Understanding the Barriers to Filing Taxes and Claiming the EITC

Understanding the experiences of EITC-eligible, non-filing Californians is an important first step to addressing barriers to take-up.


Why are eligible Californians not receiving the EITC? To address barriers to filing taxes and claiming the EITC, it’s important to  center the voices and experiences of those who choose not to file taxes. 

Research Project

In partnership with the California Franchise Tax Board, California Department of Social Services, and The People Lab, we are fielding surveys to non-filers to understand their past experiences with filing. Follow-up will be conducted via paper surveys, online surveys, and text messages. More research on familiarity with tax filing and awareness of the EITC among non-filers, as well as more qualitative research on the psychological and compliance costs these households face in claiming the credit, will help inform future evaluations of higher-touch interventions that might be able to overcome those barriers.

Research Team

Professor Elizabeth Linos (Principal Investigator) and Aparna Ramesh



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