehicles and unlicensed equipment and other eligible fuel uses permitted by statute. Use form TS 216A) or apply online.
- Boats or Watercraft: Fuel used in boats or watercraft. Use form TS 217 or apply online.
- Bulk Fuels Exported to Another State: Bulk fuels purchased with the Virginia fuels tax included and transported or delivered to a destination outside of Virginia. Use form TS 219 or apply online.
- Taxis: Fuel used in the operation of taxis that have a valid operating authority at the time the fuel was purchased. Use form TS 221 or apply online.
- Common Carriers of Passengers: Fuel used by common carriers of passengers that have a valid operating authority for regular route service. Use form TS 225 or apply online.
- Non-Highway Equipment/Uses: Non-highway equipment and other eligible fuel uses permitted by statute. For further information, refer to the "Explanation of Fuel Use" section in the instructions on form TS 216 or apply online.
Requirement for Receipts
First time refund applicants; except applicants submitting diesel vehicle refund claims, are required to submit fuel receipts/tickets/invoices to DMV with their claim. There are also certain refund types that require the fuel receipts/invoices, bulk fuel disbursement list, vehicle list, or other supporting documents to be submitted with the refund claim. In some instances, the refund system will prompt users when this information is required. There may be times when DMV notifies the applicant to provide fuel receipts or other documents in order to process the refund. If you submit a paper form, the instructions on the back indicate when supporting documents are required to be submitted.
DMV may request fuel receipts or other documents in order to process the refund or may request such after the refund has been paid. Failure to provide the requested information will result in denial or your refund or reversal of a refund that was previously paid. (VA Code (§ 58.1-2261 D).
Applicants must retain the fuel receipts, paid ticket, invoice, or other documents to support the information on the application for a period of four years in case of an investigation. (VA Code § 58.1-2261) All applications for fuels tax refunds require the applicant to certify the validity and accuracy of the contents submitted. All fuel receipts must contain the following information:
- Exact date of purchase, which cannot exceed 12 months from the date DMV receives the application for refund;
- Seller's name and Virginia location address from which the fuel was purchased;
- Number of gallons of fuel purchased (each purchase must be for 5 gallons or more);
- Type of fuel purchased;
- Amount paid for fuel; and
- Purchaser's name (for bulk deliveries only).
NOTE: Fuel receipts that are not legible will not be paid.
Completing the Application
To receive a larger refund, accumulate fuel receipts and apply for the total gallons of your accumulated receipts. Tax rates in Virginia may fluctuate every six months therefore the refund period must be separated for January - June and July - December to ensure refunds are paid at the correct rate. The fuel receipts must not exceed twelve months from the date the refund claim is received by DMV.
You may submit your application for a fuels tax refund by mail or online. Online submission allows you to submit and track the status of your refund(s) at your convenience and reduces processing time so that you will receive your refund sooner than if submitted by mail.
Applications submitted by mail should be sent to:
- Department of Motor Vehicles
- Tax Services Refund Section
- P. O. Box 27422
- Richmond, Virginia 23269-7422