Alcohol tax stamp dating
The tax on documents, also commonly known as stamp duty, is one of the oldest uses of revenue stamps, probably being invented in Spain, and introduced (or re-invented) in the Netherlands in the 1620s, then reaching France in 1651 and England in 1694.Governments enforce the payment of the tax by making unstamped documents unenforcable in court.
Revenue stamps often look very similar to postage stamps, and in some countries and time periods it has been possible to use postage stamps for revenue purposes.Although India is only one of several countries that have used tax stamps on legal documents, it was one of the most prolific users.The practice is almost entirely stopped now, partly due to the prevalence of forgeries which cost the issuing government revenue.Some countries such as Great Britain have issued stamps valid for both postage and revenue, but this practice is now rare.Many different methods have been used to cancel revenue stamps, including pen cancels, inked handstamps, perforating, embossing, hole punching or simply tearing.In many countries, tobacco and alcohol are taxed by the use of excise stamps.
For instance, the producer may buy stamps from the government which are then affixed to each bottle of alcohol or packet of cigarettes to show that tax has been paid.
The tax has been applied to contracts, tenancy agreements, wills etc.
A pre-printed revenue stamp appeared on many hundis of India.
Revenue stamps are stamps used to collect taxes and fees.
They are issued by governments, national and local, and by official bodies of various kinds.
From around 1900, United States revenue stamps were required to be mutilated by cutting, after being affixed to documents, and in addition to being cancelled in ink.