Study: Washington DC Has the Highest Federal Tax Burden in the US

FOSTER CITY, Calif., March 16, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- According to new research by personal finance website, residents of Washington D.C. confront the highest overall federal tax burden in the nation. Arkansas residents encounter the country's lowest overall federal tax burden.

This analysis examined all 50 states' and the District of Columbia's ranking on two metrics: The first was the amount the state pays in federal income taxes per capita, and the second was an equally-weighted calculation of effective federal income tax rates across income brackets. The equal weighting was meant to avoid skewing the state's average tax rate in accordance with its relative wealth.

Washington DC earned its ranking by placing second in both per capita taxes paid ($8,820.13) and the equally weighted rate category (12.32 percent) for the 2012 tax year, the most recent year for which data is available. Arkansas took its position by paying the fourth-lowest amount of taxes per capita ($3,100.71) and having the fifth-lowest equally weighted tax rate (10.81 percent).

Here are the 10 states with the highest overall federal income tax burden, according to the study:

1. Washington DC
2. Massachusetts
3. Connecticut
4. North Dakota
5. (tie) Alaska
5. (tie) New Jersey
7. New York
8. (tie) Illinois
8. (tie) Texas
10. Pennsylvania

Here are the 10 states with the lowest overall federal income tax burden, according to the study:

1. Arkansas
2. Idaho
3. South Carolina
4. Mississippi
5. Hawaii
6. (tie) Utah
6. (tie) Oregon
6. (tie) Kentucky
9. North Carolina
10. Montana

On a national level, the study found that people earning more than $100,000 paid an effective tax rate nearly three times that of the rest of the population.

"A lot of resentment of high earners in recent years has been based on the implication that they aren't contributing their fair share," says Richard Barrington, CFA, senior financial analyst for and author of the study. "If you look at tax rates though, they certainly are shouldering a heavier burden to go along with their higher earnings."

For more details on the survey, please see the full feature on and the full 50-state rankings.


The study used 2012 tax data from the Internal Revenue Service and population data from the U.S. Census Bureau to form its rankings.

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CONTACT: Alex Bryant 212.863.4753Source:QuinStreet