The Supreme Court
Taxing the Populace
As we discussed in Ebbs and Flows of Court Leadership, the Constitution did not allow for a federal income tax unless it was apportioned to the states. All that changed in 1913 with the ratification of the Sixteenth Amendment.
Today most tax cases involving federal laws are settled in the U.S. Tax Courts, but occasionally the Supreme Court will decide to hear a case if there is a question of constitutionality that needs to be decided. The Supreme Court also gets involved in tax disputes relating to state tax issues that cross state boundaries.
In this section, we'll review some of the recent Supreme Court tax decisions that include topics such as taxes on tips, gaming taxes, and sales taxes.