Unauthorized Substance Abuse Tax

Unauthorized Substance

When illegal drugs or other contraband is seized in North Carolina, the police report the seizure to the Department of Revenue (DOR). The DOR imposes an unauthorized substance abuse tax on controlled substances (marijuana, cocaine, etc.), illicit spirituous liquor (moonshine), mash and illicit mixed beverages. The tax is due by any individual who possesses an unauthorized substance upon which the tax has not been paid, as evidenced by a stamp.

Understanding the 'Tax Stamp'

Under North Carolina statute 105-113.107, the state charges an excise tax of $3.50 for each gram of marijuana that is prepared for street use, $50 for each gram of cocaine, $50 for each group of 10 dosage units of "low-street-value drugs" (like steroids ), and $200 per gram of any other controlled substance. The state has collected more than $135 million in taxes from confiscated illegal substances since 1990, more than any other state.

Charges that typically evoke the tax stamp include felony possession of marijuana, possession with intent to sell or distribute, trafficking marijuana and manufacturing marijuana. On top of the tax, the North Carolina Department of Revenue also frequently tacks on an amount owed for interest and penalties.

If a tax assessment is not paid within a designated time, the DOR files a notice of tax lien in any county where the defendant has property. If the tax lien is not paid, the DOR often initiates proceedings to seize assets and real estate, which it can then sell at auction.

Mooresville Drug tax Lawyer

There is an appeals process, but in order to preserve your rights, you must act within a certain time frame. The lawyers at Gottholm, Ralston & Benton, PLLC, in Statesville, North Carolina, can provide you with highly personalized legal guidance to ensure that your rights are protected. Even if the time to appeal has passed, there may be an opportunity to reduce your tax liability.

Our Statesville unauthorized substance abuse tax lawyers have more than 30 years of combined experience. We understand your rights regarding the state's unauthorized substance abuse tax. Call 704-878-0757 or email us to schedule a free consultation with our attorneys.