amish and taxes

why are so many people under the impression the amish don't pay taxes, even a commentator on the piece about the amish heaters mentions it, they pay property, school, and sales taxes, and i am sure they pay income tax, anyone know why so many people are under this assumption that they pay no taxes, just curious???

TomK's picture

Re: amish and taxes

I think the thought (actually 3 of them) about them not paying taxes comes from the same grain of the other thought and that is the Amish only deals in cash - pay cash for their farms, pay cash for their buggies, etc. etc.

Old school thought from our forefathers who in some logical thinking mode thought that anyone who bought things in cash didn't pay taxes... which was somewhat true during the 30's and 40's

The other old school thought was that they were a religous group and as such didn't have to pay taxes. Which you even hear today about churches not having to pay property taxes, which is false.

One other thought was that they were self-employed farmers who made up income low enough so as not to pay taxes...

So what you have is a combining of several thoughts through the ages which still linger today.

The old-school combine thoughts go like this: Them Amish pay for everything in cash and you know them religous groups never pay taxes, plus being farmers, they're self-employed and just make up income as they go...


Just my 2 cents........


Re: amish and taxes

Well, in that case, since their homes are used in lieu of church buildings, they shouldn't have to pay property taxes!  Wink

Re: amish and taxes

I don't know!  It makes me soo mad.  My FIL does not believe me on this matter, and doesn't like to do business with Amish/Mennonites because he doesn't think they pay their fair share.  Considering that they don't accept government subsidies, they are probably paying MORE than their fair share!

As I told my mom, if the Plain religions were exempt from taxes, don't you think more people would be converting??  LOL

Re: amish and taxes

Good point, LuvM, let's all become Amish.  Frankly I'm stymied as to where the whole misconception began about the Amish not paying taxes, it simply isn't true.  I've done everything I can to dispel the misinformation, even devoting a page to it in the Amish Cook at Home...but, still, the misinformation lingers.....

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