Donald Trump paid no income tax in 2020, documents show

  • A congressional panel has released records that show Donald Trump paid no income tax in 2020.
  • The records were released after a years-long fight.
  • A spokesperson for the Trump Organization has labelled the findings ‘politically motivated’.
Donald Trump paid no income tax during the final full year of his presidency as he reported a loss from his sprawling business interests, according to tax figures released by a congressional panel.
The records, released late on Tuesday (local time) by the Democratic-led House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee after a years-long fight, show that Mr Trump’s income and his tax liability, fluctuated dramatically during his four years in the White House.

Mr Trump and his wife, Melania, paid some form of tax during all four years, the documents showed, but were able to minimise their income taxes in several years as income from Mr Trump’s businesses was more than offset by deductions and losses.

Former US president Donald Trump and his wife Melania recorded an adjusted gross income of negative A$19.3 million in 2017, leading to a net income tax of A$1,120. Source: Getty / Joe Raedle

The committee questioned the legitimacy of some of those deductions, including one for $US916 million ($1.4 billion), and members said on Tuesday the tax returns were short on details. The panel is expected to release redacted versions of his full returns in coming days.

Mr Trump during his two presidential bids and his campaign for office, even though all other .

The committee obtained the records after a years-long fight and voted on Tuesday to make them public.

A spokesman for Mr Trump said the release of the documents was politically motivated.
“If this injustice can happen to President Trump, it can happen to all Americans without cause,” Trump Organization spokesman Steven Cheung said on Wednesday.
Democrats on the panel said their review found that tax authorities did not properly scrutinise Mr Trump’s complex tax returns to ensure accuracy.
Though the United States Internal Revenue Service is supposed to audit presidents’ tax returns each year, it did not do so until Democrats pressed for action in 2019.
The IRS assigned only one agent to the audit most of the time, the panel found, and did not examine some of the deductions claimed by Trump.
Prior to taking office, Mr Trump reported heavy losses for many years from his business to offset hundreds of millions of dollars in income, according to media reports and trial testimony about his finances.

The documents released by the committee showed that pattern continued during his time in the White House.

During that time Mr Trump and his wife were liable for self-employment and household employment taxes. As a result, they paid a total of $US3 million ($A4.5 million) in taxes over those four years.
But deductions enabled them to minimise their income tax liability in several years.
In 2017, Trump and his wife reported adjusted gross income of negative $US12.9 million ($19.3 million), leading to a net income tax of $US750 ($1,120), the records showed.
They reported adjusted gross income of $US24.3 million ($36.3 million) in 2018 and paid a net tax of $US1 million ($1.5 million), while in 2019 they reported US$4.4 million ($6.6 million) of income in 2019 and paid US$134,000 ($200,143) in taxes.

In 2020, they reported a loss of US$4.8 million ($7.2 million) and paid no net income tax.

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