Voluntary compliance (21 - 30 of 92 items)
Federal Tax Collection: Potential for Using Passport Issuance to Increase Collection of Unpaid Taxes
GAO-11-272: Published: Mar 10, 2011. Publicly Released: Apr 11, 2011.
According to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), as of the end of fiscal year 2010, the balance of reported unpaid federal taxes was about $330 billion. Given the many challenges that IRS faces, the enforcement of the tax laws and the tax code is on GAO's list of high-risk areas. GAO was asked to (1) determine, to the extent possible, the magnitude of known unpaid federal taxes for individuals who...
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...
Small Businesses: Tax Compliance Benefits and Opportunities to Mitigate Costs on Third Parties of Miscellaneous Income Reporting Requirements
GAO-11-218T: Published: Nov 18, 2010. Publicly Released: Nov 18, 2010.
Third parties, often businesses, reported more than $6 trillion in miscellaneous income payments to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in tax year 2006 on Form 1099-MISC. Payees are to report this income on their tax returns. It has been long known that if these payments are not reported on 1099-MISCs, it is less likely that they will be reported on payee tax returns. In 2010, the reporting requir...
First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit: Taxpayers' Use of the Credit and Implementation and Compliance Challenges
GAO-10-166T: Published: Oct 22, 2009. Publicly Released: Oct 22, 2009.
This testimony discusses taxpayers' use of the First-time Homebuyer Credit (FTHBC) and the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) implementation and compliance challenges. As an important part of the recent economic stimulus efforts, Congress enacted the FTHBC to assist the struggling real estate market and encourage taxpayers to purchase their first home. The credit initially was enacted by the Housing...
Tax Administration: Opportunities Exist for IRS to Enhance Taxpayer Service and Enforcement for the 2010 Filing Season
GAO-09-1026: Published: Sep 23, 2009. Publicly Released: Oct 16, 2009.
Preparing for the tax filing season is a significant undertaking for Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The filing season is when most individuals file their tax returns, receive refunds, and contact IRS if they have questions. As returns are received, IRS begins a series of automated compliance checks to correct errors on tax returns and ensure that refunds are justified. For example, IRS rejects el...
Tax Gap: Limiting Sole Proprietor Loss Deductions Could Improve Compliance but Would Also Limit Some Legitimate Losses
GAO-09-815: Published: Sep 10, 2009. Publicly Released: Oct 13, 2009.
Sole proprietors, who own unincorporated businesses by themselves, underreported their net income by 57 percent or $68 billion for 2001, according to the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) most recent estimate. The underreporting includes both understated receipts and overstated expenses and may result in losses that can be deducted against income from other sources, such as wages. GAO was asked to...
Home Mortgage Interest Deduction: Despite Challenges Presented by Complex Tax Rules, IRS Could Enhance Enforcement and Guidance
GAO-09-769: Published: Jul 29, 2009. Publicly Released: Aug 31, 2009.
The home mortgage interest deduction is the third most expensive federal income tax expenditure, with the government expected to forgo about $80 billion of revenue for the deduction in 2009.1 Subject to various limitations, taxpayers may deduct interest on home-secured loans, such as mortgages, mortgage refinancings, and home equity loans, including those taken as lump sum amounts and home equity...
Tax Compliance: Opportunities Exist to Improve Tax Compliance of Applicants for State Business Licenses
GAO-09-569: Published: Jun 15, 2009. Publicly Released: Jul 16, 2009.
The California Department of Industrial Relations, Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE), requires applicants for California business licenses in three industries--farm labor contracting, garment manufacturing, and car washing and polishing--to be in compliance with federal employment tax obligations to qualify. Based on questions about whether the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is fully...
Tax Administration: IRS Should Evaluate Penalties and Develop a Plan to Focus Its Efforts
GAO-09-567: Published: Jun 5, 2009. Publicly Released: Jul 6, 2009.
Civil tax penalties are an important tool for encouraging compliance with tax laws. It is important that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) administers penalties properly and determines the effectiveness of penalties in encouraging compliance. In response to a congressional request, GAO determined (1) whether IRS is evaluating penalties in a manner that supports sound penalty administration and vo...
Tax Gap: Requiring Information Reporting for Charitable Cash Contributions May Not Be an Effective Way to Improve Compliance
GAO-09-555: Published: May 14, 2009. Publicly Released: Jun 15, 2009.
Individual taxpayers who misreport charitable cash contributions they deduct on their tax returns contribute to the tax gap, the difference between tax amounts taxpayers report and pay voluntarily and on time and the amounts they should pay under the law. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) most recently estimated a gross tax gap of $345 billion for tax year 2001. One approach that tends to result...