10 Stupid Arguments For Not Paying Your Income Taxes

stupid with taxesThe IRS hears so many of the same ridiculous arguments by people claiming they are not liable to pay income tax that it has posted a 64-page document on its website called “The Truth About Frivolous Tax Arguments.” It sets out the basis for each argument, and then meticulously sets the record straight, complete with citations from the Internal Revenue Code, the U.S. Constitution, and examples of actual cases (all of which were decided against the frivolous arguer).

Those who make stupid arguments in order to evade paying taxes – or try to promote these schemes to others – run the risk of incurring civil and criminal penalties, including fines up to $250,000 and imprisonment for up to five years.

Below are ten of the recurring tax evasion arguments that never win.

I don’t have to file an income tax return and pay taxes – it’s voluntary: Oh come on, if it were optional, none of us would pay taxes. Yet some argue that IRS publications note that our tax system is “voluntary.” This means only that taxpayers calculate the amount of their taxes and fill out the forms, rather than have the government do it for them. The requirements to file an income tax return and pay are not voluntary.

My wages, tips, and other compensation are not income: Many of us feel that we are underpaid for our work. But it’s a weak argument that when you “exchange” your labor for money, there is no taxable gain. The law is clear that for federal income tax purposes, “gross income” means all income from whatever source derived, and includes compensation for your personal services.

I’m not a citizen of the U.S.; I’m a citizen of a particular state: OK, so you’re proud of your home state. However, you can’t renounce your Social Security Number and U.S. citizenship in favor of state citizenship and then claim you don’t have any obligation to pay federal income tax. Even more ludicrous is the argument that even though you were born here, you were never a U.S. citizen because you were born a citizen of a sovereign state.

Only federal government employees owe tax, not private sector employees: You won’t try this frivolous argument if you work for Uncle Sam. It is based on a misinterpretation of the Internal Revenue Code that “employee” means only federal employees and officials. However, it is clear that workers in the private sector are also liable to pay income tax.

The First Amendment to the Constitution protects me because I’ve got moral or religious objections to paying taxes: Ah, the good ol’ freedom of speech/freedom of religion argument. The position is that you can refuse to pay federal income taxes because of your religious or moral beliefs, or to protest the use of your taxes to fund certain government programs. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution has nothing to do with expressing your views by withholding the payment of your income taxes. The First Amendment provides, in part, that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . .”

I’ll take the Fifth – I don’t have to incriminate myself by filing a tax return: Would you believe that some people argue that you can refuse to provide financial information on your federal income tax return because your Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination will be violated? Sorry, this just won’t fly.

It constitutes slavery to make me pay taxes: The argument is that if you are compelled to comply with federal income tax laws, it violates the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution. This amendment prohibits slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment if you’ve been convicted of a crime. You may feel like you’re a slave to your job, but paying taxes isn’t your sentence.

African Americans and Native Americans can claim a special tax credit as reparations for slavery and other oppressive treatment: Unscrupulous tax preparers or promoters try to sell a scheme that African Americans are entitled to a so-called “Black Tax Credit” on their federal income tax returns as reparations for slavery and other oppressive treatment, and that Native Americans are entitled to a similar credit. No such credits exist.

The IRS is not an agency of the U.S.: Some people have tried to argue that the Internal Revenue Service is not an agency of the U.S. but is instead a private corporation or an illegal organization. You may have a few choice words to describe the IRS, but there is clear constitutional and statutory authority that the IRS has the authority to enforce the Internal Revenue Code.

I’m not a “person” as defined by the IRS, and so I’m not subject to federal income tax laws: Some people claim that they are not a “person” or “individual” as defined by the Internal Revenue Code, and therefore they are not subject to the federal income tax laws. This argument holds about as much water as saying that it depends on what “is” means.

You can read the entire “The Truth About Frivolous Tax Arguments” and more stupid arguments for not paying your income taxes at the IRS website (pdf file).

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19 Responses to 10 Stupid Arguments For Not Paying Your Income Taxes

  1. davis says:

    It amazes me that people actually think they can get away with arguments like this. I don’t enjoy paying taxes as much as the next person, but these are ridiculous.

  2. barry says:

    I hate taxes! The world would be better if we didn’t have any

  3. Don says:

    From what I have heard and read in my research federal taxes weren’t started till WW1 to financially support building machinary for the war, which was stated that after the war federal taxes were to cease.hence the IRS. Thing is they never did, also I heard that people, businesses started in the US were not taxed previously by the federal government. Why is this? because it was voluntary, you tell me where on the tax form it says that it is mandatory to pay taxes. Yes I do pay my taxes, and it is because of one simple fact, I want to make sure that I have some sort of way of supporting our troops that are over seas, if it was not for that I would not pay one single red cent. Another thing that is quite amusing is that our government keeps printing all this currency, thing is that one dollar that you hold in your hand technically is barely worth a fraction of a penny for the reason of this is our gold deposits in fort knocks and so forth do not equivilate to the amount of currency that is ciculating. quite funny if you ask me. Then on top of that I’m watching the news today and they are talking about the senate wanting to make all the current illegal immagrants in our country legal!!! I mean come on this is a bunch of B.S. I mean the only reason the senate wants to do that is so they can tax them and then line thier pockets with thier money as well. I see this country going into another great depression very soon, so start buying those gold bars and saving them.

  4. james says:

    re: don

    buying gold bars won’t do you much good, in a state of emergency (and if the dollar fails trust me there will be one) the government can and will take yor gold.

  5. april says:

    I know of someone who has not paid taxes in 2 years. What can be done and how do we find out if it was done. And what can happen?
    Thank you for your time

  6. Jeremy says:

    I heard that the government taxes your social security number, not actually you. And your name on your social security card is in all caps because it is a fake person, not actually you. So if you renounce your social security number and get an international drivers license you no longer have to pay income tax. Is there anyway this could possible be true? Is there some sort of loop hole out there?

  7. Alison Jane Lysakowski says:

    This article totally twists the truth. So cleverly, yet I can see through it. Don’t fall for this trap.

  8. Dan says:

    As usual, more publication released by bigger organizations to not fully tell all the truth and to continue scaring people. The fore fathers of this country fought the British to get away from high taxation, they knew that any debt equated to modern day slavery. Today the only reason to pay the IRS taxes is because you don’t have enough money to fight them legally should they chose to wrongfully slander you, and the court and juror are most likely bought off or misled anyway that you won’t get a fair trial.

  9. Thomas says:

    Society says that America is the Super Power and you should be honored to live in this sorry ass country. I think not!!! In researching current and past events that have taken place in this country it is no better than a Third World Country that is run by some extreme psychotic piece of crap. The America Government, Local State Representatives, & Local Law Enforcement agencies have become so corrupted by greed & power that it is completely absurd to think that you could ever dream of not having to pay taxes or receive a fare trial if you were to stand up for your personal freedoms. It seems to me that it is nothing more than legalized corruption.

  10. Steve says:

    In reply to Thomas:

    If this is such a sorry country, why don’t you go find you a better one?

    I bet just about all the tax protesters still drive on our highways.

  11. Steven says:

    The truth is that the 16th amendment was
    not properly ratified. Meaning the income tax is unconstitutional. Also many say we would not have enough money for the government to pay for many services. But income tax only accounts for 1/3 of the governments revenue. Down size the federal government and we are good to go.

  12. GCR says:

    In reply to steve

    “I bet just about all the tax protesters still drive on our highways.”
    actually thats what a state tax is for, But wait a minute are there not a couple states out there that don’t even have one of those? so i guess the real question is what are my tax dollars really going to?

  13. J says:

    This writer poses no credible arguement. Most of the time, she’s just saying: C’mon that can’t be true. And that’s her arguement. Where’s her facts at. She has none.

  14. John says:

    Here’s a simple request. Show me the law and or statute number that says that Amercain citizen’s must pay taxes. I’ll write you a personal check for $100,000.00 if you can show me the proof.

  15. Nick says:

    “When injustice becomes law, rebellion becomes duty.”

  16. Bob says:

    good luck trying to incite people in this country to hold a peaceful and thought out, AND organized rebellion. The only thing you’ll get is a bunch of people too busy with their SUV’s and watching sports to do anything, and on the other side the people with displaced anger who only want a riot and bar brawl. Sad to see my generation’s apathy is real.

  17. In fact, Income tax is voluntary, also the 16th Amendment doesnt give the Internal Revinue service or congress any new powers acording to the Supream Court, unless…. Of course, they dont have to abide buy the Supream Courts decisions.? It is sad to see how in the dark the American people are. Wake up!! Dont live your life the way society wants you to live it! dont let the IRS intimidate you,we must stand up against the Government!
    “we are all lambs, government is our sheppard”

  18. lee lee says:

    I dont believe I nor any black people in america are us citizens. We were stolen from our land. WE SHOULD NOT HAVE TO PAY TAXES in AMERICA!!! america SUCKS!! I hate it here. I dont want to have to pay taxes. I am “AFRICAN AMERICAN” how can I be from 2 continents?? I am HEBREW. Why are those JEWISH people doing better than I? I already know.
    Its all in the bible. And we get charged interest for everything and we should not. America(Babylon) is going down!! for what government is
    doing to our people

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