Tax season Opens a New Window. is officially underway – and many Americans are looking forward to getting a chunk of their hard-earned money Opens a New Window. back in the form of a refund this season.
While the average person expects to receive about $3,000 back from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), she will have likely give up around 30 percent of her pre-tax earnings to the agency.
That’s according to research from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), as cited by Tax Foundation Opens a New Window. , which analyzed tax returns among single Americans with no children earning an average income in 2017. The group found that the average burden – without accounting for state and local sales taxes – per person was $18,198, the equivalent of 31.7 percent of pretax earnings.
Income taxes accounted for an estimated 16.9 percent – about $9,700 – of the total tax burden, compared with the average among OECD countries of 13.5 percent.
U.S. payroll taxes accounted for about $8,495.
A person who made $57,407 in pretax earnings kept about $39,209 in 2017, about 68.3 percent.
However, the tax burden decreases substantially for a married couple with two children, to about 20.8 percent. That is consistent with trends in most other OECD countries.
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When compared with countries in the OECD, the U.S. has the 11th lowest tax burden – compared to the average among all 35 members of nearly 36 percent. Chile had the lowest overall tax burden, at 7 percent, followed by New Zealand.
However, U.S. taxes are expected to fall as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The 2018 tax season—which officially began on Monday – is the first to take the new law into account.