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April 12, 2024

Study: At $855,307, CT ranks third in nation for most lifetime taxes paid

Contributed Which states pay the most in taxes compared to their lifetime earnings?

In case you forgot, taxes are due April 15.

A recent study from the personal finance research website Self Financial Inc. gives taxpayers a friendly reminder of their lifetime contributions to the government.

According to Self’s rankings, Connecticut’s lifetime tax burden ranks third in the nation at $855,307. That number represents 49.4% of the average lifetime earnings in Connecticut of $1.7 million.

Leading the country was New Jersey, where residents pay $987,117 in lifetime taxes — 54.3% of their lifetime earnings, according to the study. 

Washington, D.C., placed second, with a lifetime tax total of $884,820.

Following Connecticut, Massachusetts placed fourth, with an $816,700 in lifetime tax encumbrance.

The average taxpayer in the U.S. will spend $524,625 on various state and federal taxes in their lifetime — about a third (34.7%) of their estimated lifetime earnings ($1.5 million), the study found.

The state with the lowest tax burden was West Virginia, where residents pay a lifetime cost of $358,407 –— 28.4% of their lifetime earnings.

But many states in the Northeast have higher taxes, due to local property markets, salaries and government actions, according to the study.


Self’s analysis accounts for taxes on income and specific expenditure categories: cars, homes, clothing, food/drink, entertainment and personal care. Other potential expenditures that may cause taxes to be paid throughout an individual’s life are not included.

The research is based on data collected in January and February 2024 from sources that include the U.S. Treasury Fiscal Data, the U.S. Census Bureau, the federal Consumer Expenditure Survey and Zillow.

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