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Tax Policy and Administration (141 - 150 of 1,534 items)
Tax Administration: IRS's Information Exchanges with Other Countries Could Be Improved through Better Performance Information
GAO-11-730: Published: Sep 9, 2011. Publicly Released: Oct 7, 2011.
With trillions of dollars in cross-border financial activity, U.S. tax authorities and others around the world exchange information with each other to administer and enforce compliance with the tax laws of their respective countries. GAO was asked to (1) identify and describe all income tax treaties and other such agreements between the United States and other countries, (2) describe the volume of...
Business Systems Modernization: Internal Revenue Service's Fiscal Year 2011 Expenditure Plan
GAO-12-26: Published: Oct 6, 2011. Publicly Released: Oct 6, 2011.
The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) Business Systems Modernization (BSM) program is a multi-billion dollar, high-risk, highly complex effort that involves the development and delivery of a number of modernized systems that are intended to replace the agency's aging business and tax processing systems. As required, IRS submitted its fiscal year 2011 expenditure plan in May 2011 to the House and Se...
E-Filing Tax Returns: Penalty Authority and Digitizing More Paper Return Data Could Increase Benefits
GAO-12-33: Published: Oct 5, 2011. Publicly Released: Oct 5, 2011.
The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) goal is to receive 80 percent of all major types of tax returns electronically by 2012. Legislation passed in November 2009 supports the 80 percent goal for individual income tax returns by requiring tax return preparers who file more than 10 individual returns per year to file them electronically, or e-file. GAO was asked to review IRS's implementation of this...
Tax Whistleblowers: Incomplete Data Hinders IRS's Ability to Manage Claim Processing Time and Enhance External Communication
GAO-11-683: Published: Aug 10, 2011. Publicly Released: Sep 9, 2011.
The Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 expanded the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) whistleblower program, increasing rewards for submitting information on others' tax underpayments to up to 30 percent of collected proceeds. The expanded program targets tax underpayments over $2 million and could reduce the gap between taxes owed and taxes paid. IRS's Whistleblower Office has received over 1,...
Tax Preparer Regulation: Improving Tax Return Accuracy Depends on IRS's Use of New Requirements
GAO-11-868T: Published: Jul 28, 2011. Publicly Released: Jul 28, 2011.
Paid preparers are a cornerstone of the U.S. tax system, as they prepare approximately 60 percent of all tax returns filed, and their actions have an enormous impact on the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) ability to administer tax laws effectively. In previous work, GAO found that taxpayers were not always served well by their paid preparers, and GAO proposed stricter oversight of preparers. In 2...
Value-Added Taxes: Potential Lessons for the United States from Other Countries' Experiences
GAO-11-867T: Published: Jul 26, 2011. Publicly Released: Jul 26, 2011.
Dissatisfaction with the federal tax system has led to a debate about U.S. tax reform, including proposals for a national consumption tax. One type of proposed consumption tax is a value-added tax (VAT), widely used around the world. A VAT is levied on the difference between a business's sales and its purchases of goods and services. Typically, a business calculates the tax due on its sales, subtr...
Investment Management: IRS Has a Strong Oversight Process but Needs to Improve How It Continues Funding Ongoing Investments
GAO-11-587: Published: Jul 20, 2011. Publicly Released: Jul 20, 2011.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) relies extensively on information technology (IT) to carry out its mission. For fiscal year 2012, IRS requested about $2.67 billion for IT. Given the size and significance of these investments, GAO was asked to evaluate IRS's capabilities for managing its IT investments. To address this objective, GAO reviewed IRS policies and procedures and assessed them using G...
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: IRS Should Expand Its Strategic Approach to Implementation
GAO-11-719: Published: Jun 29, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 29, 2011.
This report discusses the briefing we gave on June 8, 2011, as well as subsequent comments from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). We gave this briefing in response to Congressional request that we assess IRS's planning to implement its responsibilities under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The report (1) describes IRS's PPACA responsibilities and effective dates and (2) a...
Tax Gap: Complexity and Taxpayer Compliance
GAO-11-747T: Published: Jun 28, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 28, 2011.
Taxes are necessary because they fund the services provided by government. Several years ago, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) estimated that the gross tax gap--the difference between taxes owed and taxes paid on time--was $345 billion for 2001. In the face of large and growing deficits, it is important to seek out potential causes and solutions to the tax gap. Achieving high levels of voluntary...
Tax Administration: Information on Selected Foreign Practices That May Provide Useful Insights
GAO-11-439: Published: May 24, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2011.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and foreign tax administrators face similar issues regardless of the particular provisions of their laws. These issues include, for example, helping taxpayers prepare and file returns, and assuring tax compliance. Understanding how other tax administrators have used certain practices to address common issues can provide insights to help inform deliberations about...