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Tax compliance costs: a business administration perspective

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  • Eichfelder, Sebastian
  • Schorn, Michael

Abstract

The paper analyses the relationship of tax compliance costs and business strategy. Due to instruments, like information technology, simplified cash accounting or outsourcing compliance activities to tax advisers, private businesses have a set of strategies to optimize their tax compliance cost burden. Under the assumption of rational choice a private business should choose a cost-optimal administration strategy. In spite of that we find empirical evidence for small German businesses using only insufficiently the support of external tax advisers. Therefore, a considerable number of small businesses in Germany could reduce their compliance cost burden by a higher degree of outsourcing tax processes. In contrast, we find no significant evidence for a cost reduction by an electronic data interchange with the tax and social insurance authorities or by a simplified cash accounting method for tax purposes.

Suggested Citation

  • Eichfelder, Sebastian & Schorn, Michael, 2009. "Tax compliance costs: a business administration perspective," Discussion Papers 2009/3, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:fubsbe:20093
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Guyton, John L. & O'Hare, John F. & Stavrianos, Michael P. & Toder, Eric J., 2003. "Estimating the Compliance Cost of the U.S. Individual Income Tax," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 56(3), pages 673-688, September.
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    3. Kopczuk, Wojciech & Pop-Eleches, Cristian, 2007. "Electronic filing, tax preparers and participation in the Earned Income Tax Credit," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(7-8), pages 1351-1367, August.
    4. Marsha Blumenthal & Joel Slemrod, 1995. "The compliance cost of taxing foreign-source income: Its magnitude, determinants, and policy implications," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 2(1), pages 37-53, February.
    5. Koellinger, Philipp & Minniti, Maria & Schade, Christian, 2007. ""I think I can, I think I can": Overconfidence and entrepreneurial behavior," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 502-527, August.
    6. Tran-Nam, Binh & Evans, Chris & Walpole, Michael & Ritchie, Katherine, 2000. "Tax Compliance Costs: Research Methodology and Empirical Evidence from Australia," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 53(n. 2), pages 229-52, June.
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    12. Guyton, John L. & Korobow, Adam K. & Lee, Peter S. & Toder, Eric J., 2005. "The Effects of Tax Software and Paid Preparers on Compliance Costs," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 58(3), pages 439-448, September.
    13. Tran-Nam, Binh & Evans, Chris & Walpole, Michael & Ritchie, Katherine, 2000. "Tax Compliance Costs: Research Methodology and Empirical Evidence From Australia," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 53(2), pages 229-252, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Rosemary Marcuss & George Contos & John Guyton & Patrick Langetieg & Allen Lerman & Susan Nelson & Brenda Schafer & Melissa Vigil, 2013. "Income Taxes and Compliance Costs: How Are They Related?," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 66(4), pages 833-854, December.
    2. Sebastian Eichfelder & Chantal Kegels, 2012. "Compliance costs caused by agency action? Empirical evidence and implications for tax compliance," Schumpeter Discussion Papers sdp12005, Universitätsbibliothek Wuppertal, University Library.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Tax complexity; tax compliance costs; bureaucracy costs; tax administration; administration strategy; business strategy; outsourcing; contracting out; e-filing; electronic data interchange; cash accounting;

    JEL classification:

    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • L23 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Organization of Production
    • L24 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Contracting Out; Joint Ventures

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