The United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced an aggressive campaign to put pressure on 1,600 millionaires and 75 large corporations who owe hundreds of millions of dollars in back taxes.
IRS Commissioner Daniel Werfel said that with increased federal funding and the help of artificial intelligence tools, the agency now has the tools to go after wealthy people who have evaded taxes.
“It is particularly frustrating for those who pay their taxes on time to see that wealthy taxpayers do not,” Werfel said in a press call announcing the plan. He revealed that 1,600 millionaires, each owing at least $250,000 in back taxes, and 75 large corporations with assets averaging $10 billion are the targets of the new “compliance campaign.”
Werfel explained that recruiting new employees and AI tools developed by IRS employees and contractors play a big role in identifying wealthy fraudsters. The agency is scrambling to demonstrate the positive results of President Joe Biden’s Democratic administration’s cash infusion even as Republican lawmakers seek to take away some of that money.
“The new tools help us discover patterns and trends that we haven’t seen before, and the result is that we can look with greater confidence and find out where big companies are hiding revenue,” he said.
A team of academic economists and IRS researchers found in 2021 that the top 1% of workers do not disclose more than 20% of their income to the IRS.
The new tax collection campaign could begin as early as October.
“We need to hire more staff,” said Werfel. “We have a very busy fall ahead of us.”