Unequal Burdens in EITC Compliance

Karie Davis-Nozemack

Georgia Tech - College of Management

March 8, 2012

Law and Inequality: A Journal of Theory and Practice, Vol. 31, 2012

Lower income means harsher treatment from the government for taxpayers who claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). EITC claimants are audited more often than any taxpayers other than the very wealthy. More concerning, however, is that the IRS audits EITC claimants by correspondence examination in a manner that unduly burdens access to this refundable tax credit, a credit that often keeps lower income workers out of poverty.

Improper payment law brings increased scrutiny to federal programs that issue erroneous payments. Because the EITC is alleged to have substantial improper payments, it is subject to federal improper payment law, which adds administrative process and burdens in hopes of diminishing erroneous payments. While other scholars have noted the relationship between improper payment law and the EITC, this article takes the unique view that improper payment law, instead of burdening EITC administration, could provide relief to the Service’s onerous EITC compliance methods.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 38

Keywords: EITC, tax, Taxation, correspondence examinations, improper payment

JEL Classification: K1, K34

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Date posted: December 4, 2011 ; Last revised: April 14, 2012

Suggested Citation

Davis-Nozemack, Karie, Unequal Burdens in EITC Compliance (March 8, 2012). Law and Inequality: A Journal of Theory and Practice, Vol. 31, 2012. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1967696 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1967696

Contact Information

Karie Davis-Nozemack (Contact Author)
Georgia Tech - College of Management ( email )
800 West Peachtree St., NW
Atlanta, GA 30308-1149
United States
HOME PAGE: http://mgt.gatech.edu/directory/faculty/davis-nozemack/index.html
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