Most & Least Taxing States 2013

By Rebecca Helmes of Bloomberg BNA - 2013-04-19T17:41:14Z

Photograph by Joel Sartore/National Geographic

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Top income tax rate: 6.84%
Sales tax: 5.5%
Property tax per capita: $1,487
Inheritance tax: See note*

Nebraska has the highest cell-phone tax in the country, at an average state-and-local rate of 18.67 percent as of July 1, 2012, according to the Tax Foundation. It ranks 16th in the nation for state and local property tax collection per capita. The income tax is also fairly high, with the top 6.84 percent rate taking effect on income above $27,000. Nebraska taxes Social Security income, although in 2013 legislators considered eliminating both income tax and the Social Security tax. Unlike the states surrounding it, Nebraska doesn’t give any tax breaks for military pensions.

*Transfer to a spouse is tax-free, as are  transfers to charitable and other organizations if certain conditions are met. Transfer to descendants and siblings are taxed at 1 percent; transfers to aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews are taxed at 13 percent. All other transfers are taxed at 18 percent.