Many more strapped Americans will skip out on tax bills this year, analysts tells Reuters, spending on everyday needs instead. “We’ve seen a huge rise in what we call the rookie delinquent taxpayer,” says one who expects a 280% jump. “They are incredibly scared, and they have no idea what’s going to happen to them because, God bless them, they’ve never owed before.”
“Folks are not paying their taxes because they are spending it on necessary living expenses,” says an accountant. Of course, the IRS knows what it’s up against. “We recognize the economic realities that are out there,” its commissioner says. “We’re available to work with people.” But procedures for collecting back taxes are out of date, making the process impossible for many to navigate.