Map: How long it takes each state’s residents to earn enough to pay all taxes

April 23, 2014

(Tax Foundation)

You might have missed it, but Monday was Tax Freedom Day, the day by which Americans have earned enough money to pay all taxes owed. But don’t worry, you might still have a chance to celebrate.

Though the national marker has passed, your state’s Tax Freedom Day may still be on its way. Rhode Island’s is today. Illinois’s is Saturday and California’s is next Wednesday, according to the Tax Foundation. Louisiana’s Tax Freedom Day came and went March 30. Connecticut and New Jersey’s won’t come until May 9.

Obviously, this isn’t a real thing. But the “holiday” offers a way to contextualize taxation. This year’s Tax Freedom Day is three days later than last year’s, thanks to the slow economic recovery. The anticipated 2014 tax bill is $4.5 billion, or about 30.2 percent of all income expected to be earned this year. And you can drill down even further.

It took 33 days — part of the way into Feb. 3 — for Americans to earn the equivalent of the anticipated federal income tax haul. It took an additional 27 days to earn enough to cover social insurance taxes. The remaining 50 or so days went to paying down a variety of other kinds of taxes, as shown in the chart below.

(Tax Foundation)
(Tax Foundation)

Tax Freedom Day has also been creeping later and later into the year as tax revenues have accounted for a larger and larger share of income, shown below. Check out the Tax Foundation’s page on the day for more information and data.

(Tax Foundation)
(Tax Foundation)
Niraj Chokshi reports for GovBeat, The Post's state and local policy blog.
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