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Exactly the same thing happens in Greece. It used to be very common for shop-owners to "forget" to give you the receipt. After the crisis broke up though people are way more likely to ask for receipts as there are some incentives to do so (minor tax cuts for a specific amount of receipts etc.). Credit/debit card transactions have also tripled since 2008 or so which is good I guess. Things are different with doctors, lawyers etc. though, since virtually noone accepts cards and sometimes you might even need to argue with them to actually print you one. Thus you have some ridiculous incidents of doctors with apparent annual income of 9000 euros which is ridiculously low even for lower class standards. It's getting better, but it's a whole culture that needs to change for these incidents to cease. People using credit/debit cards is a step to the correct direction. In our case a cashless world might even be good.



Does the government not prosecute obvious cases of tax evasion (9000 euros example)? That's what would likely happen in the U.S.


It should but it doesn't (or didn't). Up to recently there was practically no investigation on such cases and tax evasion on such circles was rampant. You drive a BMW, run a private clinic in an expensive area in Athens and your annual income is 10k euros. That's OK, I mean why would you lie to me? OK, I'm probably exaggerating but you get an idea. Since 2013 or so there is some effort to audit professionals with such declared incomes but it is practically impossible to check a backlog of 20+ years of cases especially with the glacial pace that the revenue services move.




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