What is the difference between duty and tax?

A duty and a tax are similar in which they are the revenues generated by the government at the state and federal levels in order to remain a functioning entity. A duty is a kind of misc. tax that is only levied upon goods and services, but mostly just goods imported from a foreign country and manufactured from within our country. There is no law in place that punishes those who fail to pay a duty, if there is reasonable cause. A duty is also not placed on an individual person, so, therefore, cannot be considered a full tax. Now a tax is everything a duty is but it is bestowed on the individual taxpayer. They are levied by the government in order to fulfill their obligations to the people of the country. Taxes are the foundation for how the government generates its revenue. Failure to pay taxes is punishable by law in the form of penalty fees, and/or jail time.

Related Tax Questions