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Bankrate's 2009 Tax Guide
State tax pages
Take a state tax expedition. Each of the states has its own way of gathering revenues from its residents.
State tax roundup

Louisiana collects income taxes using three rates: 2 percent, 4 percent and 6 percent. More on Louisiana taxes can be found in the tabbed pages below.

Personal income tax
  Louisiana collects income taxes from its residents utilizing three tax brackets.

For single taxpayers, they are:
-- 2 percent on the first $12,500 of taxable income
-- 4 percent on taxable income between $12,501 and $25,000
-- 6 percent on taxable income of $25,001 and above.

For married persons filing joint returns, the rates remain the same but the income brackets are doubled.
Residents need to file Form IT-540, which is due by May 15.
Sales tax
The sales tax rate in Louisiana is 4 percent: a 3.97 percent Louisiana sales tax and a .03 percent Louisiana Tourism Promotion District sales tax.
Political subdivisions also levy their own sales tax in addition to the state fees.
The state also has a use tax of 8 percent applied toward goods purchased out of state, which includes 4 percent to be distributed by the Department of Revenue to local governments. The use tax is in lieu of the actual local rate in effect in your area, and is payable regardless of whether the actual combined state and local rate in your area is equal to, higher than, or lower than 8 percent.
Personal and real property taxes
Property taxes are assessed and collected at the local level -- 64 parishes and 7 municipal districts -- and not by the Louisiana Department of Revenue. The Louisiana Tax Commission has a regulatory role regarding property assessments.
Taxpayers having property in the state of Louisiana are required to file a property tax return with the assessor of any parish and any municipality levying a tax on or before April 1 or within 45 days of receipt of the return form, whichever is later, furnishing values as of Jan. 1.
Property subject to ad valorem taxation is listed on the assessment rolls at its assessed valuation, which, less some exceptions, is a percentage of its fair market value. The percentage of fair market value is uniform throughout the state upon the same class of property.
Louisiana offers a homestead exemption on the first $7,500 of the value of a person's primary residence. The exemption, however, does not usually apply to municipal taxes.
Inheritance and estate taxes
Louisiana collects an inheritance tax. Each heir receives an exemption that is subtracted from their inheritance to determine the amount taxable.
The amount taxable is then multiplied by the applicable tax rates. The exemption and tax rates to which each heir is entitled is based upon their relationship to the decedent.
All estates that are subject to federal estate taxation under the U.S. Internal Revenue Code must file a Louisiana Estate Transfer Tax Return. Since the phaseout of the federal estate tax credit, no state estate tax is imposed.
Other Louisiana Tax Facts
The Louisiana Department of Revenue offers eligible taxpayers the option of free Internet filing.
Once residents have filed, they can go online to check their refund status.
Athletes, even those who are not full-time residents of Louisiana, who received income from Louisiana sources must file a state tax return, reporting their state income.
Taxpayers can report suspected cases of tax fraud by filing online reports with the state.
Find out more on personal income tax rates at the Louisiana Department of Revenue's Web site.
To download tax forms on this site, you will need to install a free copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here for instructions.
-- Updated: Feb. 4, 2009

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