Taxpayer Identity Disclosure and Tax Planning Schemes Usage Decisions among Income Earners from Kumasi Metropolis of Ghana
This study is against the backdrop that most tax authorities place much premium on taxpayer identification numbers (TIN) as evidenced by its legislations in almost all tax jurisdictions including Ghana as TIN helps in tax enforcement and compliance; collection; administration;
and integrated computerization of the tax system across the jurisdiction. Recent calls all over the world for TIN implementation is being met with resistance from some income earners and taxpayers. Tax administrators mostly misconstrued this resistance as tendency to conceal income or mitigate tax liabilities. As to whether income earner or taxpayer’s willingness to disclose his/er identity or otherwise has a bearing on Tax planning, avoidance strategies or schemes (TPASS) usage decisions remain unanswered in literature. This study, therefore explores this grey area of tax administration by empirically examining this relationship using survey research design that depended on self-administered questionnaire to collect data from a sample of 158 randomly selected income earners from Kumasi Metropolis as respondents. The results of the study established that, although there is a fairly good relationship between identity disclosure and thoughts of using TPASS and actual use, it cannot adequately explain
TPASS usage decisions of taxpayers in general. This suggests that taxpayers’ willingness to disclose or otherwise of his/er name, TIN, and location to tax officials or authority may not in any way influence his/er TPASS usage in mitigating tax burdens. The policy implications stemming from these findings is that tax authorities should find a better alternative of getting taxpayers to freely disclose their incomes instead of concentrating on TIN disclosure if they want to achieve their revenue targets.