State and Local Taxation

State and Local Taxation


Welcome to LawShelf’s video-course on State and Local Taxation. This course provides an overview of common state and local tax policies, as well as how state and local tax laws work alongside the federal tax code. This is a beginner-level course and no prior knowledge of law or taxation is required.

The course begins with an overview of taxation authorities, including those of the federal and state governments, in our federalist system. We’ll look at the different types of taxes assessed by governments on all levels and the balancing that must be done between state and federal tax systems. We’ll also focus on the state and local tax effects of two major pieces of 2010’s legislation: The Affordable Care Act and the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Module two looks at licenses, fees and excise taxes. We’ll cover what licensing means and how license fees are assessed. We’ll also look at the interplay between state and federal licensing schemes. We’ll briefly touch on licensing procedures and requirements, before ending the module with a discussion of excise taxes, which are often ways in which governments regulate behavior through tax policy.

In Module three, we’ll look at taxes on the local level. We’ll cover various types of sales taxes and how they may be imposed on both the state and local levels. We’ll also cover property taxes, which are important sources of revenues for counties and cities, along with some other types of local taxes. Finally, we’ll look at the effects of certain federal laws on state and local tax revenues.

In Module 4, we’ll cover employment taxes. We’ll discuss the federal “FICA” payroll taxes and then move on to wage garnishment and withholding for tax and other debts. We’ll also cover the application of state rules to tax withholdings for income and payroll tax, and end the module with a discussion of residency for employment tax purposes.

We’ll continue with that theme in Module five, where we’ll cover multistate taxation issues. We’ll primarily focus on what happens when people or businesses earn income in multiple states. There are federal constitutional and statutory limitations on multiple states taxing an entity’s income, and we’ll look carefully at these limitations.

When you complete this course, you should have a solid grasp of the types of taxes and fees that provide states and localities with revenue and how those interplay with federal taxes and federal and constitutional limitations.

Best of luck and we welcome your feedback. 

What is a video-course?

A LawShelf video-course is an in-depth series of presentations on a discreet legal topic. LawShelf video-courses focus on practical legal information and applications and are each designed to familiarize the viewer with a legal topic quickly and efficiently.

Who should take a video-course?

Our video courses are designed for professionals such as attorneys, paralegals, corporate officers and financial professionals, as well as laypeople looking to deepen their knowledge of particular areas of law. The courses allow you to acquire the specific knowledge and skills that you need without the expense and time commitment of going “back to school” for a degree. 

How do I learn?

Video courses are divided into 5 or 6 modules.  Each module contains a video lesson (usually about 15 minutes long) and a series of self-test questions that you can use to practice and make sure that you understand the material.

How do I complete a video-course?

To complete a video-course, you must pass a 10-question multiple-choice examination by scoring 70% or higher.  The questions on the exam are randomly selected from the self-test question sets for the various modules. You can retake an exam as many times as you need to, though you will not get the same questions each time since the questions are drawn from an exam bank.

How long will it take me to complete a video-course?

Between watching the modules, doing the self-test practice questions, reviewing the material and taking the final exam, we estimate that completing a video-course requires a time investment of 4-5 hours.  The courses are designed to get straight to the point. We’re cognizant that your time is valuable, and we condense the information you need to know to comprehensively cover a subject into as little time as practical.

Is there limit to how many video-courses I can take or complete?

No. A LawShelf subscription enables you to access any and all LawShelf content, including all video-courses. You can take courses as quickly or slowly as your time allows.

Do I receive any recognition for completing a video-course?

Once you complete the course by passing the final exam, you will be awarded a digital badge to display as evidence of your training and accomplishment.

How will a digital badge help me? 

Modern educational trends are moving away from traditional classroom-based course completion models and towards skills-based education. Employers today care more about skills than ever before. LawShelf digital badges conform to the Open Badge standard and are verifiable records of your skills that can easily be shared online.

How long do I retain access to the course materials?

You retain access the modules and take the final exam as long as you are a subscriber to LawShelf.

Tax Powers - Module 1 of 5

Licenses, Fees and Excise Taxes - Module 2 of 5

City, County and Local Taxes - Module 3 of 5

Employment Taxes - Module 4 of 5

Multistate Taxation Issues - Module 5 of 5

Final Exam only needs to be taken by those seeking to earn the Digital Badge credentials for this course.