New Jersey’s state tax burden is one of the highest in the nation, but on average, New Jersey taxpayers receive one of the largest income tax refunds from the IRS, according to two recently released studies on how states compare.
In one, the financial news company 24/7 Wall Street ranked New Jersey 48th in the nation for its local tax burden, or the percentage of one’s income that goes to pay state and local taxes. In the other, the financial company SmartAsset found that New Jerseyans, on average, receive the seventh largest federal income tax refund in the nation.
In the local tax burden study, 24/Wall Street used data from the Tax Foundation to determine the amount of property taxes, income taxes and sales taxes paid to state and local governments.
On average, New Jerseyans contribute 12.2 percent of their income to local taxes, lower than only New York (12.7 percent) and Connecticut (12.6 percent). California ranks 47th at 11 percent.
SmartAsset, meanwhile, said state residents came away with an average refund on their federal income taxes of $2,943. In that study, the company divided the total amount of money refunded by the number of refunds issued in 2016.
As SmartAsset points out, having a big refund is not really a great idea. (See the full study here.)
“Getting a tax refund can feel like getting money for nothing, but remember, this is money you already worked hard for!” the website says. “Research has shown that when windfall recipients receive their money they tend to spend it more freely.”