Taxes that affect most North Carolina residents – and that you want to be aware of – are income, sales and use, and highway use taxes. Here is some helpful information about each one:
Income taxes are due on your taxable earnings each year. The requirements for filing income tax returns in North Carolina are different from filing your federal taxes. Every NC resident whose income for the taxable year equals or exceeds the following amounts must file a state return: $7,500 for single taxpayers, $15,000 for those who are married and filing jointly, $7,500 for married taxpayers who file separately, $12,000 for those who file as a head of household and $15,000 for qualifying widow(er) with a dependent child.
Sales taxes are due on purchases of most goods and certain services in North Carolina. The total general state and applicable local and transit rates of sales and use tax is 6.75 percent in most counties. A few counties have a rate of 7, 7.25, or 7.5 percent. To find the rate in your county, visit this site: www.dornc.com/taxes/sales/taxrates.html.
Examples of items subject to sales tax are: tangible personal property, certain digital property, rental accommodations, charges for dry cleaning, pressing and laundering linens or apparel, and certain other services. Residents may owe use tax, if they purchase any taxable tangible personal property, services or digital property outside of North Carolina but intend to use the products inside the state, or if they did not pay sales tax on a taxable product at the time of the purchase. Individuals should report use taxes on their income tax returns each year.
For more information, visit this site: www.dornc.com/taxes/sales/use.html
The state’s motor fuels tax is 36 cents per gallon.
North Carolina also collects a 3 percent Highway Use Tax on vehicles in lieu of a state sales tax on vehicles. The tax is assessed each time a title is issued unless exempt by statute. Out-of-state residents who move to North Carolina pay the tax according to a value determined by the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles and may be subject to a maximum tax of $150.00. If a sales tax or use tax was paid to a taxing jurisdiction outside North Carolina within 90 days of applying for a title here, credit may be allowed.
For more information, visit the Newcomer’s Guide on the Department of Motor Vehicles Website at:
If you have questions or need more information about North Carolina taxes, please visit the Department of Revenue’s Website at
or call 1.877.252.3052.