Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Official Languages

Our furniture and other items of personalty have arrived from America.  The past few days have been spent unpacking and reorganizing; nothing particularly remarkable as far as this type of thing goes.  Last night my wife actually cooked a meal in our kitchen and served it on our dining room table, a welcome improvement from snarfing food on the run, or even eating at restaurants all the time.

The following administrative law decision from the Illinois Department of Revenue has come to my attention, especially its curious footnote: 

" 5 ILCS 460/20 states that the “official language” of the State of Illinois is English. 35 ILCS 120/7 requires that all books and records required to be kept by the Retailers Occupation Tax Act “shall be kept in the English language.” 86 Ill. Adm. Code 130.801(e) requires that books and records necessary for a determination of correct tax liability “must be kept in the English language.” In light of these provisions, it would be absurd for me to conclude that the department must issue its own documents and forms in a language other than English."

This is interesting and ironic to me because I now find myself in a jurisdiction whose official language is other than English, and my mastery of the Hebrew language leaves much to be desired.  While many of the official forms in Israel do have their English versions, official or (usually) otherwise, there still are many transactions where I must seek assistance beyond Google Translate in order to sufficiently comprehend the documents at hand.  I have had occasion (most notably but not solely the lease to our apartment) to engage a young American man, the son of a former client, whose linguistic skills and amenability to use them to supplement his income have worked to our mutual advantage.

Additionally, the Illinois provision is most out of character with what is thought of by most (including the liberals themselves) as the liberal stance -- One would think that it would be most politically incorrect in Illinois, the home state of Barack Hussein Obama (Hawaii and Kenya notwithstanding).

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home