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Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Delicate Balance – Tax, Discretion and the Rule of Law

DelicateThe Delicate Balance – Tax, Discretion and the Rule of Law (Chris Evans (University of New South Wales), Judith Freedman (Oxford University) & Richard Krever (Monash University), eds.) (IBFD 2011):

Few aspects of revenue law generate stronger feelings than the exercise of discretionary power by tax administrations. A delicate balance often needs to be struck between the legitimate needs of revenue authorities and the equally legitimate interests and rights of taxpayers. On the one hand, the executive and administration need to have sufficient capacity to apply the law; on the other, there is a need to maintain the principle of the rule of law that it is the elected legislature, and not the executive or tax administration, that establishes tax burdens. The chapters in this volume explore that delicate balance.

The Delicate Balance - Tax, Discretion and the Rule of Law considers the critical questions that arise from the intersections of tax, discretion and the rule of law in modern common and civil law jurisdictions: What do we mean by tax discretion and how does it vary in conceptual and practical terms in different tax regimes? What role should discretion play in tax systems that operate under the rule of law and how large should that role be? What are the legal, political, institutional and other constraints that can prevent abuse of discretion? To what extent can, and should, the legislature safely delegate discretionary powers to tax administrations?

Table of Contents:

  1. Tax, Discretion and the Rule of Law, by Dominic De Cogan
  2. The Delicate Balance: Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law – Some Thoughts in a Legal Theory and Comparative Perspective, by Ana Paula Dourado
  3. The Promise and the Reality of U.S. Tax Administration, by Kristin E. Hickman
  4. A Reasonable Balance: Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law in Canada, by Kim Brooks
  5. HMRC’s Management of the U.K. Tax System: The Boundaries of Legitimate Discretion, by Judith Freedman & John Vella
  6. The Delicate Balance: Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law in Australia, by Michael Walpole & Chris Evans
  7. Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law in New Zealand, by Shelley Griffiths
  8. Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law: South Africa, by Ernest Mazansky
  9. Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law in Hong Kong, by Andrew Halkyard
  10. Balancing of Powers in Dutch Tax Law: General Overview and Recent Developments, by Richard Happé & Melvin Pauwels
  11. The Delicate Balance Between Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law in France, by Christophe Grandcolas
  12. Revenue Authority Discretions and the Rule of Law: The Quest for a Recta Ratio, by Marco Greggi
  13. Tax Discretion in Hungary, by Borbála Kolozs & Richard Krever
  14. The Rule of Law in Chinese Tax Administration, by Wei Cui

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