Uniformity Clause Law and Legal Definition

Uniformity Clause refers to the clause in the U.S. constitution, requiring the uniform collection of federal taxes. Article I, Clause 1 of the U.S. constitution gives the federal government of the U.S. its power of taxation. The uniformity clause was intended to prevent the legislature and local officials from granting preferential tax treatment to influential property owners and to protect the citizen against unequal and consequently unjust taxation.

The U.S. legal system includes uniformity clauses found in individual state Constitutions as well as the federal Constitution.

In Executive Life Ins. Co. v. Commonwealth, 147 Pa. Commw. 105 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 1992), the court held that “the Uniformity Clause means that the classification by the legislative body must be reasonable and the tax must be applied with uniformity upon similar kinds of business or property and with substantial equality of the tax burden to all members of the same class.”