Can Taxes be Paid in Other Ways Than Cash?

When tax time comes around, some artists in Mexico head to their galleries rather than the bank. In 1957, the Mexican government set up a program to help their starving artists pay taxes — artists can gift paintings or other works of art to the government in exchange for owed taxes. A jury of art-knowledgeable people make sure the art is of a high enough caliber to keep things even. The program is based on the number of works an artist sells per year; an artist who only sells a few paintings, for example, may only have to give one to the government, whereas artists who sell many paintings may have to produce 20 or more.

More Tax Man Facts:

  • The Mexican government's alternative tax program has resulted in a substantial government-owned body of artwork — the Mexican government has collected more than 4,000 pieces of art to display.

  • The U.S. Tax Code consists of more than seven million words, more than 12 times the length of War and Peace, one of the longest novels ever written.

  • Similar alternative tax programs exist in other countries, but on a larger scale. For example, instead of paying taxes in the U.S., the government will happily take the family house in exchange to taxes owed.

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More Info: USA Today

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