|By June Fletcher, Naples Daily News, Fla.|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
Escalating taxes in other states are driving them to the welcoming arms of the low-tax
But people who are well-off, or only part-time residents, are often shocked to discover that just because they consider themselves
And in many cases, these states are going after residents they think should still be paying their taxes. And the states are winning.
According to the court,
But travel logs he kept showed that he was not in
Mauer, 58, declined to discuss the specifics of his case on his attorney's advice, which has cost him thousands in back taxes, interest and legal fees. But he did speak of the emotional toll.
"It's been horrible for my wife and me," he said. "I wouldn't wish this on anyone."
Despite the risk of an audit, or worse, more wealthy people than ever before are trying to establish residency in
RELATED: Take the
He's seen double the number of clients looking to become
"One of the first questions clients ask us is should they domicile in
Overall, it ranks fifth as the best state to live and do business from a tax standpoint, the foundation found, after
Conversely, the foundation found the heaviest tax burdens are generally in northern states, including
That's led to some high-profile defections, including the well-publicized departure of billionaire philanthropist and
The move saved him
"It will continue to go on as long as northern states try to make up for shortfalls in their budgets from the recession," he predicted.
The flight from high-tax states is one reason why
Minnesotans in particular are relocating to
Among other provisions,
To retain high-income taxpayers,
But tests in other states may vary, ranging from the obvious, like where bank statements are mailed, to the obscure, like where safe deposit boxes are kept.
For those who make the effort, like
The couple, who had been vacationing in the area since 2002, decided a few years ago to make the move permanent.
So they sold their
And though they still own a home in
"It's saved us thousands in taxes," he said.
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