Norms and Tax Evasion


Norms about tax evasion may influence the individual’s decision whether to evade taxes or not in two ways: First, most people feel the need to justify their actions to themselves. The individual’s own norms about tax evasion will therefore affect his decisions whether to evade taxes or not. Second, most people are also influenced by what they perceive to be socially acceptable behavior, at least among people who are important to them. The individual’s perception of other people’s norms can therefore also be of importance when we want to understand his decision of whether to evade taxes or not. This paper uses survey data from 2003. The results confirm the hypothesis that norms affect peoples’ propensity to evade taxes.

  • Skatteetaten
  • Erling Barth, Alexander W. Cappelen, Tone Ognedal
  • Frischsenteret