The Dreaded Paper Trail

Topic 22304 | Page 1

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Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

I need some advice on gathering paperwork to meet guidelines (some federal, some company) for proving a few necessary things...

First, my driving record...

It's spotless. But my recruiter had HireRight run my name and my driving record looks like I just got my license six months ago (because that's when I renewed my license.) Obviously, it shows up with nothing to report under the violations section. But I've had to send off to Columbus to get my application history with the BMV and some other comprehensive records just to prove I've had my license for longer than my last renewal date. I also got a letter form my current auto insurance agent stating that they've covered me since 2012 without any crimes or incidents being reported to them (not sure if that will help or not.) But I'm wondering if there's anything else I can gather and take with me just to prove I've had a license, much less a clean license. (In retrospect, I would have made it a point a few years ago to get a speeding ticket or something had I known this just because it would have at least created a record of me having a license a few years back!)

Second, my employment history...

Well, in 2008 I started back to college. I wound up pursuing two degrees at the same time, and was in school until around the end of 2012. That's easy enough to prove (transcripts, etc.) However, in 2013, I started a business and ran that for a few years until 2017. Here's where the fun begins... My company was an LLC, so my incorporation papers, etc., are all public record and freely availalbe via the Ohio Secretary of State's website. However, taxes are a whole different matter.

An LLC is an entity created by state statute. Depending on elections made by the LLC and the number of members, the IRS will treat an LLC either as a corporation, partnership, or as part of the owner's tax return (a "disregarded entity"). Specifically, a domestic LLC with at least two members is classified as a partnership for federal income tax purposes unless it files Form 8832 and affirmatively elects to be treated as a corporation. And an LLC with only one member is treated as an entity disregarded as separate from its owner for income tax purposes (but as a separate entity for purposes of employment tax and certain excise taxes), unless it files Form 8832 and affirmatively elects to be treated as a corporation.

And...

If a single-member LLC does not elect to be treated as a corporation, the LLC is a "disregarded entity," and the LLC's activities should be reflected on its owner's federal tax return.

Both quotes are from an IRS webpage, the bolding and emphasis are my own: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/single-member-limited-liability-companies

So... I can't show anyone the exact "tax records" that most companies seem to want. My wife and I filed jointly because that is what the IRS told me to do as the single-owner of an LLC.

Now, state tax records are something else, altogether. I had to file business taxes with Ohio twice a year. But recruiters from two other companies said they couldn't help me if I wasn't able to produce the tax records they needed to prove my self-employment. No matter for that (their loss, not mine!) However, I am set to hit CRST in just a few weeks and I hear that their records department can be, errrr, enthusiastic when it comes to paperwork requirements.

Honesty is on my side, so I've got no worries and nothing to hide. But I'd really prefer to have everything I possibly can in my hand when I take my shot at this - I REALLY WANT A CHANCE.

So, what else can I do to prove that I had a business and was self-employed?

I can bring with me my business license, my business bank account records, my incorporation paperwork, my federal EIN, my state tax records, and even provide verification on a state website that I cannot possibly manipulate or alter. But all that wasn't good enough for at least two companies, so what else can I do?

Bmv:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Dave Reid's Comment
member avatar

I had the same issue when I got into trucking.

They should need either a W2 or 1099 issued by your LLC to you, and a copy of those joint tax returns you mentioned. If you had an attorney and/or CPA, letter(s) from them attesting to your employment would also be good.

I need some advice on gathering paperwork to meet guidelines (some federal, some company) for proving a few necessary things...

First, my driving record...

It's spotless. But my recruiter had HireRight run my name and my driving record looks like I just got my license six months ago (because that's when I renewed my license.) Obviously, it shows up with nothing to report under the violations section. But I've had to send off to Columbus to get my application history with the BMV and some other comprehensive records just to prove I've had my license for longer than my last renewal date. I also got a letter form my current auto insurance agent stating that they've covered me since 2012 without any crimes or incidents being reported to them (not sure if that will help or not.) But I'm wondering if there's anything else I can gather and take with me just to prove I've had a license, much less a clean license. (In retrospect, I would have made it a point a few years ago to get a speeding ticket or something had I known this just because it would have at least created a record of me having a license a few years back!)

Second, my employment history...

Well, in 2008 I started back to college. I wound up pursuing two degrees at the same time, and was in school until around the end of 2012. That's easy enough to prove (transcripts, etc.) However, in 2013, I started a business and ran that for a few years until 2017. Here's where the fun begins... My company was an LLC, so my incorporation papers, etc., are all public record and freely availalbe via the Ohio Secretary of State's website. However, taxes are a whole different matter.

double-quotes-start.png

An LLC is an entity created by state statute. Depending on elections made by the LLC and the number of members, the IRS will treat an LLC either as a corporation, partnership, or as part of the owner's tax return (a "disregarded entity"). Specifically, a domestic LLC with at least two members is classified as a partnership for federal income tax purposes unless it files Form 8832 and affirmatively elects to be treated as a corporation. And an LLC with only one member is treated as an entity disregarded as separate from its owner for income tax purposes (but as a separate entity for purposes of employment tax and certain excise taxes), unless it files Form 8832 and affirmatively elects to be treated as a corporation.

double-quotes-end.png

And...

double-quotes-start.png

If a single-member LLC does not elect to be treated as a corporation, the LLC is a "disregarded entity," and the LLC's activities should be reflected on its owner's federal tax return.

double-quotes-end.png

Both quotes are from an IRS webpage, the bolding and emphasis are my own: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/single-member-limited-liability-companies

So... I can't show anyone the exact "tax records" that most companies seem to want. My wife and I filed jointly because that is what the IRS told me to do as the single-owner of an LLC.

Now, state tax records are something else, altogether. I had to file business taxes with Ohio twice a year. But recruiters from two other companies said they couldn't help me if I wasn't able to produce the tax records they needed to prove my self-employment. No matter for that (their loss, not mine!) However, I am set to hit CRST in just a few weeks and I hear that their records department can be, errrr, enthusiastic when it comes to paperwork requirements.

Honesty is on my side, so I've got no worries and nothing to hide. But I'd really prefer to have everything I possibly can in my hand when I take my shot at this - I REALLY WANT A CHANCE.

So, what else can I do to prove that I had a business and was self-employed?

I can bring with me my business license, my business bank account records, my incorporation paperwork, my federal EIN, my state tax records, and even provide verification on a state website that I cannot possibly manipulate or alter. But all that wasn't good enough for at least two companies, so what else can I do?

Bmv:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

I had the same issue when I got into trucking.

They should need either a W2 or 1099 issued by your LLC to you, and a copy of those joint tax returns you mentioned. If you had an attorney and/or CPA, letter(s) from them attesting to your employment would also be good.

I did the inital filing and bookkeeping myself. However, my registered agent was an attorney! I need to get hold of them and see if they will provide a document for me. Great advice, thank you!

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Retired Army's Comment
member avatar

I decided to drive for uber this year to pass time. I had renewed my DL 4 months prior and when they ran my record it came back like yours. I had to go to the DMV , and get a written letter from the DMV that said I had a license since 2008 with no violations or issues. Maybe that is something thst u can look into.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

I decided to drive for uber this year to pass time. I had renewed my DL 4 months prior and when they ran my record it came back like yours. I had to go to the DMV , and get a written letter from the DMV that said I had a license since 2008 with no violations or issues. Maybe that is something thst u can look into.

Yup! Had to send off for official documentation from the head office. If that don't do the trick, I'll start pursuing the letter for sure. Thanks for pointing that out!

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

PJ's Comment
member avatar

Every state has 2 driving records on people. One is the public record which is the most recent. The other most folks don’t realize exists is your historical record. The latter is what you need.

Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

Every state has 2 driving records on people. One is the public record which is the most recent. The other most folks don’t realize exists is your historical record. The latter is what you need.

Oh yes! Hoping that's the one I filled out the form for. Odd, I had to mail the form, so they could process the included payment, but they offer to email the record when it's processed... Well, at least they're halfway into the 21st century!

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

Respectfully, if you were the sole owner of the LLC and you filed joint tax returns with your wife, how do you NOT have copies of tax returns?

I owned my own businesses for 13 years prior to going into trucking. Some business records have to be kept for several years. Heck, I’m just now destroying business receipts from more than ten years ago.

Please know you will need to keep records as a truck driver. In some cases, you will transflo bills of lading, but need to keep those hard copies in case the company needs them.

Get all the back records you can and keep them in a safe place. Make copies if you’re afraid one may get lost.

If a company requires certain records AND you want to work for them, provide what they ask.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

Respectfully, if you were the sole owner of the LLC and you filed joint tax returns with your wife, how do you NOT have copies of tax returns?

Sorry, I think I misled you. I have copies of the joint returns. And I have copies of all the busibess paperwork i ever generated. But none of that paperwork was satisfactory to two different companies.

Also, because was a sole proprietor, there was never an issue with me comingling business and personal funds as long as I had records for all business-related transactions so Ohio taxes could be audited by the state if necessary.

Therefore, no 1099 or other W2 statements exist. Just banking records, personal tax returns, and state tax records (because Ohio does insist on separate taxes even if the feds do not.

The issue isn't a lack of paperwork - there's an abundance of that. It's that I didn't plan on being a trucker 5 years ago, so I didn't structure my business or taxes with an eye to verifying things that the state and feds would find acceptable but a trucking company wouldn't.

(Typing this on my phone, so please forgive any misspelling, etc.)

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

Jeremy, if you’ve done everything you can and that still isn’t good enough, maybe those companies are doing you a favor by taking themselves out of the running for your services. You probably saw in business, some customers are just not worth the trouble.

Maybe the picture (of where you’re supposed to be) is becoming clearer.

Good luck!

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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