The information in this article is up to date through tax year 2019 (taxes filed in 2020).
State tax laws can be complicated. For example, did you know that Hawaii charges a 4% excise tax on tourist weddings? Here are 8 of the most interesting state tax laws you’ll find in the US.
Maine’s “Blueberry Tax”
According to state laws, anyone who grows, buys, sells, or handles wild blueberries pays three quarters of a cent per pound for tax. The $1.5 million in revenue from this tax has been used for research and educational programs to improve the crop’s growth.
Hawaii’s “Exceptional Trees Deduction”
If you are into gardening in Hawaii, you can deduct up to $3,000 for maintaining your trees. To qualify, the tree must have historical and cultural significance. The state has over 1,000 “exceptional trees.”
Maryland’s “Flush Tax”
Since 2004, all households get charged an extra $2.50 on their monthly water bill. The tax has produced over $370 million since 2004. The extra money has helped the state develop better technological processes for making water cleaner.
Arkansas’“Damaged Vehicle Credit”
It’s no secret that Arkansas is prone to extreme weather. Consequently, if you pay taxes in Arkansas and your new or “new to you” vehicle is severely damaged in a catastrophic event, you could be entitled to a sales tax credit from the state.
South Carolina’s “Premarital Counseling Credit”
If you plan on getting married in South Carolina, you are eligible for a $50 credit for receiving pre-marital counseling. You are eligible for the credit as long as the counseling is done by a certified clergy member and you receive a marriage license during that year.
New Mexico’s “Long Life Exemption”
If you are over 100 years of age and not claimed as a dependent, you are exempt from income tax in New Mexico.
New Jersey’s “Nontaxables”
When you make a purchase in the state of New Jersey, you’ll have to pay the state sales tax of 6.625%. That is, unless the things you buy items are on the state’s list of nontaxable goods and services. Clothing, real estate, and unprepared foods all make the list of items that aren’t subject to sales tax in NJ.
Missouri’s “Bachelor Tax”
It’s a real thing – but it’s no reason to rush to the alter. If you’re a single guy in Missouri between the age of 21 and 50, your state will charge you $1 a year in taxes just for being a bachelor. It’s an old law that hasn’t changed since the 19th century.