Pennsylvania State Excise Taxes 2016 - Fuel, Cigarette, and Alcohol Taxes
0.00¢ per gallon
$1.60 per pack
$7.20 per gal
0¢ per gal
8¢ per gal
- What are Pennsylvania's Excise Taxes?
- Pennsylvania General Excise Taxes
- Pennsylvania Alcohol Taxes
What is an Excise Tax?
An excise tax is a tax directly levied on certain goods by a state or federal government. The most prominent excise taxes collected by the Pennsylvania state government are the fuel tax on gasoline and the so-called "sin tax" collected on cigarettes and alcoholic beverages.
An excise tax is not the same thing as the Pennsylvania Sales Tax.The Pennsylvania Sales Tax is collected as a percentage of the final purchase price of all qualifying sales, and is collected directly from the end consumer of the product.
Pennsylvania's excise taxes, on the other hand, are flat per-unit taxes that must be paid directly to the Pennsylvania government by the merchant before the goods can be sold. Merchants may be required to attach tax stamps to taxable merchandise to show that the excise tax was paid.
Even though excise taxes are collected from businesses, virtually all Pennsylvania merchants pass on the excise tax to the customer through higher prices for the taxed goods.
Pennsylvania per capita excise tax
Pennsylvania collects an average of $554 in yearly excise taxes per capita, higher then 74% of the other 50 states.
Pennsylvania General Excise Taxes - Gasoline, Cigarettes, and More
Pennsylvania collects general excise taxes on the sale of motor fuel (gasoline and diesel), cigarettes (per pack), and cell phone service plans. Other general taxes, similar to excise taxes, may be collected on other items including gas guzzlers, tanning salons, firearms, vehicle sales, transportation tickets, and more.
Pennsylvania Gas Tax1st highest gas tax
The Pennsylvania excise tax on gasoline is 0.00¢ per gallon, one of the highest gas taxes in the country. Pennsylvania's excise tax on gasoline is ranked #1 out of the 50 states. The Pennsylvania gas tax is included in the pump price at all gas stations in Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania Cigarette Tax21st highest cigarette tax
The Pennsylvania excise tax on cigarettes is $1.60 per 20 cigarettes, higher then 58% of the other 50 states. Pennsylvania's excise tax on cigarettes is ranked #21 out of the 50 states. The Pennsylvania cigarette tax of $1.60 is applied to every 20 cigarettes sold (the size of an average pack of cigarettes). If a pack contains more then 20 cigarettes, a higher excise tax will be collected.
Pennsylvania Cellphone Tax8th highest cellphone tax
The average tax collected on cell phone plans in Pennsylvania is $14.08 per phone service plan, one of the highest cellphone taxes in the country. Pennsylvania's average cellphone tax is ranked #8 out of the 50 states. The Pennsylvania cellphone tax is already included in the service plan price you pay to your service provider, and may be listed as "Misc. taxes and Fees" or "Other" on your monthly bill.
Pennsylvania Car Tax
Pennsylvania collects a registration fee and a title fee on the sale or transfer of cars and motorcycles, which are essentially renamed excise taxes. Unlike standard excise taxes, however, the end consumer must pay the tax directly to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and receive documentation (registration and title papers) proving the fees were paid.
Pennsylvania Alcohol Excise Taxes - Liquor, Wine, and Beer
Pennsylvania collects special excise taxes on the sale of all types of alcohol, subdivided into specific taxes on wine, beer, and liquor (hard alcohol other then wine and beer). Alcohol taxes are sometimes collectively referred to as "sin taxes", which also include excise taxes on cigarettes, gambling, drugs, and certain other items.
Please note that the IRS also collects a federal excise taxes on alcoholic beverages, which are included separately from Pennsylvania's alcohol taxes in the final purchase price.
Pennsylvania Beer Tax45th highest beer tax
The Pennsylvania excise tax on beer is $0.08 per gallon, one of the lowest beer taxes in the country. Pennsylvania's beer excise tax is ranked #45 out of the 50 states. The Pennsylvania beer tax is already added to the purchase price of all beer bought in Pennsylvania, whether in kegs, bottles, or cans.
Pennsylvania Wine Tax0th highest wine tax
The Pennsylvania excise tax on Wine is $0.00 per gallon, one of the highest wine taxes in the country. Pennsylvania's excise tax on wine is ranked #0 out of the 50 states. All wine sales in Pennsylvania are through state-owned stores. In addition to excise taxes, other taxes and fees may apply to wine purchases. The Pennsylvania wine tax is already added to the purchase price of all wine bought in Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania Liquor Tax18th highest liquor tax
The Pennsylvania excise tax on liquor is $7.20 per gallon, higher then 64% of the other 50 states. Pennsylvania's excise tax on Spirits is ranked #18 out of the 50 states. All liquor stores in Pennsylvania are government-owned. Because of this. excise taxes for hard alcohol are set by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS). The Pennsylvania liquor tax applies to all hard alcohol (alchoholic beverages other then beer and wine), and is already included in the purchase price by the retailer.
Pennsylvania Excise Tax Deductions & Refunds
Can I deduct my Pennsylvania Excise taxes?
Unlike the Pennsylvania Sales Tax, excise taxes are not generally deductible on Pennsylvania income tax returns or on your federal tax return. However, the IRS occasionally allows certain excise taxes to be deducted for certain tax years.
- Vehicle Tax Deduction
- Pennsylvania sales and excise taxes on cars or vehicles bought during 2009 may be deducted once from your federal tax return. You cannot deduct excise taxes for vehicles bought during other years.
- Phone Tax Deduction
- You may deduct excise taxes paid on long-distance phone calls between the years of 2003 and 2006 from your federal tax return.
Can I get a Pennsylvania Excise Tax Refund?
While sales tax refunds are available for goods that are purchased in Pennsylvania and exported, Pennsylvania excise taxes paid on goods are generally non-refundable. Incentives may exist allowing certain state of federal excise taxes to be refunded on goods bought for specific uses, but such incentives change frequently.
Pennsylvania Excise Tax - References
- Tax Foundation, State Excise Tax Collections Per Capita, Updated 2009
- Tax Foundation, Gasoline Excise Taxes, Updated 2012
- Tax Foundation, Cigarette Excise Taxes, Updated 2012
- Tax Foundation, Liquor Excise Taxes, Updated 2011
- Tax Foundation, Beer Excise Tax Rates, Updated 2012
- Tax Foundation, Average Wine Taxes, Updated 2011
- Tax Foundation, Average Cell Phone Taxes, Updated 2010