Today is the deadline in the US for filing your tax return. It’s a strange notion for me being from Ireland. In Ireland everybody get’s a PPS number to legally work (those who work legally that is, at least count there was over 8 million registered for PPS numbers and less than 5 million in the country) it’s kind of like a social security number only you don’t get it as a child, you register for it when entering the work force. Your PPS is then used for your tax purposes e.g. Ensuring you get your tax credits and tracking your tax paid. When you get paid in Ireland the tax is taken out before you get paid. You are entitled to some tax breaks based on your situation e.g. tax back on rent paid, rent relief, if you have certain chronic illnesses you get money towards your aide etc. It’s a very generous system and is pretty good to the people of Ireland. However in Ireland you need to educate yourself on what you can apply for. It’s up to you to go claiming it back. You need to figure out what forms you need and what info you need to give. If you go to a tax office they won’t just give you the docs that apply to you or even tell you what does. You need to ask.
From what I see in America. You have to file a tax return. You need to claim your tax back on what you are able to (e.g. medical expenses) by April 15th. There’s a level of trust involved. The most important thing is the status you claim. I honestly did not do my homework well enough before coming here, It would not have put me off knowing what I know now but here’s the deal. I am a single male and I’m in one of the higher income tax brackets as it is here. I came here having read stats that turned out to be based on averages, which obviously turned were lower than I am now paying . Don’t get me wrong, it’s much much less than I was paying at home. But still. There’s people getting paid more than or as much as me here that have kids, a wife and a mortgage that because they fall under a different status get taxed much less than me.
Interestingly there’s some cases where people can be exempt from paying tax for a year or longer based on their current situation. You could seemingly put this down on your tax form at the beginning of the year and not pay any taxes for the year. You then file your tax return and it’s up to the IRS to figure it out. Which seems a bit crazy to me, people could be claiming they earn less money than they do or that their situation is different to how it is. It seems a bit backwards in my opinion.
People also pay a home owners tax..sound familiar. Only it’s not just 100 euro. They pay a lot more. It’s comparitive to the English council taxes. If you want to live in an area with good schools and services, you will have to pay higher home owners taxes as those taxes are going towards your local community. That’s a pretty interesting setup to me. I wonder how such a thing would work in Ireland. Where would the higher taxes be?
I have to pay a registration fee for my car which is pretty low it’s about 200 dollars for the first time registration and something like 20 per year afterwards. It could be a bit more for a newer car but as far as I can see, it’s a lot lower than the car tax system at home. In most states there’s toll booths which pays towards the up keep of the major roads. In Arizona there’s no toll booths. So I got lucky there.
I am paying towards a social pension fund for myself and don’t have a choice. Which is probably actually a good thing. I was originally pretty pissed off when I saw it but it’s good that the government is in a way making you pay for your future upkeep if you live long enough to retire. I wouldn’t be as much of a burden on the tax payers when it’s from my own tax payments. The more successful I am here, the more in a pension I will be entitled to.
Not really sure which tax system I prefer working under as of yet. I guess because I worked in Ireland for so much longer, I got a bit warn out there. It seems like the divide in taxes was a lot bigger there but it’s not really. The poor here don’t pay much tax. The middle do pay taxes and go home with less than the wealthy but the wealthy here pay a lot more tax. If I work overtime here I don’t get an extra hit, which I like. I don’t know if anything happened here like in Ireland with the Bullshit USC that was put on us there. Remember the temporary tax! That just got merged and called USC and made permanent. This whole craic with having to have the water meter installed. What a joke. The septic tanks fiasco. I was pretty fed up with car tax in Ireland too. It seemed illogical, it punished people who couldn’t afford a car newer than 2007 even if their car had the same emission levels as their 2008 model but then that’s what we get for having the Greens with power.