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    Conflicting interests - CASE STUDY

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    Conflicting interests - CASE STUDY

    Post by Admin on Fri Oct 30, 2009 1:00 pm

    Conflicting interests

    Suppose that six physicians are discovered by the IRS each to have understated his or her taxable income by over $50,000. As legal advisers to the IRS Jerry and Paul agree that all six must pay tax on the income they failed to declare at appropriately high rates on that income and substantial financial penalties. Jerry and Paul disagree, however, concerning the criminal prosecution of the doctors. Jerry believes that all six should be prosecuted and sent to prison. Paul, however, believes, that only two of the doctors should be prosecuted on the grounds that the community cannot afford to lose any more than four doctors at this time (the six doctors all live in a predominantly rural region with limited resources for medical care). Jerry disagrees strongly. He views the needs of the community for medical practitioners as irrelevant to the decision to prosecute. He contends that the evidence of criminal violations of the tax code against all six doctors is equally strong, and thus they all should be prosecuted.

    Who is right, Jerry or Paul? Explain your answer.

    Notes:

    Fourth Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl, APPE, 2/26/98

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