Tax professionals commonly search large databases of information to identify tax authority necessary to provide compliance and planning advice to clients. Prior research indicates that tax professionals' information search processes are subject to confirmation bias in the direction of client preferences and that this bias can lead professionals to make overly aggressive recommendations. However, very little is known about how time pressure may affect tax professionals' judgment and decision-making processes. This study contributes to practice and to the time pressure and decision bias literatures by providing theory and evidence that increasing time pressure leads to confirmation bias during tax information search and that time pressure enhanced confirmation bias affects recommendations through professionals' assessments of the evidential support for the client-preferred position. With an understanding of how time pressure can influence confirmation bias in information search, professionals and their firms can take steps to manage time pressure and its potential biasing effects.
The Interactive Effect of Time Pressure and Client Preference on Tax Professionals' Information Search Emphasis, Judgments and Recommendations
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Robert Ewing, Brian C. Spilker; The Interactive Effect of Time Pressure and Client Preference on Tax Professionals' Information Search Emphasis, Judgments and Recommendations. Journal of the American Taxation Association 2021; doi: https://doi.org/10.2308/JATA-19-048
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