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IELTS Writing Task 2 - Tax Liability (Agree or Disagree Question)

Updated: Jul 16


Some people believe that they should be able to keep all the money they earn and should not pay taxes to the state.


Do you agree or disagree? (01/06/2024)


SAMPLE ESSAY:


It is often argued that working individuals should be able to retain  all their earnings instead of paying income taxes. I largely disagree with this notion as taxation  is necessary for the maintenance of public services, the reduction of income inequality, and the promotion of positive social behaviors.


Firstly, taxes play a crucial role in helping governments build and maintain infrastructure such as roads, bridges, and public transportation systems. This important benefit is evident  in countries like Sweden and Denmark, where high taxes usually translate into extensive social services such as free healthcare and education, significantly enhancing the quality of life  for all citizens. Without tax revenue, these services would be underfunded , probably leading to a decrease in public welfare  and overall social progress.


Besides funding public services, taxation is an effective tool for reducing income inequality. Progressive tax systems , where higher earners pay a larger percentage of their income, could redistribute wealth more equally . For instance, in progressive tax regimes  like those in Canada and Australia, tax revenues are used to support welfare programs for the less fortunate, such as unemployment benefits  and housing assistance. This redistribution helps to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor , fostering a more balanced and fair society.


Lastly, taxes can be used to promote positive behaviors, which are essential for public health and environmental sustainability . Serving as a prime example, the United States has levied higher taxes on  tobacco and alcohol to reduce the consumption rates of such products, leading to better public health outcomes. Similarly, tax incentives  for renewable energy investments in this nation have encouraged the adoption  of environmentally friendly technologies, contributing to the fight against climate change.


In conclusion, although retaining all personal earnings may seem advantageous on an individual level, I argue that taxation should still be  mandatory  thanks to its benefits in terms of public services, income inequality resolution, and positive social behaviors.



 

VOCABULARY

  • retain (v) = giữ lại 

  • taxation (n) = sự đánh thuế 

  • evident (adj) = có thể thấy rõ 

  • quality of life (phrase) = chất lượng cuộc sống 

  • underfunded (adj) = thiếu kinh phí (để hoạt động)

  • public welfare (phrase) = phúc lợi xã hội 

  • progressive tax system / regime (phrase) = hệ thống / chế độ thuế lũy tiến (thuế tăng dần khi thu nhập của người nộp thuế tăng)

  • redistribute wealth more equally (phrase) = phân phối lại của cải, tài sản một cách công bằng hơn

  • unemployment benefits (phrase) = trợ cấp thất nghiệp 

  • bridge the gap between the rich and the poor (phrase) = thu hẹp khoảng cách giữa người giàu và người nghèo

  • environmental sustainability (phrase) = tính bền vững môi trường 

  • levy taxes on sth (phrase) = đánh thuế đối với một sản phẩm nào đó

  • tax incentives (phrase) = ưu đãi thuế (giảm bớt thuế nhằm khuyến khích một hành vi hoặc hoạt động cụ thể)

  • adoption (n) = sự áp dụng 

  • mandatory (adj) = bắt buộc



 

BRAINSTORMING 


Personal opinion: People should still pay taxes to the state


Body 1: The benefits of taxes in terms of public services

  • Taxes help governments build and maintain infrastructure like roads, bridges, and public transportation

  • Example: Sweden and Denmark use high taxes to provide free healthcare and education → improved quality of life for citizens


Body 2: The benefits of taxes in terms of reducing income inequality

  • Progressive tax systems (e.g. Canada and Australia) have higher earners pay more to fund welfare programs → the narrowing gap between rich and poor → a fairer society


Body 3: The benefits of taxes in terms of positive social behaviors

  • Taxes can encourage positive behaviors, which improve public health and protect the environment

  • Example: In the United States:

  • Higher taxes on tobacco and alcohol help reduce their use → improved public health

  • Tax incentives for renewable energy encourage the use of green technologies → reduced impacts of climate change



 

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