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Overwhelming Support for Taxpayers Giving the Least They Can

Taxes at home poll
Cassandra Hubbart, DailyFinance
Here's a classic of unsurprising survey results: A strong majority of Americans support their fellow citizens' doing everything they can within the law to minimize their tax obligations, according to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll.

Eighty-five percent of respondents say they approve of people trying to pay the lowest taxes legally allowable; 56 percent approve strongly. Thirteen percent disapprove.

More than half of Americans – 56 percent – view the federal tax system unfavorably. But the agency charged with enforcing the rules of that system came out surprisingly well: 49 percent say they see the IRS favorably, while 48 percent take the opposite view.

Among those who tend to give their enthusiastic assent to keeping one's tax bill low are Republicans, conservatives, older adults and college graduates.

As the results suggest, support for using the system to one's advantage doesn't necessarily entail support for the system itself. In a poll conduced last month, Americans favored limiting deductions for higher-income taxpayers 56 to 38 percent.

So do it as long as it's legal, all you second-home mortgage deduction-takers, but don't assume your fellow citizens think it ought to stay that way.
poll results
ABC News

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Cities with the Lowest Tax Rates

The total amount of tax you pay reaches far beyond what you owe the federal government. Depending on where you live, most likely you're required to pay additional taxes, including property and sales tax. The disparity between the amount of tax you pay in a low-tax city and that in a high-tax city can be dramatic. Living in any of these 10 cities could save you a bundle, although the exact amount may fluctuate based on your income and lifestyle choices.

Cities with the Highest Tax Rates

Much ado is made in the press about federal tax brackets, but cities can carry a tax bite of their own. Even if you live in a state that has no income tax, your city may levy a variety of taxes that could eat away the entire benefit of living in an income tax-free state, including property taxes, sales taxes and auto taxes. Consider all the costs before you move to one of these cities, and understand that rates may change based on your family's income level.

Great Ways to Get Charitable Tax Deductions

Generally, when you give money to a charity, you can use the amount of that donation as a deduction on your tax return. However, not all charities qualify as tax-deductible organizations. While there are many types of charities, they must all meet certain criteria to be classified by the IRS as tax-deductible organizations. There are legitimate tax-deductible organizations in many popular categories, such as those listed below.

A Freelancer's Guide to Taxes

Freelancing certainly has its benefits, but it can result in a few complications come tax time. The Internal Revenue Service considers freelancers to be self-employed, so if you earn income as a freelancer you must file your taxes as a business owner. While you can take additional deductions if you are self-employed, you'll also face additional taxes in the form of the self-employment tax. Here are things to consider as a freelancer when filing your taxes.

Tax Deductions for Voluntary Interest Payments on Student Loans

Most taxpayers who pay interest on student loans can take a tax deduction for the expense ? and you can do this regardless of whether you itemize tax deductions on your return. The rules for claiming the deduction are the same whether the interest payments were required or voluntary.

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Mark Lowery

I am not surprised, as I would think most Americans would support trying to legally figure out how to pay the least amount of taxes. That's natural. What is the problem is people who scheme, skirting the edges or going beyond the edges of what is legal, and which most Americans disdain and would not and do not do, and those who help them to do so such as attorneys, CPAs, accountants, bookkeepers, and other, and which makes those who do not do so and stay within legal bounds all the more frustrated and angry at a system that is so pervasively complex and obtuse in many regards which allows for that to occur all too frequently.

April 12 2013 at 1:33 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

There is a vast and important difference between tax avoidance and tax evasion. It is the right and privilege of every American to avoid paying every penny of tax legally possible, regardless of economic status.

April 12 2013 at 12:23 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

gee i am surprised people don't want to pay more then that required.......the others i would like to sell my car

April 11 2013 at 10:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

sounds like this poll included some working people

April 11 2013 at 10:46 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

That is only normal. But the big mouths that say others shold pay more are the ones that pay the least. And the big mouths like Buffett have been fighting their taxes in court for years but want others to pay more. The man is just another bad liberal joke

April 11 2013 at 10:22 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply

The less tax paid the less spending self serving burearcrats can waste.

April 11 2013 at 8:28 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

It comes down to: "I want the pothole in the road in front of my house filled, but I don't want to pay for it." The USA is the only country in the world that fails to teach its citizens economics and political science. Young people grow up without a clue. All they know is what they learned about Santa Claus.

April 11 2013 at 7:52 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to freeetob's comment

there are more than adequate tax dollars collected to pay for roads etc just from gasoline taxes. The problem is that those taxes are diverted to other uses.

Most americans do understand economics, that's why they don't believe that everthing they earn belongs to the government except for what the government allows them to keep.

April 11 2013 at 9:33 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to knarf714's comment

no. most americans don't understand economics, or history or any idea of doing things for the common good. like paying taxes to pay for things we ALL use.

April 12 2013 at 12:13 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down

So if the rich do it then it's evil? This country is screwed up

April 11 2013 at 7:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This has always been the attitude in America. Supreme court justice Oliver Wendell Holmes formalized it in the late 19th or early 20 th century by saying it is the duty of taxpayers to pay no more than required by law.

April 11 2013 at 7:37 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Lower taxes, more honesty, higher taxes, more cheaters..................re: Greece

April 11 2013 at 7:35 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply