Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/156674
Authors: 
Pätzold, Jörg
Winner, Hannes
Year of Publication: 
2016
Series/Report no.: 
WIFO Working Papers 526
Abstract: 
This paper provides evidence of evasion in the context of a widely used commuter tax allowance, and explores evasion spillovers as a determinant of the individual compliance decision. For this purpose, we exploit discontinuities in the commuter allowance scheme and employ a research design resting on a large panel of individual tax returns. We find that around 30 percent of all allowance claims are overstated and, consistent with deliberate tax evasion, we observe sharp reactions of tax payers to thresholds where the allowance discretely jumps to a higher amount. Further, we use variation in job changes to uncover spillover effects from the work environment on the individual compliance decision. These effects appear to be asymmetric: job changers moving to companies with a higher fraction of cheaters increase their cheating. In contrast, movers to companies with a lower fraction of cheaters tend not to alter their reporting behaviour. We provide suggestive evidence that the spillover has more to do with an information environment, but can ultimately not reject other behavioural explanations such as asymmetric persistence of norms.
Subjects: 
Tax Evasion
Self-Reporting
Tax Deductions
Spillover Effects
JEL: 
H24
H26
D83
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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