October 28,2022

Press Contact:

Ashley Schapitl

Wyden Statement on IRS Tax Gap Report

Washington, D.C.— Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today issued the following statement on the new IRS Tax Gap report: 

“With at least half a trillion in unpaid taxes annually, the new IRS Tax Gap estimates confirm the urgent need for investments in the IRS to ensure taxes owed are taxes paid.

“Importantly, IRS acknowledges that it underestimates tax avoidance by the wealthiest Americans and corporations. The IRS made clear that the report does not adequately capture sophisticated avoidance schemes favored by billionaires, including partnerships, other pass-through entities, and secret offshore accounts. Here’s a key point: Noncompliance in these areas is extrapolated from audits, and audits in these areas are at historic lows. There’s clearly far more avoidance at the top that IRS needs to pursue.

“Detecting these schemes requires the hiring of highly-skilled accountants and examiners and a focus on areas like complex partnership structures and foreign accounts, which I have urged IRS to do. A laser-like focus on these areas will ensure IRS makes significant progress in ensuring wealthy tax cheats pay what they owe.

“Workers who earn wages and salaries have a 99 percent rate of compliance with our tax laws. They shouldn’t continue to foot the bill for billionaires with offshore accounts in Switzerland.”