Should You Pay Your Taxes?
If you live in China, then you’ve got a reason.
A few months ago, one of the top actresses in China vanished from the spotlight and social media after two contracts for the same film surfaced on social media. After a months-long investigation, Fan Bingbing was fined about $70 million dollars due to her underreporting her earnings.
China pursued one of their biggest stars as a warning to the ever-growing entertainment industry which will likely surpass the US (at least as the world’s biggest movie box office) in the coming years.
Is the US as Aggressive in Pursuing Tax Evasion as China?
In other words, is it easier to get away with tax evasion in the US?
The answer is yes. Today, the IRS pursues far fewer cases on tax evasion than it did ten years ago. Last year, the IRS only brought forward 795 cases with tax fraud as the primary crime. This is a decline of one fourth since 2010.
You may be wondering, “how is there such a decline when one of the main missions of the IRS to bring forward cases against people who have tried to evade their taxes?”
There are many possible explanations for the decline in cases. One of the main explanations is the continuous cuts to the IRS’s budget since 2011. Another is the IRS’s recent shift in goals. For more information read our post “How Does Reshaping the IRS Help You?”
Learn more about Bingbing’s tax evasion in Steven Lee Myer’s piece.
You can also learn more about IRS tax evasion cases in Jesse Eisinger and Paul Kiel’s article.