Tax law (1 - 10 of 195 items)
International Taxation: Information on the Potential Impact on IRS and U.S. Multinationals of Revised International Guidance on Transfer Pricing
GAO-17-103: Published: Jan 27, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 27, 2017.
In 2015, the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) issued revised guidelines, including 15 actions to help reduce base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) of multinational enterprises (MNEs). One action focuses on transfer pricing guidance with the intent of aligning MNE profits with the location of economic activity, and preventing corporations from shifting and assigning p...
Regulatory Guidance Processes: Treasury and OMB Need to Reevaluate Long-standing Exemptions of Tax Regulations and Guidance
GAO-16-720: Published: Sep 6, 2016. Publicly Released: Sep 6, 2016.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) uses a variety of documents to communicate its interpretation of tax laws to the public, but only considers Internal Revenue Bulletin (IRB) guidance to be authoritative. IRS information published outside of the IRB can help taxpayers understand tax laws and make informed decisions, but does not always include information clarifying the limitations of its use. IRS...
Inland Waterways Fuel Tax: Additional Data Could Enhance IRS's Efforts to Ensure Taxpayer Compliance
GAO-16-682: Published: Jul 29, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 29, 2016.
Based on results of audits, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) views vessel operators to be substantially in compliance with requirements to report and pay the Inland Waterways Fuel Tax (fuel tax). IRS seeks to ensure compliance by auditing quarterly excise-tax returns filed by these operators, as well as identifying operators that failed to file (nonfilers).Audits of filed returns: IRS data show...
IRS Return Selection: Wage and Investment Division Should Define Audit Objectives and Refine Other Internal Controls
GAO-16-102: Published: Dec 17, 2015. Publicly Released: Jan 13, 2016.
Three offices in the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) Wage and Investment division (W&I) are responsible for selecting returns for audit. Most returns are selected via computer systems that automatically send notices to taxpayers based on certain criteria, such as the validity of dependents. W&I program officials annually review the criteria and apply updates to the following filing season's retur...
Tax Filing Season: 2014 Performance Highlights the Need to Better Manage Taxpayer Service and Future Risks
GAO-15-163: Published: Dec 16, 2014. Publicly Released: Dec 16, 2014.
The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) processing of tax returns was timely, even though the filing season was delayed due to the 2013 government shutdown. Continued growth in e-filing allows IRS to reduce costs and issue refunds faster. Although IRS received fewer calls in 2014, the percentage of callers seeking help who received it remained low and wait times remained high compared to prior years...
Internal Revenue Service: Absorbing Budget Cuts Has Resulted in Significant Staffing Declines and Uneven Performance
GAO-14-534R: Published: Apr 21, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 21, 2014.
IRS’s appropriations have declined to below fiscal year 2009 levels and FTEs have been reduced by about 8,000 since fiscal year 2009. Planned performance in enforcement and taxpayer service has decreased or fluctuated; for example, in the fiscal year 2014 congressional justification the audit coverage target for individual examinations was 1.0 percent for fiscal year 2014, however, the target wa...
2013 Tax Filing Season: IRS Needs to Do More to Address the Growing Imbalance between the Demand for Services and Resources
GAO-14-133: Published: Dec 18, 2013. Publicly Released: Dec 18, 2013.
Despite efficiency gains from processing more tax returns electronically, adding website services, and shifting resources from enforcement, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was unable to keep up with demand for telephone and correspondence services. Access to IRS's telephone assistors remained at 68 percent from 2012. The percentage of overage paper correspondence (over 45 days old) increased to...
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...
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 Preparer Regulation: IRS Needs a Documented Framework to Achieve Goal of Improving Taxpayer Compliance
GAO-11-336: Published: Mar 31, 2011. Publicly Released: Mar 31, 2011.
Paid preparers prepare about 60 percent of all tax returns filed, and their actions significantly affect the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) ability to administer tax laws. Previously, GAO found that some preparers made significant errors in preparing tax returns and proposed stricter regulation of preparers. IRS is implementing new requirements for paid preparers that it believes will increase t...