Taxation is one of the most important issues faced by governments all over the world. It affects everyone, irrespective of social status or income group. A tax is any type of indirect levy or financial obligation imposed on a person by a government agency in order to finance public expenditure and government investment. Evasion of or deliberate refusal to pay tax, and penalties for tax evasion, are punishable by law around the world.
The most common type of tax is the regressive tax system, which are based on income-based taxes. These taxes are progressive in nature, meaning that the higher you are, the higher percentage of your income is taxed. The rate of this tax is fixed and is never affected by an individual’s income. In contrast, the progressive tax system provides for direct taxation of income by using certain formulas.
The major sources of indirect taxes are through sales tax and property tax. Sales tax is based on the net price of goods sold, while property tax is based on the value of real estate owned. These taxes are collected by local municipalities through income tax. However, this system has many disadvantages. For instance, sales tax is largely based on income and, as such, indirect taxes are not as equally distributed as direct taxes.
There is another system, called the proportional tax system, which imposes proportional taxation on various items. Here, every taxpayer is assessed a certain proportional share of the total annual income or gain. This share is equal to 100% in case of a married person and to zero if the taxpayer is single. The advantage of the proportional tax system is that it is simpler than the regressive system. Also, it provides for a base amount that is deducted from the total annual income to arrive at the net taxable income.
The regressive system, as the name implies, is based on income gains from any source and a graduated scale. It aims to provide tax relief to low-income and middle-income taxpayers and to ensure that no one finds himself trapped in the trap of high taxation. Unlike proportional taxes, regressive tax systems take income from dividends, interest and capital gains directly. Also, unlike proportional taxes, there is no ceiling on the portion of any income that would be exempted from the purview of the system.
Every income tax slab is subject to a cap. In other words, no income tax Assessor’s assessment can exceed the applicable limit. Some states also exempt certain incomes such as self-employment income, certain specified dividends, and some profit taxes. The taxes slab for business assets is often lower than the one for residential assets. In such cases, it is advisable to consult an expert income tax attorney.