Attention, owner-operators: is it your money?

From 1988 to 1995, Alabama collected a fuel marker decal fee of $12 per year per truck from all trucks operating in, but not based in, Alabama. The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association filed suit against the state in 1991, and the courts agreed with OOIDA that the fuel marker decal fee was illegal and that all who paid the fee should have their money refunded to them. In this case, truckers are getting refunds of the entire amounts they paid in, plus interest. The average refund is $18 per truck, per year.The refund process has been underway for some time now, and most of you who were the "taxpayers of record" on the Alabama tax rolls have already received your refunds. At present, requests for refunds from many large motor carriers are under consideration. These carriers are the taxpayers of record, but OOIDA has no way of verifying which carriers leased owner- operators during that time, and whether owner-operators were charged back for the cost of the Alabama decals.

If you were leased to a motor carrier between 1988 and 1995, and were charged back for the cost of your Alabama fuel marker decal, you are entitled to a refund. In order to assert your claim, you must write to each motor carrier you were leased to for the period and supply them with the dates of your lease and your current address. Send the letter(s) certified, return receipt requested, if possible. You should also send a copy of your letter(s) to OOIDA, 311 R. D. Mize Road, Grain Valley, MO 64029. Your input is the best way to ensure that these motor carriers don't get the opportunity to put your money in their bank accounts.