Taxpayer information assistance services and tax compliance behavior
The traditional "enforcement" paradigm of tax administration views taxpayers as potential criminals, and emphasizes the repression of illegal behavior through frequent audits and stiff penalties. However, an important trend in tax administration policies in recent years is the recognition that this paradigm is incomplete. Instead, a revised "service" paradigm recognizes the role of enforcement, but also emphasizes the role of tax administration as a facilitator and a provider of services to taxpayer-citizens. This research utilizes laboratory experiments to test the effectiveness of such taxpayer service programs in enhancing tax compliance. Our basic experimental setting mimics the naturally occurring environment: subjects earn income, they must choose whether to file a tax return, and they then must choose how much of their net income to report to a tax authority that may audit the subject. To investigate the effects of taxpayer services, we "complicate" these compliance decisions of subjects, and then provide "services" from the "tax administration" that allow subjects to compute more easily their tax liabilities. Our results indicate that uncertainty reduces both the filing and the reporting compliance of an individual. However, we also find that agency-provided information has a positive and significant impact on the tendency of an individual to file a tax return, and also on reporting for individuals who choose to file a return.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Andreoni, J. & Erard, B. & Feinstein, J., 1996.
9610, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
- Gary S. Becker, 1968.
"Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 76, pages 169-169.
- repec:ntj:journl:v:45:y:1992:i:no._1:p:107-14 is not listed on IDEAS
- Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-955, December.
- Steven Levitt & John List, 2007.
"What do Laboratory Experiments Measuring Social Preferences Reveal About the Real World,"
Artefactual Field Experiments
00480, The Field Experiments Website.
- Steven D. Levitt & John A. List, 2007. "What Do Laboratory Experiments Measuring Social Preferences Reveal About the Real World?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(2), pages 153-174, Spring.
- James Alm & Benno Torgler, 2011.
"Do Ethics Matter? Tax Compliance and Morality,"
Journal of Business Ethics,
Springer, vol. 101(4), pages 635-651, July.
- Joel Slemrod & Shlomo Yitzhaki, 2000.
"Tax Avoidance, Evasion, and Administration,"
NBER Working Papers
7473, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Lars P. Feld & Bruno S. Frey, 2002.
"Trust breeds trust: How taxpayers are treated,"
Economics of Governance,
Springer, vol. 3(2), pages 87-99, 07.
- Lars P. Feld & Bruno S. Frey, 2000. "Trust Breeds Trust: How Taxpayers are Treated," CESifo Working Paper Series 322, CESifo Group Munich.
- Lars P. Feld & Bruno S. Frey, "undated". "Trust Breeds Trust: How Taxpayers are Treated," IEW - Working Papers 098, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
- Cummings, Ronald G. & Martinez-Vazquez, Jorge & McKee, Michael & Torgler, Benno, 2009. "Tax morale affects tax compliance: Evidence from surveys and an artefactual field experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 447-457, June.
- Alm, James & Jackson, Betty & McKee, Michael, 1992. "Institutional Uncertainty and Taxpayer Compliance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 1018-1026, September.
- Allingham, Michael G. & Sandmo, Agnar, 1972. "Income tax evasion: a theoretical analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(3-4), pages 323-338, November.
- Frank A. Cowell, 1990. "Cheating the Government: The Economics of Evasion," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262532484, December.
- Ben Greiner, 2004. "The Online Recruitment System ORSEE 2.0 - A Guide for the Organization of Experiments in Economics," Working Paper Series in Economics 10, University of Cologne, Department of Economics.
- Clotfelter, Charles T, 1983. "Tax Evasion and Tax Rates: An Analysis of Individual Returns," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(3), pages 363-373, August.
- Gneezy, Uri & Rustichini, Aldo, 2000.
"A Fine is a Price,"
The Journal of Legal Studies,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(1), pages 1-17, January.
- Marsha Blumenthal & Charles Christian & Joel Slemrod, 2001.
"Taxpayer response to an increased probability of audit: Evidence from a controlled experiment in minnesota,"
Natural Field Experiments
00332, The Field Experiments Website.
- Slemrod, Joel & Blumenthal, Marsha & Christian, Charles, 2001. "Taxpayer response to an increased probability of audit: evidence from a controlled experiment in Minnesota," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(3), pages 455-483, March.
- Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1970. "Increasing risk: I. A definition," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 225-243, September.
- Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 1974. "Income tax evasion: A theoretical analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 201-202, May.
- Kirchler, Erich & Hoelzl, Erik & Wahl, Ingrid, 2008. "Enforced versus voluntary tax compliance: The "slippery slope" framework," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 210-225, April.
- Suzanne Scotchmer & Joel Slemrod, 1988.
"Randomness in Tax Enforcement,"
NBER Working Papers
2512, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Erard, Brian, 1993. "Taxation with representation : An analysis of the role of tax practitioners in tax compliance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 163-197, September.
- Alm, James & Jackson, Betty & McKee, Michael J., 1992. "Estimating the Determinants of Taxpayer Compliance With Experimental Data," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 45(1), pages 107-114, March.
- Erard, Brian & Ho, Chih-Chin, 2001. "Searching for ghosts: who are the nonfilers and how much tax do they owe?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 25-50, July.
- Alm, James, 1988. "Uncertain Tax Policies, Individual Behavior, and Welfare," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 237-245, March.
- Alm, James & Jackson, Betty R. & McKee, Michael, 2009. "Getting the word out: Enforcement information dissemination and compliance behavior," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(3-4), pages 392-402, April.
- Kate Krause, 2000. "Tax Complexity: Problem or Opportunity?," Public Finance Review, SAGE Publishing, vol. 28(5), pages 395-414, September.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:31:y:2010:i:4:p:577-586. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.