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Judith Freedman delivers talk on Business Tax: Public Debate and Future Trends

Judith Freedman, Professor of Taxation Law, visited Hong Kong in March for the Oxford Asia alumni weekend and whilst there also gave a talk at HK University’s Faculty of Law, organised by the Taxation Law Research Programme (TLRP) and the Asian Institute of International Financial Law […]

Judith Freedman delivers talk on Business Tax: Public Debate and Future Trends

Judith Freedman, Pinsent Masons Professor of Taxation Law, visited Hong Kong in March for the Oxford Asia Alumni Weekend and whilst there also gave a talk at HK University’s Faculty of Law, organised by the Taxation Law Research Programme (TLRP) and the Asian Institute of International Financial Law […]

Pinsent Masons Chair in Tax Law

photo of Judith Freedman

From September 2013, the statutory Chair in Tax Law will be known as the Pinsent Masons Chair, acknowledging the valuable support of international law firm Pinsent Masons […]

Publications

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Journal Articles

2014

J Freedman, 'Designing a General Anti-Abuse Rule: Striking a Balance ' (2014) IBFD Asia- Pacific Tax Bulletin 165

2013

J Freedman, 'Creating new UK institutions for tax governance and policy making: progress or confusion?' [2013] British Tax Review 373

G Loutzenhiser, 'Tax Avoidance, Private Companies and the Family' (2013) Cambridge Law Journal (forthcoming)

2012

J Freedman, 'GAAR as a process and the process of discussing the GAAR' [2012] British Tax Review

J Freedman and John Vella, 'Revenue Guidance: The Limits of Discretion and Legitimate Expectations' (2012) Sweet and Maxwell Ltd. Law Quarterly Review.This material is reproduced by agreement with the Publishers

J Vella, 'The Financial Transaction Tax Debate: Some Questionable Claims' (2012) Volume 47 Intereconomics 90

2011

J Freedman, 'Responsive Regulation, Risk and Rules: Applying the Theory to Tax Practice' (2011) 44 UBC Law Review

G Loutzenhiser, 'Operational integration of income tax and National Insurance Contributions' [2011] British Tax Review 361

2010

J Freedman, 'GAAR: challenging assumptions' (2010) Tax Journal [...]

The current `informal engagement' to explore whether there is a case for the GAAR may very well result in no action and this would be a relief for many in the tax community. But before dismiss ing the idea, it is worth considering what the alternatives might be and whether a carefully crafted GAAR resulting from thorough consultation and with appropriate safeguards might not be preferable.


2009

J Freedman, 'A GANTIP. Was it really such a bad idea?' (2009) The Tax Journal

J Freedman, G Loomer and J Vella, 'Corporate Tax Risk and Tax Avoidance: New Approaches' [2009] British Tax Review 74 [...]

The relationship between tax authorities and large corporate taxpayers is a concern world-wide as can be seen from the 2008 OECD Study into the Role of Tax Intermediaries. In the United Kingdom, HMRC have been developing a risk rating approach to tax risk management as part of their Review of Links with Large Business. The approach is designed to promote an enhanced relationship between HMRC and the taxpayer, based on trust and transparency. The objectives include the improvement of resource allocation and the encouragement of companies to consider their position so as to achieve the benefits of low risk rating, which may involve altering their tax planning strategy. In addition, new approaches to tax avoidance legislation such as targeted anti-avoidance rules and principles-based legislation are being introduced or considered. This article discusses a survey of tax directors in which the authors used detailed tax planning scenarios to investigate the views of tax directors on the impact and success or otherwise of these new approaches. The views of tax directors are only one factor in judging the success of these developments, but given that one aim of current tax policy is an enhanced relationship with corporate taxpayers, directors’ views are significant in assessing the progress being made.


ISBN: 0007-1870

J Freedman, 'Section 93 and Schedule 46 - duties of senior accounting officers of large companies' [2009] British Tax Review 620

J Vella, J Freedman and G Loomer, 'Corporate Tax Risk and Tax Avoidance: New Approaches ' [2009] British Tax Review 74

2008

J Freedman, 'Small Business Tax- Where do we go from here?' (2008) Tax Adviser

2007

J Freedman, 'Interpreting Tax Statutes: Tax Avoidance and the Intention of Parliament' (2007) 123 (Jan) Law Quarterly Review Sweet & Maxwell and reproduced here with permission 53

J Freedman and C. Crawford, 'Small Companies Again - Section 3 Finance Act 2007' (2007)

G Loutzenhiser, 'Income Splitting and Settlements: Further Observations on Jones v Garnett' [2007] British Tax Review 693 [...]

The author contributes to the discussion on the family business income-splitting case Jones v Garnett. The article begins with an examination of the settlements legislation, focusing on the key definitions, namely “arrangement”, “settlor” and “outright gift”, as well as the common law “bounty” requirement and considers how these definitions apply in the context of family businesses. In the 2007 Pre-Budget Report the Government announced it will be launching a consultation on new legislation to prevent tax-motivated income splitting involving dividends and partnership profits. The article concludes with a discussion of various alternatives available to the Government for addressing the income-splitting issue raised by the case, as well as the more favourable tax and national insurance contribution treatment generally accorded unearned income as compared to earned income


2006

J Freedman, 'Why Taxing the Micro-business is not simple - A Cautionary Tale from the 'Old World' (2006) 2 Journal of the Australasian Tax Teachers Association 58

2005

J Freedman, 'Converging Tracks? Recent Developments in Canadian and UK Approaches to Tax Avoidance' (2005) 53 Canadian Tax Journal 1038 [...]

Analysis of the Canadian and UK courts' approaches to general principles of tax avoidance


ISBN: 0008-5111

2004

J Freedman, 'Accounting Standards: A Panacea?' (2004) 38278 The Tax Journal 9 [...]

Draws on an earlier article, Aligning Taxable Profits and Accounting Profits: Accounting standards, legislators and judges, and refers to a paper delivered by Professor Wolfgang Shoen.


J Freedman, 'Defining Taxpayer Responsibility: In Support of a General Anti-Avoidance Principle' [2004] British Tax Review 332

E J F Simpson, 'The Ramsay Principle: a Curious Incident of Judicial Reticence?' [2004] British Tax Review 358 [...]

An examination of the constitutional constraints upon the judiciary in the development of tax law; and an argument (i) that they have been misunderstood, and (ii) that, if properly understood, a legislated GAAR (general anti-avoidance rule) would be unnecesary.


ISBN: 0007-1870

2003

J Freedman, 'One Size Fits All - Small Business and Competitive Legal Forms' (2003) Vol 3 part I The Journal of Corporate Law Studies 123 [...]

Analysis of proposals of Company Law Review on small business law reform: based on paper presented to conference on corporate law reform at Cambridge Centre for Corporate and Commercial Law July 2002.


ISBN: 1473-5970

J Freedman, 'Tax and Corporate Responsibility' (2003) 37774 The Tax Journal [...]

Brief summary of inaugural lecture delivered May 2003 analysing the need for a general anti-avoidance principle in tax law and discussing the significance of certainty in tax law.


ISBN: 0954-7274

2002

J Freedman and others, 'The Limited Liability Partnership: Pick and Mix or Mix up?' [2002] 37500 Journal of Business Law 475 [...]

Comment on new Limited Liability Partnership Legislation- policy and technical content. An update and development of article written for Journal of Corporation Law in 2001.


ISBN: 0021-9460

G Loutzenhiser, 'Prescribed Share Concerns When Employee Stock Options Are Exercised During a Takeover Bid' (2002) 13(9) Taxation of Executive Compensation and Retirement 131

2001

J Freedman, 'Limited Liability Partnerships in the UK - Do They Have A Role For Small Firms?' (2001) 26 Journal of Corporation Law 897 [...]

Contribution to special issue based on international symposium on unincorporated business entities in Tilburg 2001.


ISBN: 0360-795X

J Freedman, 'Personal Service Companies-' [2001] British Tax Review [...]

Current Note


ISBN: 0007-1870

G Loutzenhiser, 'New Federal Legislation Enhances Employee Stock Option Benefits' (2001) 12(9) Taxation of Executive Compensation and Retirement 423

1999

G Loutzenhiser, 'Holding Revenue Canada to its Word: Estoppel in Tax Law' (1999) vol. 57, no. 2, University of Toronto Faculty of Law Review 127

Books

2013

G Loutzenhiser and John Tiley, Advanced Topics in Revenue Law (Hart Publishing 2013)

2012

G Loutzenhiser and John Tiley, Revenue Law, 7th ed (Hart Publishing 2012)

2001

J Freedman, Employed or Self-Employed? Tax Classification and the Changing Labour Market. (The Institute for Fiscal Studies 2001)

Chapters

2013

G Loutzenhiser, 'Trompe-l’oeil: The sham doctrine in the Canadian tax courts' in Miranda Stewart and Edwin Simpson (eds), Sham Transactions (OUP 2013) (forthcoming)

2012

G Loutzenhiser, 'Taxation of Executive Compensation' in Jennifer Hill and Randall Thomas (eds), The Research Handbook on Executive Pay (Edward Elgar Publishing 2012)

J Vella, J Freedman and G Loomer, 'Analyzing the enhanced relationship between corporate taxpayers and revenue authorities: a UK case study' in L Oats (ed), A fieldwork guide to taxation (Routledge 2012)

2011

J Vella and J Freedman, 'HMRC’s Management of the U.K. Tax System: The Boundaries of Legitimate Discretion ' in J Freedman, C Evans and R Krever (eds), The Delicate Balance: Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law (IBFD 2011)

2010

J Freedman, G.Loomer and J.Vella, 'Analyzing the Enhanced Relationship Between Corporate Taxpayers and Revenue Authorities: A U.K. Case Study' in (The IRS Research Bulletin, Proceedings of the 2009 IRS Research Conference (The Department of the Treasury Internal Revenue Service, Washington DC, 2010 ) 2010)

J Freedman and C.Crawford, 'Small Business Taxation' in J Mirrlees, S Adam, T Besley, R Blundell, S Bond, R Chote, M Gammie, P Johnson, G Myles, J Poterba (eds), Dimensions of Tax Design: The Mirrlees Review ( Oxford University Press for Institute for Fiscal Studies 2010)

J Freedman, 'Tax Risk Management and Corporate Taxpayers - International Tax Administration Developments' in Bakker A and Kloosterhof S. (eds), Tax Risk Management - From Risk to Opportunity (IBFD 2010)

2009

J Freedman, 'Reforming the Business Tax System: Does Size Matter? Fundamental Issues in Small Business Taxation.' in Chris Evans and Richard Krever (eds), Australian Business Tax Reform in Retrospect and Prospect (The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia. Thomson Reuters (Professional) Australia Ltd 2009)

2008

J Freedman, 'Epilogue: Establishing the foundations of tax law in UK universities' in Avery Jones, J., Harris,P., Oliver, D. (eds), Comparative Perspectives on Revenue Law: Essays in Honour of John Tiley (CUP 2008)

J Freedman, 'Financial and Tax Accounting: Transparency and Truth' in Schon (ed), Tax and Corporate Governance (Springer Science 2008)

J Freedman, 'Is Tax Avoidance Fair?' in C.Wales (ed), Fair Tax: Towards a Modern Tax System (Smith Institute 2008)

J Freedman, G.Loomer and J.Vella, 'Moving Beyond Avoidance? Tax Risk and the Relationship between large Business and HMRC' in J.Freedman (ed), Beyond Boundaries: Developing Approaches to Tax Avoidance and Tax Risk Management (Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation 2008)

J Freedman and G.Macdonald, 'The Tax Base for CCCTB: The Role of Principles' in Lang/Pistone/Schuch/Staringer (ed), Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB) (Linde 2008)

J Vella, J Freedman and G Loomer, 'Moving Beyond Avoidance? Tax Risk and the Relationship between large Business and HMRC' in J. Freedman (ed), Beyond Boundaries: Developing Approaches to Tax Avoidance and Tax Risk Management (Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation 2008)

2007

J Freedman, 'The Tax Avoidance Culture: Who is Responsible? Governmental Influences and Corporate Social Responsibility' in Jane Holder and Colm O'Cinneide (eds), Current Legal Problems 2006 (OUP 2007) [...]

Based on lecture delivered by invitation as part of UCL's Current Legal Problems series.


ISBN: 978-0-19-921211-8

2006

E J F Simpson, 'Making Sense of the Ramsay Principle: a Novel Role for Public Law?' in Jean-Bernard Auby and M. R. Freedland (eds), The Public Law/Private Law Divide: une entente assez cordiale (Hart Publishing 2006)

2005

J Freedman, 'Taxation Research as Legal Research' in Lamb, M, Lymer, A, Freedman, J and James, S (eds), Taxation: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Research (OUP 2005) [...]

Chapter in book co-edited by author wth other members of the Tax Research Network.


J Freedman, 'Treatment of Capital Gains and Losses' in Peter Essers and Arie Rijkers (eds), The Notion of Income from Capital (IBFD 2005) [...]

Book chapter in European Association of Tax Law Professors tax Series Vol 1 published by International Bureau of Fiscal Documentation.


ISBN: 90-76078-81-5

2004

J Freedman, 'Limited Liability Partnerships in the United Kingdom: Do They Have a Role for Small Firms?' in J. McCahery, T. Raaijmakers, E.Vermeulen (eds), The Governance of Close Corporations and Partnerships (OUP 2004) [...]

Reprinted from The Journal of Corporate Law, with postscript.


ISBN: 0-19-926435-X

2003

J Freedman, 'Small Business Taxation: Policy Issues and the UK' in N. Warren (ed), Taxing Small Business: Developing Good Tax Policies (Australian Tax Research Foundation 2003) [...]

Paper from the ATAX SME Tax Symposium, Sydney 2003.


ISBN: 0 949482 79 X

E J F Simpson and B McFarlane, 'Tackling Avoidance' in J Getzler (ed), Rationalizing Property, Equity and Trusts - Essays in Honour of Edward Burn (OUP 2003)

2002

E J F Simpson, 'Part Three: Trusts and Taxation' in Megarry & Burn (eds), Trusts and Trustees: Cases and Materials, 6th edn, (Butterworths Lexis-Nexis 2002) [...]

The chapters describe how trusts are taxed.


ISBN: 0-406-98586-3

Edited books

2011

J Freedman and others (eds), The Delicate Balance - Tax, Discretion and the Rule of Law (International Bureau of Fiscal Documentation 2011)

2008

J Freedman (ed), Beyond Boundaries - Developing Approaches to Tax Avoidance and Tax Risk Management. (Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation 2008)

2005

J Freedman and others (eds), Taxation: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Research (ed. Lamb, Lymer, Freedman and James) (OUP 2005) [...]

Innovative approach to tax research- contributions from academics from many disciplines including JF


ISBN: 0-19-924293-3

Internet Publications
Case Notes

2014

J Freedman and Glen Loutzenhiser, 'Samadian v HMRC: deductibility of travel expenses when working from home' [2014] British Tax Review 248

2012

J Vella and J Freedman, 'Revenue Guidance: The Limits of Discretion and Legitimate Expectations' (2012) 128 Law Quarterly Review 192

2006

G Loutzenhiser, 'Jones v Garnett: Court of Appeal puts HMRC on ice' [2006] British Tax Review 140 [...]

Case note on Jones v Garnett Court of Appeal


2005

G Loutzenhiser, 'Jones v Garnett: High Court gives taxpayer the cold shoulder' [2005] British Tax Review 401 [...]

Extensive case note on Jones v Garnett with considerable policy discussion.


Presentation/Conference contributions

2003

G Loutzenhiser and others, 'Tax Policy and Global Warming', paper presented at (with David Duff) Fourth Global Environmental Tax Conference, Sydney, Australia, 2003

Reviews

2011

G Loutzenhiser, 'International Commercial Tax' [2011] British Tax Review 229

G Loutzenhiser, 'Tax arbitrage: the trawling of the international tax system' [2011] British Tax Review 358

G Loutzenhiser, 'Taxation of Intellectual Property' [2011] British Tax Review 357

Working Papers

2007

G Loutzenhiser and Stuart Adam, 'Integrating Income Tax and National Insurance: An Interim Report' (2007) Institute for Fiscal Studies Working Paper [...]

The report considers the merits of integrating income tax and national insurance contributions.


Reports

2014

J Freedman and John Vella, 'HMRC's Relationship with Business' (2014)

2011

G Loutzenhiser and others, 'Transparency in reporting financial data by multinational corporations' (Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation 2011)

Courses

The courses we offer in this field are:

Undergraduate

FHS - Final Year (Phase III)

The degree is awarded on the basis of nine final examinations at the end of the three-year course (or four years in the case of Law with Law Studies in Europe) and (for students who began the course in October 2011 or later) an essay in Jurisprudence written over the summer vacation at the end of the second year. Note: the Jurisprudence exam at the end of the third year is correspondingly shorter. This phase of the Final Honour School includes the first and second term of the final year; the Final Examinations are taken in the third term of the final year.

Taxation Law

Taxation pervades every area of life, including property, family, employment and business affairs. Tax law is well suited to interdisciplinary study, intersecting as it does with economics and politics. It also offers rich opportunities for the study of many areas of law, given that tax factors have frequently influenced development of legal concepts and principles. In turn, tax laws are shaped by concepts of property, commercial, corporate and employment law and approaches to drafting and interpretation of legislation. This course introduces students to selected issues in the law of taxation, chosen to illuminate fundamental concepts and to link to other parts of the undergraduate law course. The focus is on tax law, but the technical issues are examined by focusing on themes and principles and placing the law within its political and economic context, in order to create an understanding of the requirements of a tax system and the difficulties encountered in designing, legislating for and administering such a system.

Students taking this course are required to use a variety of sources, ranging from statute and case law to easily accessible literature from other disciplines, such as economics and accounting of which no prior knowledge is required. All the material is non-mathematical and no computation is required in any part of the course. The approach taken and topics chosen ensure that the course is of interest to a wide range of students.

Those entering the legal profession will find that knowledge of taxation is of value whether they intend to specialise in taxation, for which there are many opportunities, both in the City and in private client work, or as background to practice in other areas. The course will provide a valuable intellectual framework for the tax element in the professional legal training courses. Students interested in careers outside the legal profession will also find that the tax course provides a thorough grounding in a topic of central importance to business, politics and government.

The course examines the objectives and functions of a "good" tax system and how these affect what society chooses to tax. The focus of the course is on direct taxes - income tax, capital gains tax and inheritance tax in relation to individuals and businesses and the application of these taxes to private trusts The issue of tax avoidance is of central concern in most tax systems. The course examines the way in which our tax system has lent itself to ingenious tax avoidance (or tax planning?) schemes and the attempts of the judges and the legislature to combat these activities.

The course is taught by lectures and co-ordinated classes commencing in Michaelmas and continuing to 4th week in Hilary. These lectures and classes are key elements of the teaching. The five tutorials are also spread through Michaelmas and Hilary.

Postgraduate

BCL

Our taught postgraduate programme, designed to serve outstanding law students from common-law backgrounds

Corporate Tax Law and Policy

Are multi-national companies escaping taxation by tax planning and shifting profits? Where should they be paying tax and on what basis? Should we abolish corporation tax altogether and find some other way to tax business? Recent discussions in the media and by politicians and pressure groups have underlined that this is not just a technical area. It raises ethical, political, constitutional and economic questions at both the national and international level.

This course is unusual in the extent to which it integrates all these approaches with a rigorous examination of the legal issues, making it suitable for all with a wide interest in the area as well as those wishing to specialise in and become practitioners of taxation and/or corporate law.

Tax law is central to all businesses and of significance to many business transactions. It helps to shape business law and many commercial decisions. The Corporate Tax Law and Policy course is suitable not only for tax specialists but also for all students interested in business and commercial law at a practical or theoretical level. The course aims to introduce students to the issues surrounding taxation of domestic and multi-national corporations as well as that of unincorporated businesses. It uses UK tax law as a starting point for a broader study of tax principles, concepts and policy issues relevant to all tax systems at a national level. Using the same starting point, the course also examines some of the problems surrounding cross-border taxation (‘international taxation’) and the significant impact of EU law on business taxation. Detailed legal issues are studied in depth, always placed in their theoretical, economic and business context. Critical analysis of the policy underlying the law and the way it is implemented is encouraged, as is the introduction of comparative material from other jurisdictions. The course is therefore appropriate for students from a variety of backgrounds, whether or not they have studied tax before. It is regularly taken successfully by BCL and MJur students and MLFs also find that the course fits well with their other studies.

The course is taught by Judith Freedman, Pinsent Masons Professor of Taxation Law, and Dr. Glen Loutzenhiser, University Lecturer in Tax Law, with  lectures from leading researchers at the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation, and from other distinguished tax practitioners (including QCs and partners at leading law and accounting firms) and visiting academics. Dr Loutzenhisr  is the joint author of the  textbook used for the course. For further information please contact Professor Freedman at judith.freedman@law.ox.ac.uk

No prior study of tax law, company law or economics is required, although those with no knowledge of company law may need to do a small amount of background reading, on which advice will be given. Students who have studied tax as undergraduates in Oxford or elsewhere will usually find the course builds on their previous studies well. There will be NO CALCULATIONS. Students must be prepared to read many types of material and consider how policy issues and technical law interact. UK tax law, which forms a key component of the course, is statute based, so legislation must be studied, but case law is also important. Readings from public finance and accounting literature will be recommended on some topics: these will be accessible without specialist knowledge. Many of the readings will be available electronically and detailed reading lists, materials and guidance are posted onWeblearn. The syllabus is wide and the subject fast moving, so that the precise focus may vary from year to year.

Central themes are

  • The tax base- i.e. what should be taxed and when? If we are to tax profit, how should this be defined? What are the alternative bases for taxation?
  • The unit of taxation i.e. who should be taxed? The individual? The single company? The corporate group as a whole? A multi-national group as a whole? The ultimate shareholders? Consumers?
  • How are taxes at each level integrated with each other?
  • What are the special problems of small business taxation?
  • What distortions and problems are encountered in corporation tax, especially corporate financing, and how are these used in tax planning - e.g. the debt/equity differential; use of tax incentives; corporate residence; transfer pricing in multinational groups?
  • Who should do the taxing and set the rules? How should taxation be allocated between jurisdictions in the light of increasing mobility of capital and technological developments? What is the role of national governments, international bodies such as the European Union, the EU Court of Justice and the OECD? What is the role of double taxation treaties? Is there a future for a Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base in the EU?
  • What is tax avoidance in a business context and how, and to what extent, should it be restricted? To what extent and how can this be done by national tax authorities and what forms of international co-operation are possible for controlling transfer pricing, the use of low tax areas and similar activities?

The examination format allows students to focus on areas and approaches that interest them, although the entire course must be studied to gain a complete overview and understanding. The teaching consists of lectures and seminars spread over Michaelmas and Hilary terms with two or three lectures in Trinity Term. Some of the lectures provide background structure for the seminars and some are given by very distinguished guest lecturers drawn from practice and academia. There are four tutorials given by the course lecturers - one in MT and three in TT. Written work is set and marked for each tutorial.

For an excellent book on the need for radical reform of tax law, see the Mirrlees Review

You could also visit the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation site for more materials and information about past and future events. The Centre hosts many guest lectures from leading  tax experts and  students are normally welcome to attend.

For full reading guides see Weblearn resources. Full reading guides are provided for each topic.

Personal Taxation

Taxation comprises a difficult and complex mass of material. It is hard to deny that proposition, but the Oxford Personal Tax course is designed to be questioning and challenging. For a start, only a limited range of taxes is within the syllabus: income tax on trusts and annual payments, capital gains tax and inheritance tax. Legislative and judicial methods of countering tax avoidance are dealt with in depth. We attempt to teach the material in such a way that the detail is much less important than the cases and the ideas underpinning the law. Company taxation is not covered in the Personal Tax course, but is dealt with in the Corporate and Business Taxation course. The two tax courses on the BCL are complementary but are also completely freestanding so may be taken alone or together depending on the student's interest. It is not essential to have studied tax previously in order to take either the Personal Taxation course or Corporate and Business Taxation but students who have studied the subject at undergraduate level will find that the material in the graduate courses will flow on well from their initial courses and will enhance their existing knowledge of taxation. A theme that runs through a significant proportion of the course is the way in which trusts are affected by taxation, particularly in comparison with taxation of individuals. This involves considerable use of trusts cases and theories - not surprising when one remembers the number of trusts cases that have arisen in a taxation context. Accordingly, it is not advisable to study Personal Taxation unless you have covered Trusts already or are taking it as an option in the MJur. Personal Taxation offers the opportunity to consider an almost entirely statutory area and study the reaction of the judiciary to it. This is particularly revealing in the fast developing area of judicial reaction to tax avoidance schemes. This is an area of intense judicial activity and disagreement, at its heart being the question as to how far the courts should go to defeat schemes that set out to frustrate the intended effect of taxes or exemptions from taxation. This is an area that benefits from comparisons with other countries, although most of Personal Taxation has its focus on purely English taxation provisions.

Lectures in Michaelmas and Hilary Terms set out to cover virtually the entirety of the syllabus. Tutorials are normally arranged after lectures are completed. There is a "Tax Problem Class" in Trinity Term which combines the objectives of developing the necessary skills to handle problem questions on taxation and of enabling seminar discussion of some of the more perplexing issues in the subject. Anyone who wishes to have further information before deciding whether to take Personal Taxation is welcome to contact Mr R J Smith (Magdalen College).

This course covers selected topics within (a) Income Tax; (b) Capital Gains Tax; (c) Inheritance Tax and other methods of taxing capital; (d) general responses to tax avoidance. The taxes are to be studied with particular reference to the taxation of gifts and settlements. Candidates will not be examined on the details of the Finance Bill or Act of the year of examination. Candidates are advised not to offer this paper unless they have studied the law of Trusts in their first law degree course. Income Tax comprises: (i) Principles of the general charge to tax on individuals and families: personal reliefs and allowances in general; (ii) taxation of settlors, trustees and beneficiaries; foreign element relating thereto. Capital Gains Tax comprises: (i) General charge to tax on individuals; (ii) disposals and acquisitions of assets in general; (iii) gifts and settlements; (iv) disposal on death and administration of estates; (v) computation of gains and losses in general (but not the rules relating to leasehold interests, or wasting assets); (vi) exemptions; (vii) foreign element. Inheritance Tax comprises: (i)historical background; (ii) general charge to tax on individuals; iii) settled property; (iv) administration of estates; (v) reliefs and exemptions; (vi) valuation; (vii) foreign element.

MJur

Our taught postgraduate programme, designed to serve outstanding law students from civil law backgrounds.

Corporate Tax Law and Policy

Are multi-national companies escaping taxation by tax planning and shifting profits? Where should they be paying tax and on what basis? Should we abolish corporation tax altogether and find some other way to tax business? Recent discussions in the media and by politicians and pressure groups have underlined that this is not just a technical area. It raises ethical, political, constitutional and economic questions at both the national and international level.

This course is unusual in the extent to which it integrates all these approaches with a rigorous examination of the legal issues, making it suitable for all with a wide interest in the area as well as those wishing to specialise in and become practitioners of taxation and/or corporate law.

Tax law is central to all businesses and of significance to many business transactions. It helps to shape business law and many commercial decisions. The Corporate Tax Law and Policy course is suitable not only for tax specialists but also for all students interested in business and commercial law at a practical or theoretical level. The course aims to introduce students to the issues surrounding taxation of domestic and multi-national corporations as well as that of unincorporated businesses. It uses UK tax law as a starting point for a broader study of tax principles, concepts and policy issues relevant to all tax systems at a national level. Using the same starting point, the course also examines some of the problems surrounding cross-border taxation (‘international taxation’) and the significant impact of EU law on business taxation. Detailed legal issues are studied in depth, always placed in their theoretical, economic and business context. Critical analysis of the policy underlying the law and the way it is implemented is encouraged, as is the introduction of comparative material from other jurisdictions. The course is therefore appropriate for students from a variety of backgrounds, whether or not they have studied tax before. It is regularly taken successfully by BCL and MJur students and MLFs also find that the course fits well with their other studies.

The course is taught by Judith Freedman, Pinsent Masons Professor of Taxation Law, and Dr. Glen Loutzenhiser, University Lecturer in Tax Law, with  lectures from leading researchers at the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation, and from other distinguished tax practitioners (including QCs and partners at leading law and accounting firms) and visiting academics. Dr Loutzenhisr  is the joint author of the  textbook used for the course. For further information please contact Professor Freedman at judith.freedman@law.ox.ac.uk

No prior study of tax law, company law or economics is required, although those with no knowledge of company law may need to do a small amount of background reading, on which advice will be given. Students who have studied tax as undergraduates in Oxford or elsewhere will usually find the course builds on their previous studies well. There will be NO CALCULATIONS. Students must be prepared to read many types of material and consider how policy issues and technical law interact. UK tax law, which forms a key component of the course, is statute based, so legislation must be studied, but case law is also important. Readings from public finance and accounting literature will be recommended on some topics: these will be accessible without specialist knowledge. Many of the readings will be available electronically and detailed reading lists, materials and guidance are posted onWeblearn. The syllabus is wide and the subject fast moving, so that the precise focus may vary from year to year.

Central themes are

  • The tax base- i.e. what should be taxed and when? If we are to tax profit, how should this be defined? What are the alternative bases for taxation?
  • The unit of taxation i.e. who should be taxed? The individual? The single company? The corporate group as a whole? A multi-national group as a whole? The ultimate shareholders? Consumers?
  • How are taxes at each level integrated with each other?
  • What are the special problems of small business taxation?
  • What distortions and problems are encountered in corporation tax, especially corporate financing, and how are these used in tax planning - e.g. the debt/equity differential; use of tax incentives; corporate residence; transfer pricing in multinational groups?
  • Who should do the taxing and set the rules? How should taxation be allocated between jurisdictions in the light of increasing mobility of capital and technological developments? What is the role of national governments, international bodies such as the European Union, the EU Court of Justice and the OECD? What is the role of double taxation treaties? Is there a future for a Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base in the EU?
  • What is tax avoidance in a business context and how, and to what extent, should it be restricted? To what extent and how can this be done by national tax authorities and what forms of international co-operation are possible for controlling transfer pricing, the use of low tax areas and similar activities?

The examination format allows students to focus on areas and approaches that interest them, although the entire course must be studied to gain a complete overview and understanding. The teaching consists of lectures and seminars spread over Michaelmas and Hilary terms with two or three lectures in Trinity Term. Some of the lectures provide background structure for the seminars and some are given by very distinguished guest lecturers drawn from practice and academia. There are four tutorials given by the course lecturers - one in MT and three in TT. Written work is set and marked for each tutorial.

For an excellent book on the need for radical reform of tax law, see the Mirrlees Review

You could also visit the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation site for more materials and information about past and future events. The Centre hosts many guest lectures from leading  tax experts and  students are normally welcome to attend.

For full reading guides see Weblearn resources. Full reading guides are provided for each topic.

Personal Taxation

Taxation comprises a difficult and complex mass of material. It is hard to deny that proposition, but the Oxford Personal Tax course is designed to be questioning and challenging. For a start, only a limited range of taxes is within the syllabus: income tax on trusts and annual payments, capital gains tax and inheritance tax. Legislative and judicial methods of countering tax avoidance are dealt with in depth. We attempt to teach the material in such a way that the detail is much less important than the cases and the ideas underpinning the law. Company taxation is not covered in the Personal Tax course, but is dealt with in the Corporate and Business Taxation course. The two tax courses on the BCL are complementary but are also completely freestanding so may be taken alone or together depending on the student's interest. It is not essential to have studied tax previously in order to take either the Personal Taxation course or Corporate and Business Taxation but students who have studied the subject at undergraduate level will find that the material in the graduate courses will flow on well from their initial courses and will enhance their existing knowledge of taxation. A theme that runs through a significant proportion of the course is the way in which trusts are affected by taxation, particularly in comparison with taxation of individuals. This involves considerable use of trusts cases and theories - not surprising when one remembers the number of trusts cases that have arisen in a taxation context. Accordingly, it is not advisable to study Personal Taxation unless you have covered Trusts already or are taking it as an option in the MJur. Personal Taxation offers the opportunity to consider an almost entirely statutory area and study the reaction of the judiciary to it. This is particularly revealing in the fast developing area of judicial reaction to tax avoidance schemes. This is an area of intense judicial activity and disagreement, at its heart being the question as to how far the courts should go to defeat schemes that set out to frustrate the intended effect of taxes or exemptions from taxation. This is an area that benefits from comparisons with other countries, although most of Personal Taxation has its focus on purely English taxation provisions.

Lectures in Michaelmas and Hilary Terms set out to cover virtually the entirety of the syllabus. Tutorials are normally arranged after lectures are completed. There is a "Tax Problem Class" in Trinity Term which combines the objectives of developing the necessary skills to handle problem questions on taxation and of enabling seminar discussion of some of the more perplexing issues in the subject. Anyone who wishes to have further information before deciding whether to take Personal Taxation is welcome to contact Mr R J Smith (Magdalen College).

This course covers selected topics within (a) Income Tax; (b) Capital Gains Tax; (c) Inheritance Tax and other methods of taxing capital; (d) general responses to tax avoidance. The taxes are to be studied with particular reference to the taxation of gifts and settlements. Candidates will not be examined on the details of the Finance Bill or Act of the year of examination. Candidates are advised not to offer this paper unless they have studied the law of Trusts in their first law degree course. Income Tax comprises: (i) Principles of the general charge to tax on individuals and families: personal reliefs and allowances in general; (ii) taxation of settlors, trustees and beneficiaries; foreign element relating thereto. Capital Gains Tax comprises: (i) General charge to tax on individuals; (ii) disposals and acquisitions of assets in general; (iii) gifts and settlements; (iv) disposal on death and administration of estates; (v) computation of gains and losses in general (but not the rules relating to leasehold interests, or wasting assets); (vi) exemptions; (vii) foreign element. Inheritance Tax comprises: (i)historical background; (ii) general charge to tax on individuals; iii) settled property; (iv) administration of estates; (v) reliefs and exemptions; (vi) valuation; (vii) foreign element.

MSc (Master's in Law and Finance)

Corporate Tax Law and Policy

Are multi-national companies escaping taxation by tax planning and shifting profits? Where should they be paying tax and on what basis? Should we abolish corporation tax altogether and find some other way to tax business? Recent discussions in the media and by politicians and pressure groups have underlined that this is not just a technical area. It raises ethical, political, constitutional and economic questions at both the national and international level.

This course is unusual in the extent to which it integrates all these approaches with a rigorous examination of the legal issues, making it suitable for all with a wide interest in the area as well as those wishing to specialise in and become practitioners of taxation and/or corporate law.

Tax law is central to all businesses and of significance to many business transactions. It helps to shape business law and many commercial decisions. The Corporate Tax Law and Policy course is suitable not only for tax specialists but also for all students interested in business and commercial law at a practical or theoretical level. The course aims to introduce students to the issues surrounding taxation of domestic and multi-national corporations as well as that of unincorporated businesses. It uses UK tax law as a starting point for a broader study of tax principles, concepts and policy issues relevant to all tax systems at a national level. Using the same starting point, the course also examines some of the problems surrounding cross-border taxation (‘international taxation’) and the significant impact of EU law on business taxation. Detailed legal issues are studied in depth, always placed in their theoretical, economic and business context. Critical analysis of the policy underlying the law and the way it is implemented is encouraged, as is the introduction of comparative material from other jurisdictions. The course is therefore appropriate for students from a variety of backgrounds, whether or not they have studied tax before. It is regularly taken successfully by BCL and MJur students and MLFs also find that the course fits well with their other studies.

The course is taught by Judith Freedman, Pinsent Masons Professor of Taxation Law, and Dr. Glen Loutzenhiser, University Lecturer in Tax Law, with  lectures from leading researchers at the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation, and from other distinguished tax practitioners (including QCs and partners at leading law and accounting firms) and visiting academics. Dr Loutzenhisr  is the joint author of the  textbook used for the course. For further information please contact Professor Freedman at judith.freedman@law.ox.ac.uk

No prior study of tax law, company law or economics is required, although those with no knowledge of company law may need to do a small amount of background reading, on which advice will be given. Students who have studied tax as undergraduates in Oxford or elsewhere will usually find the course builds on their previous studies well. There will be NO CALCULATIONS. Students must be prepared to read many types of material and consider how policy issues and technical law interact. UK tax law, which forms a key component of the course, is statute based, so legislation must be studied, but case law is also important. Readings from public finance and accounting literature will be recommended on some topics: these will be accessible without specialist knowledge. Many of the readings will be available electronically and detailed reading lists, materials and guidance are posted onWeblearn. The syllabus is wide and the subject fast moving, so that the precise focus may vary from year to year.

Central themes are

  • The tax base- i.e. what should be taxed and when? If we are to tax profit, how should this be defined? What are the alternative bases for taxation?
  • The unit of taxation i.e. who should be taxed? The individual? The single company? The corporate group as a whole? A multi-national group as a whole? The ultimate shareholders? Consumers?
  • How are taxes at each level integrated with each other?
  • What are the special problems of small business taxation?
  • What distortions and problems are encountered in corporation tax, especially corporate financing, and how are these used in tax planning - e.g. the debt/equity differential; use of tax incentives; corporate residence; transfer pricing in multinational groups?
  • Who should do the taxing and set the rules? How should taxation be allocated between jurisdictions in the light of increasing mobility of capital and technological developments? What is the role of national governments, international bodies such as the European Union, the EU Court of Justice and the OECD? What is the role of double taxation treaties? Is there a future for a Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base in the EU?
  • What is tax avoidance in a business context and how, and to what extent, should it be restricted? To what extent and how can this be done by national tax authorities and what forms of international co-operation are possible for controlling transfer pricing, the use of low tax areas and similar activities?

The examination format allows students to focus on areas and approaches that interest them, although the entire course must be studied to gain a complete overview and understanding. The teaching consists of lectures and seminars spread over Michaelmas and Hilary terms with two or three lectures in Trinity Term. Some of the lectures provide background structure for the seminars and some are given by very distinguished guest lecturers drawn from practice and academia. There are four tutorials given by the course lecturers - one in MT and three in TT. Written work is set and marked for each tutorial.

For an excellent book on the need for radical reform of tax law, see the Mirrlees Review

You could also visit the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation site for more materials and information about past and future events. The Centre hosts many guest lectures from leading  tax experts and  students are normally welcome to attend.

For full reading guides see Weblearn resources. Full reading guides are provided for each topic.


People

Taxation teaching is organized by a Subject Group convened by:

Judith Freedman: Pinsent Masons Professor of Taxation Law

in conjunction with:

Glen Loutzenhiser: Associate Professor of Tax Law
Edwin Simpson: Associate Professor of Law
Roger Smith: Associate Professor of Law
John Vella: Senior Research Fellow at the Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation
Anzhela Yevgenyeva: Research Fellow

Also working in this field, but not involved in its teaching programme:

Stephen Daly: DPhil Law student
Dimitrios Kyriazis: DPhil Law student
Doreen McBarnet: Professor of Socio-Legal Studies


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