Off-Shore Tax Havens Cost MA Taxpayers $608 a Year

Media Contacts

Loopholes Allow Many Corporations to Pay Less Than Individuals and Households


Boston, April 18 – Major corporations and some individuals avoid a total of as much as $100 billion a year in federal taxes by “off-shoring” the profits they make here in the U.S. or by setting up sham headquarters in tax haven countries. As a result, Massachusetts taxpayers are left footing the bill.

According to Tax Shell Game a new Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group (MASSPIRG) report, the use of offshore tax havens results in $434 in additional tax burden for taxpayers around the country.  Here in Massachusetts it’s $608 per taxpayer.

“Today should be the last Tax Day when high-priced accountants and secret post office boxes are valued over hard work and accountability,” said Deirdre Cummings, MASSPIRG’s legislative director. “It makes no sense that small businesses, individuals and households would have to pay more in taxes than some of the largest multinational corporations like G.E. which make billions in profits, who paid little to no federal income taxes.

In the weeks and months leading up to Tax Day, Congress debated the national debt, rising deficits, and across the board cuts to a range of public priorities such as food safety inspectors, Pell grants and clean air and water programs.  MASSPIRG today called on Congress to address the deficit by closing corporate tax loopholes, rather than cutting public priorities.

Nearly two-thirds of corporations doing business in the U.S. pay no income taxes at all. Companies that received taxpayer-funded bailout money or receive lucrative government contracts and use tax havens include American Express, A.I.G, Exxon Mobil, Goldman Sachs and Pfizer.

MASSPIRG will join today at 3PM outside of Goldman Sachs, in Boston, as presents the company with a tax bill for the amount they should have paid in taxes had they not used the various tax avoidance schemes.

“Main street businesses and ordinary taxpayers without access to an army of accountants to devise elaborate tax avoidance schemes are forced to pick up the tab every year.  We’ve already paid to bail out the banks and other big corporations – is it fair to ask us to pay their taxes as well?” Cummings concluded.
To read Tax Shell Game, click here.

To learn more about the companies who lobby against reforms, read U.S. PIRG’s report, Who Slows the Pace of Tax Reform.


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MASSPIRG is a member supported, non-profit, non partisan public interested group in Massachusetts.