Secular Hungary

Secular Hungary

Government: 90% of Taxpayers Are Church Members

The Hungarian parliament has modified law CXXIV of 1997 (in the 129th paragraph of law CCXII of 2012 which deals with various issues regarding the national health service), which now rules that 0,9% of income taxes are to be handed over to the churches. Similarly to the Italian system, Hungarian taxpayers offer 1% of their income tax to a religious community of the secular alternative(s) provided by the state (another 1% is to be offered to any civil organisation). Despite the media efforts of the bigger churches to get not only their follower’s tax but also that of the wider public, taxpayers are not very keen on dedicating their taxes. In 2011, 38% of taxpayers offered 1% of their income tax to one of the religious communities (this was before the number of possible beneficiaries was cut down to 31), 9% preferred the secular alternative, and 53% decided not to decide. Their 1% is now practically given to the religious communities enjoying church privileges according to the new church law.

UPDATE: sorry, I got the percentage wrong. Out of 3,44 million taxpayers, 1047906 dedicated 1% of their tax to a church, i.e. 30,47%.


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