Find Laws Find Lawyers Free Legal Forms USA State Laws
Home » Find Laws » Tax Laws » Tax Law » Understanding the Tax Law

Understanding the Tax Law

Tax Law

In order to provide public services such as police enforcement, health benefits, and public schooling, individual states must enforce tax laws on its citizens. The Federal Government has upheld the right for states to tax its citizens since the beginning of America's history.

States generate revenue through various medians:aid given by the Federal government and through administering taxation, licenses, and fees. The most common types of local tax laws that states impose are:sales tax, corporate income tax, property tax, personal income tax and miscellaneous taxes. Each set of tax law is unique and provides a stream of revenue for the state. Contact tax lawyers for legal advice and assistance.

State sales tax

A tax levied on the purchase of goods and services. In addition to the sticker price, a sales tax is imposed on the item. Not all states impose sales taxes on goods or services, but those that do use a regressive tax system and charge a flat percentage rate. Tax laws regarding sales tax include two different variations-vendor tax and a consumer tax

A vendor tax is imposed on the individual making the sale of the good or service. This tax law is imposed because some states feel as though it is a privilege to do business in their jurisdiction. The vendor tax is not taxed per item sold but rather on the total amount of items sold in a given time frame.

A consumer tax is placed on the purchaser of the item. In addition to the price of good or service a buyer will pay an additional percentage to the sticker price. The proceeds taken from the consumer tax will be delivered by the vendor to the state's government.

Personal income tax

Currently 41 states impose a personal income tax on their residents. Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming do not include personal income into their tax laws. States that do require the tax use both a graduated income tax and a flat rate. One must figure out his taxable income to establish the starting point. Deductions vary based on state to state, knowledge of your individual state's tax laws is imperative.

Corporate income tax

Most states enforce a corporate income tax, which charges businesses an income taxes similar to that of an individual. Tax laws vary based on state for corporations-some use graduated methods while others impose a flat rate. States attempt to entice new businesses to operate in their jurisdiction by including incentives or by lowering their corporate income tax.

Property Tax

The tax laws that provide the most revenue for a state are most commonly property taxes. An individual will be taxed annually for the property owned, based on the land's value or a percentage of the value. The state government establishes the guidelines for the amount of property taxes required, but the individual pays the local county or town in which the property is located. All 50 states have unique tax laws in regards to property tax. Some states permit local communities to tax real property, or property attached to the land. Examples include, homes, apartments, condominiums, or factories. Other states impose tax laws that allow local governments to tax personal property. Examples include jewelry, boats, furniture, airplanes, artwork, or cars.

Miscellaneous tax

In addition to property tax, sales tax, and corporate income tax, states have the ability to alter their tax laws to include taxes on fuel and inheritances. All 50 states have some form of fuel tax, which effects the purchase of liquid gasoline and diesel fuels. Tax laws on fuel vary from state to state but all of them are a cents per gallon tax, and are paid to the distributors.

The gas tax is considered to be a "user tax." Since money is required to maintain roads taxes will be imposed on those who drive on them. User taxes are paid for by those who benefit from the service in which the tax pays for. Another example of a user tax is the tax placed on cigarettes. Individuals who use vehicles to protect or maintain the community are exempt from this tax law.

Inheritance taxes are imposed on the transfer of property after the owner's death. This state tax law is similar to a personal income tax, where the state will determine whether a graduated method or flat rate will be imposed. An estate tax, which is administered under federal tax law is not to be confused with inheritance taxes. Estate taxes are imposed on the entire estate of the individual whereas an inheritance tax focuses on the transfer of property

NEXT: A Full Background on the IRS

Related Articles

Link To This Page


Find an Tax Lawyer
Find an CA Lawyer
Guide to Finding a Lawyer