Tool | October 2016

State-by-State Guide to Taxes

Compare state tax rates and rules -- on income, ordinary purchases, gas, "sin" products, property, and more -- across the U.S.


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The Bottom Line
Map of Illinois

Least Tax-Friendly

Illinois has a low flat tax of 3.75% on income — for now. The bad news is that taxes on just about everything else in Illinois are high and could go higher as lawmakers grapple with the largest state budget deficit in the U.S.

Combined state and local sales taxes are steep in the Prairie State, one of Kiplinger's top ten least tax-friendly states. In some areas, the combined rate can be as high as 10% — among the highest sales tax rates in the U.S. And it also has the second-highest property taxes.

Sales Tax

6.25% state levy. Localities can add as much as 4.75%, and the average combined rate is 8.64%, according to the Tax Foundation. Food, prescription drugs and non-prescription drugs are all taxed at 1% by the state; candy and soda, no matter where they're purchased, are taxed at 6.25%.

Income Tax Range

There is a flat rate of 3.75% of federal adjusted gross income after modifications.

See’s Retiree Tax Map to learn how Illinois taxes Social Security income and other forms of retirement income.

Motor Fuel Taxes

Gasoline: $0.34 per gallon.
Diesel: $0.35 per gallon
Some counties and cities have additional taxes. Fuels with biofuel blends enjoy tax breaks..

Property Taxes

The median property tax on Illinois' median home value of $171,900 is $3,952.

See’s Retiree Tax Map for details on tax breaks for seniors in Illinois.

Vehicle Taxes

Sales tax is 6.25% and up, depending on locality, on purchases of new cars. Private purchases of used cars are subject to a lower use tax that can vary by the age of the vehicle.

Sin Taxes

Beer and cider with an alcohol content of 0.5% to 7%: $0.23 per gallon
Wine: $1.39 per gallon
Liquor: $8.55 per gallon

Cigarettes and little cigars: $1.98 per pack,Chicago levies an additional $1.15 tax per pack, Cook County has an additional tax of $3.00 and Evanston levies one of $0.50
Moist snuff: $0.30 per ounce
Other tobacco products: 36% of the wholesale price. E-cigarettes/juice: Chicago has an excise tax of $0.80 per unit plus $0.55 per mL. Cook County has an excise tax of $0.20 per mL

Travel Taxes

Hotels: 6%. Additional taxes are levied by local governments. The combined rate in Chicago tops 16%.

Rental cars: 5%, with additional taxes levied by local governments.

Taxes On Wireless Service


Inheritance and Estate Taxes

There is no inheritance tax. Illinois has an estate tax with a $4 million exemption. The maximum estate-tax rate is 16%.

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