How much tax do we really pay?



ItemRateNotes
Federal personal income tax 17%
(2011 est. - 18.2%)
Top 39.6% rate. Source
State & local income taxes 10.1%
(2009 - 10.6%)
State taxes range from under 6% to over 12%. Local taxes run from zero to 2.75%. Source,  source,  source,  2009 source
Sales tax 9.7%
(2009 - 10.3%)
Figure is the average rate. State sales taxes range up to 8% and local taxes run from zero to over 5%. Source,  source,  2008 source (broken link as of 2012),  2009 source  2011 source
Social security & Medicaid 7.65% Total rate is actually 15.3% since half is paid by the employer, but we're ignoring that to be kind and to avoid being accused of being too political.
Federal corporate income tax share 3% Based on corporate taxes being approximately 1/6 of personal taxes, and that they are paid by individuals in the final analysis.
Property tax 2.5%
(2007 - 2.7%)
Yearly average actual costs range from under $200 in Alaska to almost $1900 in New Jersey. Source
Fuel/gasoline tax .5%
(2009 est. - .6%)
Approximately 23% of the 2005 gasoline price is for federal & state taxes. The federal excise tax is 18.4 cents per gallon. Per the CPI, about 6% of the average budget is for transportation. Estimated. 2010 estimate, $.45 per gallon average. Source
Other 6%+
(2009-2013 - 8%+)
Includes estate tax, fees, licenses, inflation losses, inheritance, deficit allowance, gift, and others too numerous to mention. Estimated.

Here is what happened on January 1st 2014:

Top Income Tax bracket went from 35% to 39.6%
Top Income Payroll Tax went from 37.4% to 52.2%
Capital Gains Tax went from 15 % to 28%
Dividend Tax went from 15% to 39.6%


Total tax percentage potentially paid by the above average US citizen, 2005 - 54.4%

Total tax percentage potentially paid by the above average US citizen, 2013 est. - 59.7%



Note 1: the total tax paid is closer to 43%, since the figures above do not distinguish between taxes on gross and net income, nor do they adjust for tax planning and many other factors. Note also that the Tax Foundation's numbers are closer to 30% for the actual "average" US citizen.

Note 2: Inflation effects are likely quite understated - if actual inflation is 6% and one is only earning 4%. the tax rate is not the main issue.

Note 3: A major factor that intentionally isn't covered (for political reasons) is a fuller picture of medical care and taxes. Most of health care is paid by the employer as of 2011 and results in a higher tax rate overall - we estimate it as at least 5%.

Note 4: This page is not intended to be definitive and completely accurate on tax rates and issues - to do so would be virtually impossible considering all the factors. Its primarily intended to show a fuller picture than is normally presented.


A partial list of the various ways in which citizens of the US are taxed:



Oil industry profits are less than the taxes they pay

History of Federal Individual Income Tax Rates

Income & corporate taxes by state

State tax rates





taxes paid

Source: Tax Freedom Day from the Tax Foundation




taxes, corp vs. individual