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Collusive Tax Evasion by Employers and Employees: Evidence from a Randomized Field Experiment in Norway

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  • Marie Bjørneby
  • Annette Alstadsæter
  • Kjetil Telle

Abstract

Third-party reporting and employers’ tax withholding are powerful compliance mechanisms, as long as the employer and employee do not collude to evade. Using data from randomly assigned on-site audits among 2,462 Norwegian firms, we provide evidence of collusive tax evasion. We find that firms assigned to be audited increased their subsequent wage reporting on behalf of their employees by 18 percent relative to firms assigned to the control group. The effect is more pronounced among small firms with few employees. Our results document the limitations of third-party reporting, but also that these limitations can be counteracted by relatively inexpensive on-site audits.

Suggested Citation

  • Marie Bjørneby & Annette Alstadsæter & Kjetil Telle, 2018. "Collusive Tax Evasion by Employers and Employees: Evidence from a Randomized Field Experiment in Norway," CESifo Working Paper Series 7381, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_7381
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    Cited by:

    1. Arun Advani, 2022. "Who does and doesn't pay taxes?," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 43(1), pages 5-22, March.
    2. Bjørneby, Marie & Alstadsæter, Annette & Telle, Kjetil, 2021. "Limits to third-party reporting: Evidence from a randomized field experiment in Norway," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 203(C).
    3. Kaisa Kotakorpi & Satu Metsälampi & Topi Miettinen & Tuomas Nurminen, 2019. "The effect of reporting institutions on tax evasion:Evidence from the lab," Discussion Papers 127, Aboa Centre for Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    collaborative tax evasion; collusive tax evasion; random audits; undeclared work; third-party reporting;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E26 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Informal Economy; Underground Economy
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • H32 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Firm

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