Australian Family Tax Reform and the Targeting Fallacy
Patricia F. Apps
University of Sydney - Faculty of Law; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich - Faculty of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research)
Australian Economic Review, Vol. 43, Issue 2, pp. 153-175, June 2010
Over recent decades, Australia's highly progressive, individual-based taxation of families has been replaced by a system that tends towards joint taxation with an inverted U-shaped rate scale. The reform has been implemented by introducing family-income-targeted child payments (now Family Tax Benefit Part A) and by lowering tax rates on higher incomes. The new system has shifted the burden of taxation to two-earner families on low and average wages and, in particular, to working married mothers as second earners. For reasons of fairness and efficiency, we propose returning to more progressive individual taxation and universal family payments.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 23Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: June 4, 2010
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