TAXES: One-Way Mistakes

After checking 160,000 income-tax statements, the Bureau of Internal Revenue concluded that one in four returns are wrong by at least $2, and almost always in the taxpayer's favor. Worst offenders are farmers, professional men and owners of small businesses. The trouble lies not in innocent mistakes of addition, the bureau found, but in incorrect statements of income, too generous personal deductions, bogus exemptions for dependents. Altogether such "errors," as the bureau politely calls them, probably cheated the Government out of $1 billion.

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