Encyclopedia of Law and Economics

2019 Edition
| Editors: Alain Marciano, Giovanni Battista Ramello

Tax Amnesty

  • Carla MarcheseEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-7753-2_24


Tax amnesty is the opportunity given to taxpayers to write off an existing tax liability (including interests and fines) by paying a defined amount. Such offers are usually presented as being exceptional and available for only a limited period of time. Amnesties can either be general or restricted to certain groups of taxpayers or taxes, and they routinely include the waiving of criminal and civil penalties.

Prevalence and Types of Tax Amnesties

Both local and central authorities grant tax amnesties. Over the past 50 years, the central governments of some developing countries (e.g., Argentina, Colombia, Brazil, India, the Philippines, Turkey) have repeatedly offered amnesties (Le Borge and Baer 2008), as have the central governments of developed countries plagued by specific economic problems such as recession, financial crisis, and large public debt (e.g., Ireland, Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal). Many developing and developed countries have also occasionally resorted to...

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dipartimento di Giurisprudenza e Scienze Politiche, Economiche e Sociali, POLIS InstituteUniversità degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale “Amedeo Avogadro”AlessandriaItaly