Enhancing Tax Compliance Through Coercive and Legitimate Power of Authorities

41 Pages Posted: 5 Jun 2013

See all articles by Eva B. Hofmann

Eva B. Hofmann

University of Vienna

Katharina Gangl

University of Goettingen (Gottingen); Zeppelin University

Erich Kirchler

University of Vienna - Faculty of Psychology

Jennifer Stark

Department of Applied Psychology: Work, Education, Economy

Date Written: March 19, 2013

Abstract

Strict enforcement and supportive procedures by tax authorities are often discussed as means of enhancing tax compliance. However, it is still not clear how these strategies influence tax compliance. The extended “slippery-slope framework” postulates that coercive power and legitimate power lead to tax compliance, albeit by leading the taxpayer along different motivational paths. The exercising of coercive power reduces citizens’ implicit trust in the authorities and increases the need for enforced compliance and perceptions of an antagonistic climate between tax authorities and taxpayers. Legitimate power is assumed to increase reason-based trust, voluntary cooperation and perceptions of a service climate. Two experimental studies that have manipulated qualities of power either separately or simultaneously have suggested that legitimate power affects intended tax compliance in line with theoretical predictions, whereas the effect of coercive power is less clear.

Keywords: tax compliance, coercive power, legitimate power, trust, “slippery-slope framework”

Suggested Citation

Hofmann, Eva B. and Gangl, Katharina and Kirchler, Erich and Stark, Jennifer, Enhancing Tax Compliance Through Coercive and Legitimate Power of Authorities (March 19, 2013). WU International Taxation Research Paper Series No. 2013 - 01. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2235594 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2235594

Eva B. Hofmann (Contact Author)

University of Vienna ( email )

Christies gate 12
Bergen, 5015
Austria
00431427747336 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://homepage.univie.ac.at/eva.hofmann/

Katharina Gangl

University of Goettingen (Gottingen) ( email )

Platz der Gottinger Sieben 3
Gottingen, D-37073
Germany

Zeppelin University ( email )

Am Seemooser Horn 20
Friedrichshafen, Lake Constance 88045
Germany

Erich Kirchler

University of Vienna - Faculty of Psychology ( email )

Universitaetsstrasse 7
Vienna, A-1010
Austria
+43 1 42 7747332 (Phone)
+43 1 42 7747339 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://homepage.univie.ac.at/erich.kirchler

Jennifer Stark

Department of Applied Psychology: Work, Education, Economy ( email )

Universitaetsstrasse 7
Vienna, A-1010
Austria

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