Thursday, October 22, 2009

Tax Fact of the Day

From my income tax reading for today:
“The deduction for dependents offers an interesting case study of tax evasion. For many years, audits revealed fraudulent dependency deductions, with anecdotal evidence of taxpayers claiming their pets as dependents (and succeeding by escaping audit). In the mid-1980s, a clever IRS employee named John Szilagyi came up with the idea of requiring Social Security numbers for dependents. The year the reform was implemented, the number of dependents dropped by seven million, increasing tax revenues by nearly $3 billion, or almost $30 a taxpayer!”
From: Federal Income Taxation, 15th ed. by Klein, Bankman, Shaviro, and Stark, p. 407-8

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