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Audit State Dependent Taxpayer Compliance: Theory And Evidence From Colombia

Author

Listed:
  • James Alm

    () (Tulane University)

  • James C. Cox

    () (Georgia State University)

  • Vjollca Sadiraj

    () (Georgia State University)

Abstract

We develop and analyze a dynamic model of individual taxpayer compliance choice that predicts "audit state dependent taxpayer compliance," by distinguishing between the implications of forward-looking versus myopic versus naïve behavior. We then test experimentally the audit state dependent model by reporting the results from the first tax compliance experiment run in Colombia. Consistent with previous studies as well as theoretical predictions, we find that subjects' compliance rates increase with greater enforcement, especially the audit rate. We also find more novel results, both theoretically and empirically: fine rates should be increased after an audit to discourage otherwise-increased underreporting, and "nudging" myopic individuals toward reporting a constant rather than a fluctuating proportion of income would benefit both the taxpayer and the tax authority.

Suggested Citation

  • James Alm & James C. Cox & Vjollca Sadiraj, 2019. "Audit State Dependent Taxpayer Compliance: Theory And Evidence From Colombia," Working Papers 1907, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:tul:wpaper:1907
    as

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    File URL: http://repec.tulane.edu/RePEc/pdf/tul1907.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Greenberg, Joseph, 1984. "Avoiding tax avoidance: A (repeated) game-theoretic approach," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 1-13, February.
    2. James Cox & Vjollca Sadiraj & Ulrich Schmidt, 2015. "Paradoxes and mechanisms for choice under risk," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 18(2), pages 215-250, June.
    3. Kirchler,Erich, 2007. "The Economic Psychology of Tax Behaviour," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521876742, January.
    4. Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-955, December.
    5. 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.
    6. 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 107-14, March.
    7. Frank A. Cowell, 1990. "Cheating the Government: The Economics of Evasion," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262532484, September.
    8. James Alm, 2012. "Measuring, explaining, and controlling tax evasion: lessons from theory, experiments, and field studies," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 19(1), pages 54-77, February.
    9. Fochmann, Martin & Kroll, Eike B., 2014. "The effects of rewards on tax compliance decisions," arqus Discussion Papers in Quantitative Tax Research 163, arqus - Arbeitskreis Quantitative Steuerlehre.
    10. Cragg, John G, 1971. "Some Statistical Models for Limited Dependent Variables with Application to the Demand for Durable Goods," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 39(5), pages 829-844, September.
    11. Alm, James & Jacobson, Sarah, 2007. "Using Laboratory Experimentsin Public Economics," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 60(1), pages 129-152, March.
    12. Alm, James & Jackson, Betty & McKee, Michael J., 1992. "Estimating the Determinants of Taxpayer Compliance With Experimental Data," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 45(1), pages 107-114, March.
    13. James Alm & Benno Torgler, 2011. "Do Ethics Matter? Tax Compliance and Morality," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 101(4), pages 635-651, July.
    14. John D. Hey & Luca Panaccione, 2018. "Dynamic decision making: what do people do?," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Experiments in Economics Decision Making and Markets, chapter 10, pages 235-273, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    15. Richard M. Bird & James M. Poterba & Joel Slemrod (ed.), 2005. "Fiscal Reform in Colombia: Problems and Prospects," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026202585x, September.
    16. Nigar Hashimzade & Gareth D. Myles & Binh Tran-Nam, 2013. "Applications Of Behavioural Economics To Tax Evasion," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(5), pages 941-977, December.
    17. Rickard, J A & Russell, A M & Howroyd, T D, 1982. "A Tax Evasion Model with Allowance for Retroactive Penalties," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 58(163), pages 379-385, December.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Tax compliance; nudges; laboratory experiments.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior

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