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THE PROBLEMS OF ASSESSMENT AND COLLECTION OF TAX IN NIGERIA (A CASE STUDY OF DELTA STATE BOARD OF INTERNAL REVENUE)
This project is embarked upon to determine the problems such as tax avoidance and evasion that affects tax assessment and collection in Delta State which has deny the Delta State Government of revenue due it from tax. It was particularly pertinent as government could not embark on meaningful project with the federal allocation only given that the internal revenue generated is no minimal. The general purpose of the study is to identify the problems associated with the assessment and collection of tax and also collection of tax. The research method applied in the data is that of questionnaire and oral interview questionnaire were administered which constitute the major research instrument and supplemented by oral interview conducted among tax officials and payers in the state. Data analyzed using the simple percentage and oral interview method. This word found among other that people avoid and evade tax payment due to high tax rate lack of social amenities and poor relationship between tax payers and tax authorities which has result to low internal revenue to he government. A conclusion was drawn on the factors that cause tax avoidance and evasion and a recommendation was also made that (1) there should be tax authorities (2) that government should provides social amenities (3) that there should be regular enlightenment of tax payers to tax matters.
1.1 Background of the Study
Assessment and collection of tax has been problem to various government especially Delta state board of internal revenue and for this reason, government is expected by his citizen to provides essential services which has population control, rising of salary for employees, water, good roads, electricity, good schools etc. in view of this demand on government by the citizenry, the government has created means of raising revenue to take care of the responsibility on ground
There are various sources of government revenue but one important source is through the imposition of compulsory very on various incomes and properties of individuals known as tax.
Tax as defined by Kiabel (2001) is a compulsory payment imposed on the incomes, profit or wealth of the individual or corporate bodies by the government for its sustained and there is no guaranteed compulsory benefit.
Furthermore, there are various types of taxes collected by government such as direct tax and indirect tax, whereas direct tax is a tax imposed on the income of individuals, that of the indirect tax is the imposed by the government on goods and services, and there taxes are been collected by some persons called tax collector who are duel authorized officials off the state services or state board of internal revenue.
They are involved in taxing steps to make the tax payers to pay their tax under duress, their forceful effort may even reluctant or recalcitrant tax payers to pay their tax by selling their properties, they cannot sell properties they are not portable eg. House, land, etc. without an order from the high court.
They do not handle money or actually collect tax but their effort result in tax payers paying their taxes.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The government has the responsibilities of providing the basic necessities of life such as road, water, electricity, shelter and school etc. all these mentioned above can only be achieved through the use of revenues. There are various sources of government revenue among which taxation plays a major role. Taxes contribute a large proportion in the total revenue operated by the government.
An effective and efficient assessment and collection of tax is affected by the problems of tax avoidance and tax evasion. The particles of these problems create low government revenue thereby causing some difficulties in the provision of essential needs for the citizens.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The general purpose of this study is to identify the problem association and collection of tax and also to improve the system of assessment and collection of tax. However for the above purpose to be achieved, the study will focus on the following
- To find out the problems of tax assessment and collection in delta state.
- To know the system of tax assessment and collection in delta state.
- To identify the different means of avoiding tax in delta state.
1.4 Research Question
The following research question will be answered in the cause of this study:
- What are the problems of the tax collection?
- How can this problem of tax collection are shall?
- Tax evaders are supposed to be punished according to law but are they actually punished?
- Do you know that tax constitute a major source of income that government use for the development of your area?
- Why are every taxable person assumed to be taxed?
1.5 Significance of the Study
This research intends to highlights the importance of assessment and collection of tax by the government and it will be beneficial to tax payers, to the state board of internal revenue and also to the public. It will up the taxpayer in knowing the benefit of that tax payment and the constituency of non-payment of tax and it will also help the state board of internal revenue in knowing the weakness of the tax collected.
The findings from this research work will also be beneficial to employee and bosses who do not recognized the important of the role played by the tax to the government.
1.6 Scope and Delimitation of the Study
The study focused on the problems associated with assessment and collection of tax delta state.
1.7 Limitation of the Study
There is possibility that certain problems and difficulties will be encounter as constraints in carrying out a research of this nature. These constraints constitute limitation of this study and are worth mentioned. Thus paramount among such constraints are:
First the constraints of time and funds, the time required to complete this study is rather, short and the finance is sufficient because the researcher is compelled by the condition share is available time and finance between normal semester and the research work. Considering the finance fact of the constraints, the study seems to be rather expensive because of the research financial or fear of embarrassment and other negative actions.
Thirdly, there is still the constraint of lack of relevant data to carry out this work successfully.
Secondly, the administration of the questionnaire is limited to willing or persuaded persons alone fall for a study of this nature.
1.8 Definition of Terms
a. Assessment: It simply means a system whereby the relevant authority compute the tax payers’ liabilities based on his income and assess him on the amount to pay.
b. Basis Period: This is an accounting period, which is related to any given year of assessment.
c. Tax Avoidance; This arise in a situation where the taxpayer arranges his financial affairs in a way that will make him pay the least possible amount of tax without infringing the legal rules.
d. Tax Base: Is the legal description of the object on which the tax applies.
e. Tax Evasion: This is an outright dishonest action whereby the tax payer endeavours to reduce his tax liability through the use of illegal means such as deliberate understatement of his income
f. Tax Rake: this is an amount paid on tax in money worth or the application rate of tax applied on that tax base.
g. Tax Returns: Is a statement prepared by the tax payer showing the total income from all sources.
h. Tax Shifting: Is the transferring of tax burden from one economic agent to another.