…in case anyone doing last-minute filing might be wondering.
(Tax day, by the way, has been extended from the traditional April 15 to April 18, because Washington DC celebrates Emancipation Day a day earlier than usual this year).
Amish pay all taxes you and I do, but are exempt from Social Security. They do not collect from the system, though.
However, in at least 2 situations, Amish business owners actually end up paying Social Security. And in one instance, even Amish employees may still have to pay. You can read more here: Do Amish pay taxes?
Amish have their own accountants, too. A few years back I had a look at an Indiana Amish directory and wrote a post on unusual Amish occupations. At the time of the directory’s printing, the settlement had 3 Amish accountants.
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I wish I was exempt from Social Security. I don’t think I will ever collect from the system either.
Wow 2 topics in one day,for someone like me thats like christmas. And a good topic because theres still a small amount of folks who think the Amish dont pay any taxes at all. Richard from Penn
I agree with you Carolyn, with so much mistrust out there regarding social security your not alone in your feelings. What’s become a way for Americans to have a little money to help in their older years using their own money i might ad, has become an available cash jar for the government to tap into when the need arises. I say don’t take the money out of our pay checks, and just let us save the money ourselves, we are not stupid even though you might think we are. But sadly as we are now paying for that generation who are now receiving their social security, and they deserve it because they paid into the system just as they did for the previous generation. Putting this Jeannie back in the bottle would prove daunting at the least. Richard from Lebanon county’s Amish country.
The government mishandled funds that were entrusted to them for generations. Had they not been putting their hand in the cookie jar for other projects,,, there would be no problem with social security. I feel sorry for future generations who are paying into it now as they will probably never see a return on the dollars they pay in. Such a sad situation.
Blessings, Alice who is busier than a one armed paper hanger, LOL.
Thanks for this post at an appropo time (the usual Tax Day). I think one of the biggest misconceptions about the Amish is that they don’t pay taxes. I was raised in southeastern Minnesota not far from the Harmony, Minn., and Riceville,Iowa Amish settlements.
When non-Amish people would be talking negatively about Amish life like “their horse and buggies are a traffic hazard”, many times
they would add, “And they don’t pay taxes”. Sometimes when I
would try to explain that Amish do pay taxes, people still didn’t
I read in this morning’s paper that major changes are being proposed for Medicare and Medicaid. If these really do come to pass, I wonder if we’ll follow the Amish practice of mutual aid in helping each other pay medical bills and take care of our frail elderly. Probably not to the extent the Amish do, because I think their practice of mutual aid is largely motivated by their religious beliefs and practices they share in common. The vast
majority of Americans do not hold in common similar beliefs and practices.
I am in Lancaster, PA enjoying the weather and the countryside and all of the Amish farms. The Amish pay their taxes and obey the law. When Officials from Washington came to Lancaster County many years ago, they asked the Amish farmers to sign a government contract curtailing some of their crops. The response “No, we don’t sign government contracts, we obey the law.” The agents returned to Washington not knowing what to do. They returned later to find that the farmers did indeed curtail the crops.. The Agent said “We will pay you for the crops you did not raise.” The Amish response “No, We don’t take money for what we don’t do.” Thought this might interest those who haven’t heard this,”
Interesting little story bob, and its nice to see a local on here, im in south Lebanon county. We are receiving some heavy rains here in the Lancaster/Lebanon area today, and i just heard on Fox news about tornados touching down in Pennsylvania. So I’m keeping a close eye on that.So im sure your getting the same thing your way Bob. Richard from Pennsylvania.
Taxes & Tornados
Bob and Richard,
I heard about that slew of twisters over the past day or two, and am hoping you are both OK there in PA. I’ve been a “severe storm spotter” for several years around here (nothing “official”, just try to attend the county’s “severe weather” seminar, annually), so my ears are always “perked up” whenever I hear about tornadic activity. Someone I work with has a couple of friends who are “storm spotting” right now—don’t know if they followed the storms your way, as they started further west. Now that it’s Spring, let’s all keep an “eye to the sky” and be safe.
The posts about Amish paying taxes are very interesting to me. Bob, I loved your story! I’m keeping it for posterity. It makes me respect and admire the Amish even more! I think they have their own, “original” (and better) “social security”, as Al in Ky. pointed out—their “mutual aid” beliefs and practice. I’ll bet you don’t see too many “needy” or (certainly not) lonely Amish elderly. Large families help!
Oh—an apology about the wrong date for the Hallmark Channel’s airing of “The Shunning”—it wasn’t last week Sat., but TONIGHT (8 pm central). So sorry for the mixed up dates, to anyone who was wondering what I was talking about!
Alice Mary & Richard. The weather was so nice, and then it really took a turn. I will keep an “eye to the sky”. But, it is suppose to be nice again by Monday.
One of these days I’ll get over to S. Lebanon for a visit Richard, but for now I better stop and go do may taxes. 🙂
A good Sunday morning to everyone, and greetings Mary Alice and Bob. I can only speak for myself, but i made it through ok from Saturdays heavy winds and rain in the Lancaster area. I’m not sure how Bob made out, but i trust he’s ok as well. You have an interesting job as a storm spotter Mary Alice, and id love to hear about some of your sightings in the past on some post at some point. I’m sure you have a few interesting stories to tell everyone. Anytime bob on the visit, that’s one thing that would be interesting would be to meet for coffee sometime with anyone on Amish America who lives in, or will be in the Lancaster/Lebanon county area. Erik if i remember might be coming to the Lancaster area this summer, so it would be a readers get together and maybe if you would have one of Erik’s books he maybe would sign it. Now if i could only get those 2012 calendars printed before then,lol. Richard from Lebanon county’s Amish community.
Sorry Alice Marry for the error in my last post, as i said Mary Alice instead of Alice Mary.I stand corrected. Richard from Lebanon countys Amish community.
Erik – I was just watching the news and saw the devastation in N.C.
I remembered you are from there. I am sending prayers and blessings to all those affected by the storms. I hope your family is safe and sound and out of harm’s way!
We had a section of siding come off in the winds, but that was about it. As Richard mentioned, it is a nice idea to get together for a cup of coffee for the Amish American group and in the same area. I tried to meet with Erik when he was in Lancaster, but we were not here at the same time. He is a moving target always on the go.
Another tax story about an Amish man named Miller. Claiming 16 children didn’t sit right with the IRS. “What we need is proof of such a large family”. One might have thought Miller would bring in the paper proof, but the next day Miller came to the IRS office with his wife and 16 children and they introduced themselves one by one. 🙂
Raleigh, NC tornado
Thank you Michelle and everyone else for the thoughts! Raleigh happens to be my hometown, and at least one tornado cut through the city Saturday. My family was ok; my uncle’s place was nearly in the direct path of the tornado though; the 3 people who died in Raleigh were just a little ways away.
My cousin was at home at the time. They lost a ton of trees on a very wooded lot; it looks like a bomb went off. By some good fortune only one tree hit the house, though plenty could have. She said the house was shaking and doors were opening on their own. We are just very glad she and everyone else is okay.
Lot of comments here and elsewhere I’d like to get to but may have to wait til later in the day–sorting out my irons right now!
Social Security Numbers?
Do the Amish typically have a social security number? I refer to the number on a card, not to participation in the program. The number is used in all sorts of contexts in “English” life, I am curious to know if there are groups who manage without one.
Amish children are no different than non amish children when they are born. They are assigned a social security number.
Social Security Numbers
I am not aware of anyone without a SSN. I do remember a ‘push’, back in the eighties, that required many who did not have such to get it, or face fines.
of the Librum.
Amish in Indiana pay taxes for goods and services etc., they are free to exempt from social security taxes and when they pick up their plates for their buggies, wagons etc., they pay no EXCISE taxes so the damage done to roads and streets by horse drawn vehicles by the steel horseshoes is not paid for by the Amish. LaGrange County has a law that the borax, a high density steel on the horseshoes cannot be more than the a certain thichness. It is harden steel welded onto the shoes.