A multiyear campaign to slash the IRS budget has left it understaffed and on the defensive. That’s been good news for tax cheats, the rich, and big corporations — but not for the poor.
The social media behemoth is about to face off with the tax agency in a rare trial to capture billions that the IRS thinks Facebook owes. But onerous budget cuts have hamstrung the agency’s ability to bring the case.
For years, the company has moved billions in profits to Puerto Rico to avoid taxes. When the IRS pushed it to pay, Microsoft protested that the agency wasn’t being nice. Then it aggressively fought back in court, lobbied Congress and changed the law.
The IRS Tried to Crack Down on Rich People Using an “Abusive” Tax Deduction. It Hasn’t Gone So Well.
The tax agency, Justice Department and Congress have all taken aim at a much-abused deduction exploited by wealthy investors. Yet the crackdown is having minimal impact, costing the Treasury billions.
Congress asked the IRS to report on why it audits the poor more than the affluent. Its response is that it doesn’t have enough money and people to audit the wealthy properly. So it’s not going to.
As the agency’s ability to audit the rich crumbles, its scrutiny of the poor has held steady in recent years. Meanwhile, a new study shows that audits of poor taxpayers make them far less likely to claim credits they might be entitled to.
Until the budget-starved agency is restored, corporations and the wealthy will easily fend off attempts to increase the rates they pay.
¿Qué personas tienen mayor probabilidad de ser sometidas a auditoría? ¿Alguien que gane $20 mil dólares o alguien que gane $400 mil?
Si usted reclama el crédito por ingreso del trabajo (Earned Income Tax Credit – EITC), cuyo beneficiario promedio gana menos de $20,000 dólares anuales, tiene una mayor probabilidad de enfrentarse a un escrutinio de parte del IRS comparado con alguien que gane veinte veces más. ¿Cómo es que un beneficio para los trabajadores pobres se ha estado ejecutando en contra de ellos?
Six years after it was excoriated for allegedly targeting conservative organizations, the agency has largely given up on regulating an entire category of nonprofits. The result: More dark money gushes into the political system.
Following up on ProPublica stories about the IRS, lawmakers pressed the commissioner on the agency’s disproportionate focus on auditing the working poor while examinations of the rich plummeted.
Why are the rural poor audited more frequently than other groups, he asks, citing ProPublica. Another Democratic senator adds, “There are two tax codes in America, and there are also two enforcement regimes.”
Ten years ago, the tax agency formed a special team to unravel the complex tax-lowering strategies of the nation’s wealthiest people. But with big money — and Congress — arrayed against the team, it never had a chance.
A new study shows dramatic regional differences in who gets audited. The hardest hit? Poor workers across the country.
Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and three fellow senators say the agency should do more to tackle financial crimes, even in the face of crippling budget cuts.
If you claim the earned income tax credit, whose average recipient makes less than $20,000 a year, you’re more likely to face IRS scrutiny than someone making twenty times as much. How a benefit for the working poor was turned against them.
The IRS is underfunded and understaffed. One result: audits of the wealthy are rapidly declining.
An eight-year campaign to slash the agency’s budget has left it understaffed, hamstrung and operating with archaic equipment. The result: billions less to fund the government. That’s good news for corporations and the wealthy.
Millions of low-income families rely on the earned income tax credit. We took an IRS audit notice sent to one taxpayer who’d claimed the EITC and annotated it to help explain what it really means.
Audits and criminal referrals are down sharply since Congress cut the tax agency’s budget and management changed priorities.
ProPublica would like to hear from people who have worked at the Internal Revenue Service or are otherwise knowledgeable about tax enforcement.