Cellphone Taxes Continue to Rise

Cellphone Taxes Continue to Rise


If you’re like me, you don’t go anywhere without your wireless device, and you count on it for all kinds of things. It helps me do my job better, but it’s also how I stay connected with family, friends and coworkers, keep up on the latest news and gossip, and even do those un-fun things like paying bills and letting my boss know I’m running late. There are many times where I literally would be lost without my wireless device.

I’m not ashamed to say I love that thing! But, when it comes to paying the bill, there’s an ugly side we can all count on, and that’s paying an excessive federal, state and local government wireless taxes and fees.

In fact, a recent study by economist Scott Mackey of KSE Partners shows that the average American wireless consumer now pays more than 17% (17.18%, to be exact)in monthly wireless taxes and fees. That’s up from 16.26% since the last time he looked at these numbers in 2010. That means that for your wireless service every month, you’re paying a tax rate nearly two and a half times higher than the average general sales tax rate (7.33%) that you’d pay if you bought another taxable good or service.

It’s just unfair (as this video demonstrates).

Mackey has been tracking these tax rates since 2003, and since then the overall tax burden on you, the wireless consumer, has grown about four times faster than the general sales tax rate. Check out where your state stands.

Take a look at this infographic and help us spread it far and wide so consumers can learn about how much their wireless services is taxed (our research shows most have no clue) and begin to fight for tax fairness.


Congress is currently considering a five-year freeze (the bipartisan ‘Wireless Tax Fairness Act’) on any new and discriminatory state and local wireless taxes and fees for five years. The House passed it a year ago, and if the Senate can just get it over the finish line in the next few weeks, consumers would get some much need relief. Help us get the Senate’s attention on this issue by writing your Senator today.

Join us in our fight against unfair wireless taxes and fees!