Double-Digit Chicago Sales Tax Raises Tax Evasion Questions

March 14, 2008

As shoppers leave Illinois to avoid Chicago’s new 10.25% sales tax, Tax Foundation chief economist Patrick Fleenor was asked by the Chicago Tribune about the so-called use tax. Aren’t shoppers legally required to file a tax form and submit the 10.25% payment even on out-of-state purchases?

“Technically, yes,” said Fleenor. “It’s basically tax evasion, and that’s what officials should be concerned about. By definition, border shopping is about distance, but the Internet takes that all away. Now anyone can be a border shopper and avoid paying tax.”

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