Income taxes (51 - 60 of 188 items)
Refund Anticipation Loans
GAO-08-800R: Published: Jun 5, 2008. Publicly Released: Jun 5, 2008.
Taxpayers who do not want to wait for their tax refunds from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may choose to obtain refund anticipation loans (RAL). RALs are short-term, high-interest bank loans that are advertised and brokered by both national chain and local tax preparation companies. Although the annual percentage rate (APR) on RALs can be over 500 percent, they allow taxpayers to receive cash...
Tax Administration: 2007 Filing Season Continues Trend of Improvement, but Opportunities to Reduce Costs and Increase Tax Compliance Should be Evaluated
GAO-08-38: Published: Nov 15, 2007. Publicly Released: Dec 17, 2007.
In 2007, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will spend over $3 billion to process returns and provide taxpayer service. Effective service can reduce taxpayers' burden of complying with tax laws and, many tax experts believe, may improve compliance. GAO was asked to assess IRS's performance relative to 2007 goals and prior years' performance including identifying actions that might generate efficie...
Advance Earned Income Tax Credit: Low Use and Small Dollars Paid Impede IRS's Efforts to Reduce High Noncompliance
GAO-07-1110: Published: Aug 10, 2007. Publicly Released: Aug 31, 2007.
The Advance Earned Income Tax Credit (AEITC) allows individuals to receive a portion of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) in their paychecks, instead of receiving all of it when filing their year-end tax return. Limited research has been conducted on the AEITC since GAO last examined it in the early 1990s. GAO was asked to determine (1) how many individuals received the AEITC compared with the E...
Tax Gap: A Strategy for Reducing the Gap Should Include Options for Addressing Sole Proprietor Noncompliance
GAO-07-1014: Published: Jul 13, 2007. Publicly Released: Aug 13, 2007.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) estimates that $68 billion of the annual $345 billion gross tax gap for 2001 was due to sole proprietors, who own unincorporated businesses by themselves, underreporting their net income by 57 percent. A key reason for this underreporting is well known. Unlike wage and some investment income, sole proprietors' income is not subject to withholding and only a porti...
Tax Compliance: Challenges in Ensuring Offshore Tax Compliance
GAO-07-823T: Published: May 3, 2007. Publicly Released: May 3, 2007.
Offshore tax evasion is difficult for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to address. IRS examines tax returns to deal with offshore evasion that has occurred. IRS's Qualified Intermediary (QI) program seeks to foster improved tax withholding and reporting. GAO was asked to testify on two topics. First, GAO was asked to provide information on (1) the length of, and assessments from, IRS's examinati...
Using Data from the Internal Revenue Service's National Research Program to Identify Potential Opportunities to Reduce the Tax Gap
GAO-07-423R: Published: Mar 15, 2007. Publicly Released: Apr 19, 2007.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) most recently estimated that the gross tax gap--the difference between what taxpayers pay in taxes voluntarily and on time and what they should pay under the law--reached $345 billion for tax year 2001. The tax gap arises when taxpayers fail to comply with their individual income, corporate income, employment, estate, or excise tax obligations through (1) underre...
2007 Tax Filing Season: Interim Results and Updates of Previous Assessments of Paid Preparers and IRS's Modernization and Compliance Research Efforts
GAO-07-720T: Published: Apr 12, 2007. Publicly Released: Apr 12, 2007.
The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) tax filing season performance is a key indicator of how well IRS serves taxpayers. This year's filing season was expected to be risky because of tax system changes, including the telephone excise tax refund (TETR) which can be requested by all individuals and entities that paid the excise tax. GAO was asked to describe IRS's service to taxpayers so far this fil...
Taxpayer Service: State Experiences Indicate IRS Would Face Challenges Developing an Internet Filing System with Net Benefits
GAO-07-570: Published: Apr 5, 2007. Publicly Released: Apr 12, 2007.
Some states and countries allow taxpayers to prepare and file tax returns on their Internet Web sites at no charge, an option not available to federal taxpayers. Such a service might mitigate the concerns taxpayers have about current electronic filing options, which require filing through a third party and may involve fees. Increased electronic filing would reduce IRS's paper processing costs, red...
Internal Revenue Service: Procedural Changes Could Enhance Tax Collections
GAO-07-26: Published: Nov 15, 2006. Publicly Released: Nov 15, 2006.
GAO previously testified that federal contractors abused the tax system with little consequence. While performing those audits, GAO noted that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) records sometimes contained inaccurate or outdated tax information that prevented IRS from taking appropriate collection actions against those contractors, including submitting their tax debt to the Federal Payment Levy Pr...
Tax Compliance: Opportunities Exist to Reduce the Tax Gap Using a Variety of Approaches
GAO-06-1000T: Published: Jul 26, 2006. Publicly Released: Jul 26, 2006.
The tax gap--the difference between the tax amounts taxpayers pay voluntarily and on time and what they should pay under the law--has been a long-standing problem in spite of many efforts to reduce it. Most recently, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) estimated a gross tax gap for tax year 2001 of $345 billion and estimated it would recover $55 billion of this gap, resulting in a net tax gap of $2...