Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The cost of tax cheats

How much do corporate tax cheats cost? In the US, over US$180 billion a year:

US taxpayers would need to pay an average of $1,259 more a year to make up the federal and state taxes lost to corporations and individuals sheltering money in overseas tax havens, according to a report.

"Tax haven abusers benefit from America's markets, public infrastructure, educated workforce, security and rule of law - all supported in one way or another by tax dollars - but they avoid paying for these benefits," US Public Interest Research Group said in the report released today, the deadline for filing 2013 taxes.

"Instead, ordinary taxpayers end up picking up the tab, either in the form of higher taxes, cuts to public spending priorities, or increases to the federal debt," it said.

In total, the United States loses $150 billion in federal revenue and another $34 billion in state revenue annually because of money parked in tax havens, the Boston-based consumer advocacy group concluded.

Tax cheats are simply social parasites. Its time we ended the practice, shut down the tax havens and the loopholes they depend on, and made them pay their fair share.