2017 WalletHub Tax Survey
Whatever you see it as a civic duty, a necessary evil or perhaps even cause for a few choice expletives, it’s no surprise that most of us dislike paying taxes. From the expense and hassle of the process to fears of basic math and being audited, the reasons for our April angst are varied.
But just how much do we dislike taxes and tax collectors? And does this stance affect how long we put off tax prep?
In search of answers to those questions and more, WalletHub conducted a nationally representative survey of 500 taxpayers. We asked about everything from whether they expect a refund to which divisive pop culture figures they view more or less favorably than the IRS.
Here's what we learned:
What We’d Do For A Tax-Free Future… 20% would get an “IRS” tattoo, 16% would move abroad and 10% would stop talking for six months.
Whom We Like MORE Than The IRS… Former president Barack Obama (56%) tops the list, followed by Pope Francis (50%). The IRS looks best vs. O.J. Simpson (7%) and Jared Fogle (4%).
Whom We’d Most Like To Punch… Donald Trump was the runaway winner for the individual most deserving of a pop to the kisser, while accountants’ faces are pretty safe.
Is The IRS Really Necessary? 88% of Americans think so, but 12% want it gone and most say it needs a lot of work.
Will Donald Trump’s tax reforms save us money? “No” is the runaway winner, receiving 65% of the vote.
What We’d Rather Be Doing Than Taxes… 30% would talk sex with the kids, 40% would get dirty with diapers and 12% would spend the night in jail.
Would We Hide Money Offshore? 81% people say, ‘No,’ despite the assurance of not being caught.
Our Biggest Tax Day Fears: Identity theft has a narrow lead over math mistakes, while the possibility of being audited doesn’t seem to bother us too much.
When We Plan To Pay: 1 in 5 people plan to take things down to, or past, the wire by waiting until at least April.
Deficit, Refund Or Just Right? 48% of us have erred on the side of caution and expect a big refund, while nearly 14% plan to end Tax Day in the red.
My Tax Rate Is… Too high, according to 60% of people, while a surprising 35% believe the tax landscape’s temperature is just right.
Accountants Are… Occasionally helpful in 50% of taxpayers’ minds, though 21% think they’re overpriced and 5% see them as a scam.
Full Disclosure… Nearly three-quarters of respondents think candidates for elected office should make their personal finances public.
Our Favorite Institution Is… Veterans Affairs, followed by Education and the FBI. The IRS is less popular than all but Congress.
Average Ranking - 1 (Most Liked) to 8 (Least Liked)
|1||Department of Veterans Affairs||5||Federal Reserve|
|2||Department of Education||6||White House|
This report reflects the results of a nationally representative online survey of over 500 individuals conducted on March 1, 2017 using the SurveyMonkey platform.
After all responses were collected, we normalized the data by age and gender so the panel would reflect U.S. demographics.
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