WTF does race have to do with taxes? : Code Switch You finally get through the confusing, stressful work of doing your taxes only to hear back from the IRS: you're being audited. And it turns out that your race plays a big role in whether you get that letter, how much you might owe the IRS, which tax breaks you can get, and even which benefits you can claim.

WTF does race have to do with taxes?

WTF does race have to do with taxes?

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It may not seem like it at first, but race is also a part of our taxes and who gets audited. LA Johnson/Getty/design by NPR hide caption

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LA Johnson/Getty/design by NPR

It may not seem like it at first, but race is also a part of our taxes and who gets audited.

LA Johnson/Getty/design by NPR

You finally get through the confusing, stressful work of doing your taxes only to get a notice in the mail from the IRS: you're being audited. It turns out that your race plays a big role in whether you get that letter and a lot more about your taxes, like how much you might owe the IRS, which tax breaks you can get, and even which benefits you can claim.

In this episode, we're looking at the racial landmines in our tax code with Dorothy A. Brown, a tax expert and author of The Whiteness Of Wealth: How The Tax System Impoverishes Black Americans And How To Fix It. Her work over the past few decades laid the groundwork for the first research study released earlier this year uncovering the racial disparities in how the IRS audits taxpayers. We also hear from Daniel Ho, the Stanford professor who led that study.

Christina Cala, Olivia Chilkoti, Dalia Mortada provided production and editing support. James Willetts engineered this episode.