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Accession Number PB2013-103448
Title Tax Gap: IRS Could Significantly Increase Revenues by Better Targeting Enforcement Resources.
Publication Date Dec 2012
Media Count 34p
Personal Author N/A
Abstract Heightened attention to federal deficits has increased pressure on IRS to reduce the tax gap--the difference between taxes owed and taxes paid on time--and better enforce taxpayer compliance. Resource limitations and concern over taxpayer burden, however, prevent IRS from auditing more than a small fraction of individual income tax returns filed. How IRS allocates these limited resources demands careful consideration. As requested, this report (1) describes how IRS allocates resources across individual taxpayer compliance enforcement programs and across types of taxpayers within each program; (2) estimates the direct revenue return on investment for the individual taxpayer enforcement programs and the extent of variation across those programs and across types of taxpayers; and (3) determines the potential for gains from shifting resources from lower-yielding programs and types of taxpayers to higher-yielding ones. To accomplish these objectives GAO analyzed IRS data on 2007 and 2008 tax returns, reviewed IRS documentation, and interviewed appropriate IRS officials.
Keywords Auditing
Internal Revenue Service(IRS)
Law enforcement
Return on investment
Tax gap
Tax returns

Source Agency General Accounting Office
NTIS Subject Category 70F - Public Administration & Government
70B - Management Practice
96A - Domestic Commerce, Marketing, & Economics
Corporate Author Government Accountability Office, Washington, DC.
Document Type Technical report
Title Note N/A
NTIS Issue Number 1308
Contract Number N/A

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