Tax returns (1 - 10 of 71 items)
Information Technology: Management Needs to Address Reporting of IRS Investments' Cost, Schedule, and Scope Information
GAO-15-297: Published: Feb 25, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 25, 2015.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has made limited progress in improving the reliability and reporting of cost, schedule, and scope performance information–the agency has partially implemented two of GAO's five prior recommendations, but not yet addressed the remaining three (see table). IRS's implementation of these recommendations is critical in ensuring that Congress receives the reliable in...
Identity Theft and Tax Fraud: Enhanced Authentication Could Combat Refund Fraud, but IRS Lacks an Estimate of Costs, Benefits and Risks
GAO-15-119: Published: Jan 20, 2015. Publicly Released: Feb 19, 2015.
Identity Theft (IDT) Refund Fraud Cost Estimates. The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) fraud estimates met several GAO Cost Guide best practices, such as documenting data sources and detailing calculations. However, the estimates do not reflect the uncertainty inherent in measuring IDT refund fraud because they are presented as point estimates. Best practices suggest that agencies assess the effec...
IRS Correspondence Audits: Better Management Could Improve Tax Compliance and Reduce Taxpayer Burden
GAO-14-479: Published: Jun 5, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2014.
The notices the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) sends during correspondence audits have misled taxpayers by providing unrealistic time frames on when IRS would respond to their correspondence. For example, notices stated that IRS would respond within 30 to 45 days when it has consistently taken several months to do so. Further, as of early 2014, IRS data show that it had not responded timely to mor...
Partnerships and S Corporations: IRS Needs to Improve Information to Address Tax Noncompliance
GAO-14-453: Published: May 14, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 13, 2014.
The full extent of partnership and S corporation income misreporting is unknown. The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) last study of S corporations, using 2003-2004 data, estimated that these entities annually misreported about 15 percent (an average of $55 billion for 2003 and 2004) of their income. IRS does not have a similar study for partnerships. Using IRS data and the study results, GAO deriv...
IRS 2015 Budget: Long-Term Strategy and Return on Investment Data Needed to Better Manage Budget Uncertainty and Set Priorities
GAO-14-605: Published: Jun 12, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 12, 2014.
Since fiscal year 2010, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) budget has declined by about $900 million. As a result, funding is below fiscal year 2009 levels.IRS Appropriations Fiscal Years 2009 through 2014 and Fiscal Year 2015 Requested AppropriationStaffing has also declined by about 10,000 full-time equivalents since fiscal year 2010, and performance has been uneven. For example, between fiscal...
Offshore Tax Evasion: IRS Has Collected Billions of Dollars, but May be Missing Continued Evasion
GAO-13-318: Published: Mar 27, 2013. Publicly Released: Apr 26, 2013.
As of December 2012, the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) four offshore programs have resulted in more than 39,000 disclosures by taxpayers and over $5.5 billion in revenues. The offshore programs attract taxpayers by offering a reduced risk of criminal prosecution and lower penalties than if the unreported income was discovered by one of IRS's other enforcement programs. For the 2009 Offshore Vol...
Identity Theft: Total Extent of Refund Fraud Using Stolen Identities is Unknown
GAO-13-132T: Published: Nov 29, 2012. Publicly Released: Nov 29, 2012.
Understanding the extent and nature of identity theft-related refund fraud is important to crafting a response to it, but Internal Revenue Service (IRS) managers recognize that they do not have a complete picture. Program officials said that one of the challenges they face in combating this type of fraud is its changing nature and how it is concealed. While perfect knowledge about cases and who is...
Adoption Tax Credit: IRS Can Reduce Audits and Refund Delays
GAO-12-98: Published: Oct 20, 2011. Publicly Released: Nov 21, 2011.
The federal adoption tax credit, established in 1996, was amended in 2010. These amendments included making the credit refundable (meaning taxpayers could receive payments in excess of their tax liability) and increasing the maximum allowable credit to $13,170 of qualified adoption expenses for tax year 2010. As of August 20, 2011, taxpayers filed just under 100,000 returns, claiming about $1.2 bi...
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...
Information Reporting: IRS Could Improve Cost Basis and Transaction Settlement Reporting Implementation
GAO-11-557: Published: May 19, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 20, 2011.
Effective implementation of two 2008 laws by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) could increase taxpayers' voluntary compliance. Those laws require reporting to IRS and taxpayers of cost basis for sales of certain securities and of transaction settlement information (i.e., merchants' income from payment cards or third party networks). In response to a congressional request, GAO (1) assessed IRS's i...