Undocumented Immigrants’ State & Local Tax Contributions

Report Author: 
Lisa Christensen Gee, Matthews Gardner, & Meg Wiehe
Original Date of Publication: 
February, 2016

Undocumented Immigrants’ State & Local Tax Contributions

Undocumented immigrants in the United States pay a significant proportion of their income in state and local taxes and could potentially pay more through implementation of the Obama administration’s executive actions or passage of comprehensive immigration reform.

Using each state’s effective tax rate combined with state population estimates, the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy 2016 report Undocumented Immigrants’ State and Local Tax Contributions provides state-by-state breakdowns of the current and potential tax contributions of the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. The authors find that undocumented immigrants pay an estimated $11.64 billion in state and local taxes per year, or an average of 8 percent of their income compared to the average nationwide tax rate of only 5.4 percent paid by the top one percent of taxpayers. The authors estimate that full implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) programs would increase the state and local tax contributions of undocumented immigrants by $805 million annually. Moreover, granting legal status to all undocumented immigrants and allowing them to work legally would boost their tax contributions by $2.1 billion per year. (Sophia Mitrokostas for The Immigrant Learning Center Public Education Institute)

Undocumented Immigrants’ State & Local Tax Contributions

undocumented immigrants

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Report File: 
Citation: 

Gee, L. C., Gardner, M. & Wiehe, M. (2016). Undocumented Immigrants’ State & Local Tax Contributions. The Institute on Taxation & Economic Policy. Washington: DC. Available on: http://www.itep.org/immigration/

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