Delayed Filing for EV Federal Tax Credits

Delayed Filing for EV Federal Tax Credits


The Form 8911 we use to claim the 30% Alternative Fuel Vehicle Refueling Property Credit and the Form 8936 we use to claim the $7500 Qualified Plug-in Electric Drive Motor Vehicle Credit for the 2012 tax year will not be available for filing until late February or early March 2013. We'll have to wait a little longer for that refund :(

olanmills | 14 janvier 2013

Dang, that sucks

Brian H | 14 janvier 2013

It's called "cash management". Collect Receivables early, dispense Payables late.

anpahwa | 11 février 2013

Very informative, thanks. My CPA and I were going crazy trying to figure out why the electronic forms weren't allowing the full $7500 credit. We will hold off until everything is updated...

Velo1 | 5 mars 2013

I just received my tax return from my accountant and she used Form 8936, but it only allowed a $2,500 Federal Tax Credit. Sounds like I need to have her re-do them as soon as the $7500 credit will be allowed, yes?

olanmills | 5 mars 2013

Well, unless she was using software and/or instructions that were in correct, she should have been able to correctly add the $7500 credit at any time. Form 8936 has been available for a while, and as far as I know it hasn't changed.

What has changed is that the IRS said that they would not process tax returns that included this form, but instead would hold them and process them at a later date. So you could still mail them in if you wanted to. The IRS also would not accept e-file for returns with this form until a later date.

olanmills | 5 mars 2013


As ghillair posted in the other thread, the IRS is now accepting all returns:

However, Turbo Tax still hasn't caught up yet, so I can't e-file just yet.

ghillair | 5 mars 2013


Two items. One did you buy a Tesla or is this for someother EV vehicle. They are some limits at $2500 for some vehicles. Two the credit is limited to the total tax owed (line 46 on the 1040).

If you bought a Tesla and line 46 is greater than $2500 I believe you are entitled to more.

ghillair | 5 mars 2013

Velo1 and all

Forget my previous post.

I just reviewed the new 2012 8936 form. It has changed from previous years. Probably part of the last meinute tax changes past 12/31/2012 signed by the President on 1/1/2013.

The form clearly states credit limited to $2500 per vehicle.

Velo1 I am afraid your accountant is correct and you are going to have a lot of fellow Tesla owners very unhappy about their tax returns.

If you want to look at the form and instructions:;jsessionid=...

ghillair | 5 mars 2013

The complete link didn't come thru.\, goto this link and find 8936

olanmills | 5 mars 2013

ghillair, you are mistaken. Most people who purchase a Model S will receive a $7500 tax credit:

-On form 8936, check Line 4.

-You will see that you are instructed to "enter the tentative credit" if the car has four wheels, like the Model S or Leaf.

-In the instructions section, you will see that you are to refer to to find the tentative credit based on the car.

-It's $7500 for both the Leaf and the Model S

-Part II of the form, the part that I think you focused on to see the $2500 limit, is for people who will use the vehicle for business. Everyone else will skip that section entirely.

-On Line 15, you will see that it says that if you skipped Part II, then enter the amount from Line 4, in our case, $7500

-You will see that it also says to ignore Lines 16 and 17 if the EV is a four wheeled vehicle. Line 17 is another place that it mentions the $2500 limit, but we don't care about that.

-If you have a four wheeled vehicle, you are also instructed to enter the amount from Line 15 onto Line 18. So again, that's $7500.

-The remaining lines have to do with figuring in your other tax liabilities and credits. Basically, it's just to calculate whether or not you are eligible for the full $7500 credit. If the amount of tax you would owe on your income is not at least $7500, then you will not get the full $7500 tax credit.

Most people who buy a Model S will get a $7500 tax credit. And I kept it out of the notes above just not to confuse the matter, but if you read the instructions closely, you will see that even if you use the Model S for business purposes, and must therefore work on Part II of the form, the $2500 limit does not apply. You will still be eligible for a credit of up to $7500 (depending on other factors).

olanmills | 5 mars 2013

TL;DR version:

The $2500 limit is only for EVs that aren't "real cars", cars that only have two or three wheels, or four wheeled cars that allow travel at low speeds.

Other cars are eligible for credits based on the info at this page here:

As you will see, in general, if a vehicle is like a "real car" and it has a pure EV driving mode, then you can get a tax credit of up to $7500, and most people who buy these cars will indeed qualify for $7500.

olanmills | 5 mars 2013

Up there, it should have said:

The $2500 limit is only for EVs that aren't "real cars", cars that only have two or three wheels, or four wheeled cars that only allow travel at low speeds.

olanmills | 5 mars 2013

@Velo1, I also thought I'd add that if your accountant is not familiar with Form 8936, and she just glanced at it, then it's easy for her to make the mistake of assuming that the credit is only $2500. However, if she reads the form and follows the instructions correctly, she'll see that you should get a credit of $7500.

ghillair | 6 mars 2013


You are correct. the $2500 limit is new this year on line 10, but that section of the form is for business use. If no business use the $7,500 is still available. There are limits based on battery size but all Teslas qualify for the max.

stevenmaifert | 6 mars 2013

Forms 8911 and 8936 will be available for e-filing on 03/14/13 at 2:00 p.m. EST. Ref:

stevenmaifert | 6 mars 2013

If your tax professional is clueless regarding the $7500 Qualified Plug-in Electric Drive Motor Vehicle Credit for Model S, direct them here:

Schlermie | 16 mars 2013

I just did this in TurboTax today and got the full $7500.