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Arkansas Consumer Tax Laws

Every state raises taxes in some form, usually a combination of personal income taxes and a variety of consumer taxes, in order to raise revenue for state programs and public services. Not all states collect both personal income tax and sales tax, but they all levy excise taxes on certain consumer products considered unhealthy, non-essential, or that are linked to other societal costs. Cigarettes, for example, cost the community in both primary and secondary smoke illnesses, while gasoline is converted into CO2 and contributes to global warming. Also, gasoline taxes are used to pay for highway maintenance.

While no one likes paying taxes, they serve an important function in a society that depends on shared resources, such as public education and emergency services. Anyone caught selling cigarettes, liquor, or other such items tax-free (perhaps brought in from another state or country) may be charged with tax evasion.

Arkansas Consumer Taxes at a Glance

The base retail sales tax rate in Arkansas is 6.5 percent, but consumers may pay more than 11 percent in certain municipalities after the local rate is added. Cigarettes are taxed at $1.15 per pack of 20, while taxes on snuff, chewing tobacco, and cigars are 68 percent of the manufacturer's price. The use tax refers to taxes charged on goods that are bought in another state with lower taxes for primary use in Arkansas.

The current rates for consumer taxes in Arkansas are listed in the following table. See FindLaw's Tax Law section for more articles and resources.

Sales Tax 6.5% §§26-52-301, 302 (but can be as high as 11.5%, depending on local municipal tax rate)
Cigarette Tax $1.15 per pack of 20 §26-57-208
Gasoline Tax per Gallon 40.2¢ (includes 18.4¢ federal tax) §§26-55-205, 1002
Use Tax 6.5% §§26-52-302; 26-53-106, 107
Liquor Tax Beer 23¢/gal.; Light wine 25¢/gal.; Wine 75¢ per gal.; Spirits $2.50/gal. §3-7-104; Premixed spirits $1.00/gal.; Light spirits 50¢/gal.
Gambling Tax NA

Note: State laws are subject to change at any time through the enactment of newly signed statutes, appellate court decisions, or other means. While we strive to ensure the accuracy of these pages, you may want to contact an Arkansas tax law attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

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Arkansas Consumer Tax Laws: Related Resources

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