California – Driver License Suspensions for Taxpayers With Unpaid Taxes

SALT Report 2971 – California State Board of Equalization Chairman Jerome Horton addressed New York’s new tax initiative which authorizes the motor vehicle department to suspend the driver licenses of any New York taxpayer who has unpaid taxes totaling $10,000 or more.  BOE Chairman Horton advises that California has a similar law currently in place.

Assembly Bill 1424 requires the Department of Motor Vehicles to suspend the driver’s license of any person whose name appears on the list of the 500 largest tax delinquencies in the state.  The legislation also allows other state licensing agencies, such as the Department of Fish and Wildlife or the State Bar of California, to suspend, refuse to issue, or refuse to renew the license of anyone on that list.

While California’s program only affects taxpayers with tax debts of $100,000 or more, not $10,000 like New York’s program, that may change as the program is considered an easy way to generate much needed revenues.  For example, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo stated that his initiative would increase New York tax collections by $26 million this year, and by as much as $6 million for each subsequent year.

Chairman Horton advises that the BOE has provisions in place for taxpayers who are having difficulties paying their taxes. These programs will help taxpayers avoid losing their driver or business licenses and avoid paying penalties and interest.

For Further Information

California State Board of Equalization – Need Help Paying Your Taxes?

SALT Report 2808 – Driver License Suspensions for Tax Delinquents to Begin in New York