- Days left

One for you, nineteen for me- I'm the taxman.

George Harrison wrote the Beatles tune "Taxman", which has become an anthem for anti-tax activists. Ironically, even as the Beatles song finally becomes available as a digital download, a little tax may be added to its cost.

Digital entertainment had, in many states, been given a bye in taxation as part of the 'nurturing the internet' process. However, as states see their budgets strained to the breaking point, many are looking under every rock for new revenue. Smokers have had the last puff of smoke wrung out of them, the ignorant have gambling opportunities shoved in their face at every opportunity, and red light cameras are spitting out tickets like Lou Pinella spits sunflower seed shells. And still they need more.

The download tax is already in effect in a number of states, and seems bound to spread. It requires little effort on behalf of the state. The vendor is responsible for determining what taxes a buyer owes, collecting those taxes, and paying them to the state in question. And once all states start feeding from this rice bowl, they will have a strong incentive to join the music industry's war on file-sharing. Obviously, online anonymity is a serious problem for tax collectors, so it too will come under fire.

An 'iTunes Tax', as it is called, would also extend to movies, books, any digital entertainment/information you download. Given the growth of streaming content, for which we pay per iteration rather than buy to play in perpetuity, look for states to include a tax on these fees under the digital tax umbrella.

Of death and taxes, I suspect we'll be more likely to see the former drop from the ranks of the inevitable than the latter.

thanks, Engadget

Learn about investing from the comfort of your own home.

Portfolio Basics

Take the first steps to building your portfolio.

View Course »

Investment Strategies

Learn the strategies you need to build a winning portfolio

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Keeping Yourself Safe From Tax Scams Today

During tax time, there are numerous types of tax scams. These illegal schemes can result in the taxpayer being responsible for extra interest, penalties and possible criminal prosecution. Tax schemes and scams attempt to gain access to your financial information by email, telephone, fax or mail. They also may attempt to falsely collect tax you owe to the Internal Revenue Service. Using TurboTax ensures your financial information remains safe.

Health Care and Your Taxes: What's the Connection?

Your cost for Marketplace health insurance is based on the income you file on your tax return. Your reported income also determines your eligibility for the tax credits and penalties associated with Marketplace health coverage. Everyone has to have health insurance and by filing your taxes, you let the government know if you carry health insurance. The tax system acts as a way for the government to levy a penalty on those who don?t have it and to provide assistance, by means of a tax credit, to those who do.

Documents You Should Save for Tax Time

Settling your account with the Internal Revenue Service each year doesn?t need to be a frantic search for the information you need to file your tax return. Knowing what documents to have at your fingertips can help to reduce filing difficulties and possibly your tax bill.

Do The Math: Understanding Your Tax Refund

For most people, tax is collected by an employer at a rate that estimates your tax for the year. Your actual earnings and the deductions that you?re allowed to claim might cause you to pay too much tax, which leads the Internal Revenue Service to issue you a refund. "The idea behind a tax refund is quite simple," says James Windsor, a certified public accountant from Ann Arbor, Michigan. "When you pay more tax than you owe, the Internal Revenue Service returns the overpayment as your refund."

5 Tax Tips for Single Moms

If you?re a single mom filing your taxes, make use of tax credits and deductions that can help reduce your taxable income and reduce the amount of tax you pay. A number of strategies, credits and deductions can be used to reduce taxable income, and in some cases, allow tax refunds even if you didn?t pay in any taxes. When you use TurboTax, we?ll ask simple questions and handle these calculations for you.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum