Volume 20, Issue 1: Closing the Tax Gap

Articles

Minding the Gap: A Ten-Step Program for Better Tax Compliance

This Article sets forth a ten-step approach to understanding and minimizing the tax gap. It also examines the IRS’s current approach to the tax gap and offers suggestions to improve that approach. In steps one through three, current knowledge of the tax gap is explored, as well as how we can increase our understanding of it. In steps four and five, the manner in which success at closing the tax gap is measured and what drives IRS behavior is discussed. Read more about Minding the Gap: A Ten-Step Program for Better Tax Compliance

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 7
  • Article

Cash Businesses and Tax Evasion

This Article attempts to provide a qualitative picture of tax evasion in the small business sector. It provides details from almost 275 field study interviews with cash business owners, tax preparers, and bankers who serve cash business clients. The research suggests answers to the questions of who evades taxes, what taxes they evade, and why and how they evade taxes.  Read more about Cash Businesses and Tax Evasion

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 37
  • Article

Tax Defiers and the Tax Gap: Stopping Frivolous Squared before it Spreads

This Article addresses the impact of the conduct of illegitimate “tax defiers,” as opposed to legitimate “tax protestors,” on the Tax Gap. The Article identifies the arguments tax defiers have promoted and then highlights the consistent responses that the courts have made in rejecting these arguments. It also focuses on the potential impact tax defiers may have on the Tax Gap and details the National Tax Defier Initiative recently promulgated by the United States Department of Justice’s Tax Division to combat current and future tax defier conduct.  Read more about Tax Defiers and the Tax Gap: Stopping Frivolous Squared before it Spreads

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 69
  • Article

Refund Anticipation Loans and the Tax Gap

This Article argues that our general lack of understanding how return preparers contribute to the decision to comply or not comply with our nation’s tax laws limits the ability of policymakers to take effective administrative or legislative action to reduce the tax gap associated with returns related to refund anticipation loans (RALs). Read more about Refund Anticipation Loans and the Tax Gap

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 85
  • Article

Targeting the Tax Gap: The Case of the RAL and the Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

This Article responds to Professor Leslie Book’s conclusions regarding the ANPR and discusses the problems with assumptions underlying the ANPR. Although RALs may have adverse consequences for low-income taxpayers that would justify their regulation or elimination, the rationale found in the ANPR is not supported by available data. The Article looks at the costs to preparers and taxpayers of inaccurate refunds and erroneous refund positions along with the costs of RALs to demonstrate why more data should be obtained before a conclusion reached regarding RALS. Read more about Targeting the Tax Gap: The Case of the RAL and the Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 119
  • Article

Gap in the Employment Tax Gap

This Article explains how the official employment tax gap understates the amount of revenue lost when self-employed individuals choose to operate through a formal business entity instead of as a sole proprietor. The Article also offers a legislative proposal designed to substantially reduce these tax reduction opportunities.  Read more about Gap in the Employment Tax Gap

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 127
  • Article

Estate Tax Non-Gap: Why Repeal a Voluntary Tax

Over thirty years ago, George Cooper wrote a seminal article arguing that the estate tax at that time was largely voluntary. Many academics still use this voluntary tax rhetoric even though Congress has closed many of the avoidance techniques that Cooper has identified. This Article argues that the voluntary tax metaphor is a rhetorical device that crumbles under scrutiny. The Article asserts that that the voluntary tax metaphor has infected analysis of estate tax empirical data. Read more about Estate Tax Non-Gap: Why Repeal a Voluntary Tax

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 153
  • Article

Morals of the Marketplace: A Cautionary Essay for Our Time

This Article explores the ways in which modern finance theory and security proliferation have operated to legitimate the detachment of the security from the investment and, albeit unintentionally, to encourage their separation in practice. Read more about Morals of the Marketplace: A Cautionary Essay for Our Time

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 171
  • Article

Notes

California's Fight Against Global Warming: Finally Getting Smart About Sprawl

In 2006, with the passage of the California Global Warming Solutions ACT (AB 32), Caledonia became the first state in the nation to regulate greenhouse gases by requiring that emissions be reduced to their 1990 levels by 2020. AB 32, however, did not give the state authority to regulate the sprawling development that contributes to increased greenhouse gas emissions. A recent bill, SB 372, which some have called a “sea change” in California’s land-use laws, attempts to give the state these missing tools. Read more about California's Fight Against Global Warming: Finally Getting Smart About Sprawl

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 193
  • Note

Legislating to Keep Children Safe at School: Are Sex Offenders Really Worse Than Murderers?

In June 2008, the New York state legislature enacted a statute that requires the Education Commission to automatically and immediately revoke the teaching license and certification of any teacher convicted of a sex offense. According to New York Senate Majority leader Joseph Bruno, the New York statute is simply a matter of  “common sense.” Although the statue may be a matter of “common sense,” this Note proposes that it is not “common sense” to limit the statue to sex offenses. Read more about Legislating to Keep Children Safe at School: Are Sex Offenders Really Worse Than Murderers?

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 203
  • Note

Stemming the Subprime Crisis: The North Carolina Foreclosure Prevention Project

Michael Miller

In August 2008, Governor Mike Easley of North Carolina signed House Bill 2623 and established the North Carolina Foreclosure Prevention Project, a program he described as “the first of its kind in the nation.” This Note analyzes the content of HB 2623 to show that it significantly improves upon the legislative interventions that other states have implemented in response to the supreme mortgage crisis. Read more about Stemming the Subprime Crisis: The North Carolina Foreclosure Prevention Project

  • January 2009
  • 20 Stan.L.& Pol'y Rev. 213
  • Note

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