Tax in Alaska: a complete guide
When you look into Alaska's various applicable tax obligations, there's much to get your head around.
According to a 2022 analysis from the nonprofit Tax Foundation, residents of Alaska enjoy the lowest tax burden among all the states. Between state and local taxes, residents can expect to give over 4.6 percent of their income to tax. In New York, this number is closer to 16 percent. Check out tax rates in all states here.
While the tax burden is low, the cost of living is higher than the national average. It's estimated Alaska ranks as the fourth most expensive state or district—just behind New York, Washington DC, and Hawaii.
However, it’s worth noting that the cost of living in Alaska can be offset by the yearly Permanent Fund Dividend paid to Alaskan residents.
Alaska income tax
Alaska is one of the few states that does not have a state income tax. It is one of a handful of states who do not have a state income tax.
In fact, does the reverse of most states. It pays legal residents to live there. Those who have lived in Alaska for at least one year and intend to remain in the state can receive an annual stipend called the Permanent Fund Dividend.
In 2022, the 2022 Permanent Fund Dividend amount was $3,284. This was a historically high amount due to the addition of a $662 energy relief payment. In 2021, the PFD amount was $1,114.
Residents still pay federal taxes and must file their federal income tax returns yearly.
Alaska has a 2 percent to 9.4 percent corporate income tax rate.
Alaska sales tax
Alaska is also one of the five states that do not levy a state sales tax.
However, several municipal governments may levy a sales tax, including boroughs, the Alaska equivalent of counties, and municipalities. This can be as high as 7.5 percent. Municipalities can create their own taxing laws and collect their own local taxes separate from the state.
As Alaska does not impose a statewide sales tax, it has no statewide sales tax exemptions.
Alcohol is subject to a state excise tax:
The Alaska Beer Tax is $1.07 per gallon.
The Alaska Liquor Tax is $12.80.30 per gallon.
The Alaska Wine Tax is $2.50 per gallon.
Alaska property tax
Although it is the largest state in the US, Alaska has one of the smallest populations. It is the only state where most land is not subject to property taxes.
However, the property tax people pay is slightly higher than elsewhere – Alaska's average effective property tax rate is 1.17 percent. According to the Office of the State Assessor, the average property tax paid is $1,435.
Senior citizens in Alaska can enjoy a tax break. Homeowners 65 and older (or surviving spouses 60 and older) are exempt from municipal taxes on the first $150,000 of the assessed value of their property.
Alaska motor tax
The 0 percent sales tax will also apply here if you're buying a vehicle in Alaska. However, remember, local government pay still apply their own sales tax, up to 7.5 percent.
Alaska estate tax
Whether expecting to receive an inheritance or hoping to leave something behind for your loved ones, you may be concerned about how this monetary gift will be taxed.
Thankfully, Alaska has no state-level estate tax or inheritance tax to account for, so there’s no need to worry.
Only six American states require residents to pay any state inheritance tax as of 2023, and only 12 states currently impose estate taxes. It is, however, worth looking into your possible inheritance liabilities if you receive money from someone who isn’t a resident of Alaska.
Alaska retirement tax
If you plan to retire to Alaska, the state offers a distinctive retirement experience that attracts many retirees yearly.
Alaska is one of the few states that does not have a state income tax, meaning Social Security, income from retirement accounts, and pension payments are not taxed by the state. This could be a significant financial benefit for retirees.
For further tax guidance and to ensure you’re not paying more tax than you need to, it’s wise to speak to an expert. A financial advisor can help you handle all your tax queries and ensure you’re not paying more tax than needed.
Senior Content Writer
Rachel is a Senior Content Writer at Unbiased. She has nearly a decade of experience writing and producing content across a range of different sectors.