TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron
Pepperdine University School of Law

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Making Better Use Of The First And Last Five Minutes Of Class

SmallJames Lang (Professor of English and Director of Center for Teaching Excellence, Assumption College; ), Small Changes in Teaching (March 2016):

The First Five Minutes of Class:

The opening five minutes offer us a rich opportunity to capture the attention of students and prepare them for learning. They walk into our classes trailing all of the distractions of their complex lives — the many wonders of their smartphones, the arguments with roommates, the question of what to have for lunch. Their bodies may be stuck in a room with us for the required time period, but their minds may be somewhere else entirely.

It seems clear, then, that we should start class with a deliberate effort to bring students’ focus to the subject at hand. Unfortunately, based on my many observations of faculty members in action, the first five minutes of a college class often get frittered away with logistical task. ...

I offer four quick suggestions for the first few minutes of class to focus the attention of students and prepare their brains for learning.

  1. Open with a question or two. ...
  2. What did we learn last time? ...
  3. Reactivate what they learned in previous courses. ...
  4. Write it down. ... Let a writing exercise help you bring focus and engagement to the opening of every class session. Build it into your routine. Class has begun: time to write, time to think.

In writing, as in learning, openings matter. Don’t fritter them away.

The Last Five Minutes of Class:

In my experience — having observed many dozens of college courses over the past two decades — most faculty members eye the final minutes of class as an opportunity to cram in eight more points before students exit, or to say three more things that just occurred to us about the day’s material, or to call out as many reminders as possible about upcoming deadlines, next week’s exam, or tomorrow’s homework.

At the same time, we complain when students start to pack their bags before class ends. But why should we be surprised by that reaction when our class slides messily to a conclusion? We’re still trying to teach while students’ minds — and sometimes their bodies — are headed out the door. We make little or no effort to put a clear stamp on the final minutes of class, which leads to students eyeing the clock and leaving according to the dictates of the minute hand rather than the logic of the class period. ... [L]et us turn to better ways we can make better use of the final five minutes in class.

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April 12, 2016 in Book Club, Legal Education, Teaching | Permalink | Comments (0)

The IRS Scandal, Day 1069

IRS Logo 2Politico, The Ghost of Lois Lerner:

Probably the biggest news to come out Sunday was President Barack Obama’s defense of Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified information while secretary of State on “Fox News Sunday” — and his assertion that Clinton won’t get any special treatment from a Justice Department investigation. Well, you probably have a decent idea of how conservative commentators Karl Rove and George Will responded to that notion.

“In the midst of what was supposed to be a Justice Department investigation of Lois Lerner and the IRS, and the president said prejudging the whole process, there is not a smidgeon of evidence of a scandal at the IRS,” Will said. “Now, we know that the Justice Department investigation was a sham. It was part of the cover-up. They gave the investigation to an Obama contributor working in the Justice Department.” (Both Democrats and the Justice Department found that the IRS handled tea party applications incompetently, but without “criminal intent,” as Justice put it.)

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April 12, 2016 in IRS News, IRS Scandal, Tax | Permalink | Comments (2)

Monday, April 11, 2016

Oh Presents How The Rich Drive Progressive Marginal Tax Rates Today At Pepperdine

OhJason S. Oh (UCLA) presents How the Rich Drive Progressive Marginal Tax Rates at Pepperdine today as part of our Tax Policy Workshop Series funded in part by a generous gift from Scott Racine:

Why do income tax systems consistently feature progressive marginal rates? The existing literature tells a political story focusing on the preferences of the poor and middle class – high rates at the top of the rate schedule can fund greater redistribution. This Article argues that progressive marginal rates can alternatively be explained by focusing on the preferences of the middle class and the rich regarding the bottom of the rate schedule. Specifically, these groups benefit from inframarginal rate cuts at low levels of income. This alternative explanation of marginal rate progressivity is attractive because it focuses on the rich, a group which intuition and research suggest wields disproportionate political power.

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April 11, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Fleischer Presents Alpha: Labor Is The New Capital Today At UC-Irvine

Fleischer (2016)Victor Fleischer (San Diego) presents Alpha: Labor is the New Capital at UC-Irvine today as part of its Tax Law and Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Omri Marian:

What taxpayers report as capital gains income is often a form of labor income in disguise. This is especially true at the very top of the income distribution, where a large and rising share of national income is derived from partnership allocations of carried interest, the sale of founders’ stock, and the sale of investment services partnership interests. Rich people sometimes say they are lightly taxed because they have investment income. This is not always true. Often, they are lightly taxed because corporate executives, founders of technology companies, and investment fund managers earn income that measures the value of their labor by reference to the value of a capital asset, thus transforming labor income into capital gains. This kind of income—what I call alpha income—accounts for the lion’s share of the recent rise of income inequality in the United States.

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April 11, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

2015-16 College Faculty Salaries

Top Private University Faculty Salaries for Full Professors, 2015-16 (Average)

1. Columbia University $236,300
2. University of Chicago $232,400
3. Stanford University $229,600
4. Harvard University $220,200
5. Princeton University $215,900
6. New York University $205,600
7. Yale University $203,500
8. Massachusetts Institute of Technology $202,600
9. University of Pennsylvania $202,000
10. Johns Hopkins University $200,900

Top Public University Faculty Salaries for Full Professors, 2015-16 (Average)

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April 11, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (7)

NYU Hosts 7th Annual Tax Movie Night

Hemel:  The Vanguard Case Reconsidered

VanguardDaniel Hemel (Chicago), The Vanguard Case Reconsidered, 150 Tax Notes 1466 (Mar. 21, 2016):

Recent news reports have suggested that the Vanguard Group family of mutual funds may need to quadruple investors’ fees to cover corporate income tax liabilities. Professor Reuven Avi-Yonah has estimated that Vanguard’s federal tax liability for the 2007-2014 period is roughly $34.6 billion. For the more than 20 million investors in Vanguard funds, the potential financial implications of the tax dispute are significant: Vanguard would presumably pass its tax costs along to customers, leading to higher expense ratios and lower returns. For observers of the IRS, the issue is an important one as well: A $34.6 billion recovery from Vanguard would be multiples more than what the IRS has ever recouped from a taxpayer in a transfer pricing case.

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April 11, 2016 in Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Caron & Soled:  New Prominence Of Tax Basis In Estate Planning

Paul L. Caron (Pepperdine) & Jay A. Soled (Rutgers), New Prominence of Tax Basis in Estate Planning, 150 Tax Notes 1569 (Mar. 28, 2016):

In this article, Caron and Soled discuss how section 1014(b)(6) offers a bridge for taxpayers to maximize the tax basis they have in their assets. Whether Congress should retain this anachronistic provision is an open issue. The authors explain the historical background of section 1014(b)(6), demonstrate the potential income tax savings from applying it, and outline several planning strategies to achieve those savings.

April 11, 2016 in Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Should Law Schools Give Summer Grants To Faculty For Teaching Projects As Well As For Research?

Summer GrantsMost law schools offer summer research grants.  The latest Society of American Law Teachers survey reports summer research grant awards at 82 law schools (41% of all law schools), ranging from $3,000 at Gonzaga (ranked #132 in U.S. News) to $27,500 at Georgia (#33).  Only one of the Top 25 law schools (Iowa) responded to the SALT survey, and anecdotal evidence suggests that summer research grants are much higher at those schools, often 2/9 of salary. The Best Practices for Legal Education blog "suggests that in addition to research grants, schools consider summer teaching innovation grants":

At Georgia State, like at many schools, our dean has encouraged us to integrate experiential learning throughout the curriculum.  And, he has put his money where his mouth is.

Faculty can compete for  summer teaching innovation grants which are funded at the same level as research grants. Both junior and senior faculty members have taken advantage of the summer grant  opportunities to either revamp existing courses or create new ones.

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April 11, 2016 in Legal Education, Scholarship, Teaching | Permalink | Comments (2)

Washington Post:  Law Professors Say Posting ‘All Lives Matter’ Flier Was ‘Incident Of Intolerance'

AUALMFollowing up on my previous posts:

Washington Post, Law School Professors Say Posting ‘All Lives Matter’ Flier Was an ‘Incident of Intolerance’:

Earlier this month, someone left a hand-written flier on the door of a faculty member’s office at American University’s Washington College of Law that read, “All Lives Matter.” It didn’t go unnoticed.

That phrase — to some, code language for a racist rejection of an important cultural wake-up call, for others, an idealistic appeal for a simple, more universal truth — set off a series of reactions.

A large group of faculty were offended, saying the phrase was used by white supremacists. Students held a community forum.

And a couple of professors on a national civil-rights commission asked the dean, incredulously, “What is wrong with your faculty and staff members?”

The variety of responses, and their intensity, illustrated how fraught the topic of race is on campuses across the country, how divisive, and how alert people are to differences. ...

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April 11, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (16)

The IRS Scandal, Day 1068

IRS Logo 2Patriot Post, IRS Meets Some Justice:

The Internal Revenue Service long has been exposed in its overtly political and sleazy maneuvering, but little has been done thus far to hold rogue bureaucrats to account. Fortunately, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals took a step toward halting the deny-delay-and-destroy tactics of this government agency. ...

For just shy of three years, Barack Obama’s weaponized tax-collecting agency has fought to hide data being sought by conservative groups the IRS targeted in the 2012 election cycle. Specifically, the IRS petitioned for a writ of mandamus to block the discovery efforts of the plaintiffs.

But the Sixth Circuit has ordered that the taxpayer-funded agency immediately turn over requested information about its activity. Writing for the unanimous three-judge appellate panel, Judge Raymond Kethledge noted that mandamus is “an extraordinary remedy reserved to correct only the clearest abuses of power by a district court.” In other words, the offense was greeted with a flat denial of the IRS’s petition.

The Court’s response begins: “Among the most serious allegations a federal court can address are that an executive agency has targeted citizens for mistreatment based on their political views. No citizen — Republican or Democrat, socialist or libertarian — should be targeted or even have to fear being targeted on those grounds. Yet those are the grounds on which the plaintiffs allege they were mistreated by the IRS here. The allegations are substantial: most are drawn from findings made by the Treasury Department’s own Inspector General for Tax Administration.”

The Cincinnati-based three-judge appeals panel charged with this matter has lost patience with the legal representation of the IRS. And who represents the IRS in this lawsuit that’s clearly being avoided only through the lack of cooperation? None other than the Obama Justice Department.

Judge Kethledge authored the decision and wrote that the Justice Dept. lawyers “have a long and storied tradition of defending the nation’s interests and enforcing its laws — all of them, not just selective ones — in a manner worthy of the Department’s name. The conduct of the IRS’s attorneys in the district court falls outside that tradition. We expect that the IRS will do better going forward.”

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April 11, 2016 in IRS News, IRS Scandal, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Sunday, April 10, 2016

2016 Religious Law School Rankings

Firm in the Faith (pre-Law Magazine, Spring 2016):

As gay marriage and other cultural changes sweep the nation, the most devout law schools seek to hold onto their core beliefs.

Religious Law Schools

2014 Religious Law School Rankings:

We compiled a ranking based on the following: percentage and activity of students who belong to the faith; percentage and activity of faculty who belong to the faith; number of religion-focused courses and other ways the school incorporates the faith into the curricula; religion-based journals, centers and clinics; religious services and clergy at the law school; mission of the law school.

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April 10, 2016 in Law School Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (3)

Bernie Sanders’s False Claim That He Has Released His Full Federal Tax Returns

FalseWashington Post Fact Checker, Bernie Sanders’s False Claim That He Has Released His Full Federal Tax Returns:

Jake Tapper: “Let’s talk about taxes, specifically about your tax returns. I have to say, I’m kind of surprised that you haven’t gone further on transparency. You released the summary page of your 2014 tax returns. Hillary Clinton has posted on her website the last eight years of her personal returns, all of the returns. Before the New York primary, will you match her? Will you post your full returns for the last eight years?”

Bernie Sanders: “You know who does our tax returns? My wife does our tax returns. We’ve been a little bit busy lately. So we will get out as much information as we can. There ain’t going to be very much exciting in that. I get a salary from the United States Senate, you know, there’s not going to be anything new in it that people haven’t seen for the last many years, but we will get it out as soon as we can.”

Tapper: “But nobody has seen them at all, I guess, is the point, and whether or not there’s anything exciting in them –“

Sanders: “No, that is not true. That is not true. Of course, we have released them in the past. Our financial situation, to the best of my knowledge, has not changed very much, but we will get out all of that information as soon as we can.”

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April 10, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (2)

The Top 5 Tax Paper Downloads

SSRN LogoThere is a bit of movement in this week's list of the Top 5 Recent Tax Paper Downloads, with a new paper debuting on the list at #5:

  1. [623 Downloads]  Lexisnexis® Guide to FATCA Compliance: Chapter 1, by Willliam Byrnes (Texas A&M) & Robert J. Munro (Texas A&M)
  2. [300 Downloads]  The Tax Lives of Uber Drivers: Evidence from Internet Discussion Forums, by Shu-Yi Oei (Tulane) & Diane M. Ring (Boston College)
  3. [264 Downloads]  Ownership of the Means of Production, by E. Glen Weyl (Chicago) & Anthony Lee Zhang (Stanford)
  4. [243 Downloads]  Taxing Wealth Seriously, by Edward J. McCaffery (USC)
  5. [233 Downloads]  The Law of the Platform, by Orly Lobel (San Diego)

April 10, 2016 in Scholarship, Tax, Top 5 Downloads | Permalink | Comments (0)

Atheists Try Again To Strike § 107 Housing Allowance for 'Ministers of the Gospel'

Law 360, Atheists Try Again To Strike Clergy Housing Tax Exemption:

An atheist group on Wednesday filed a suit in a Wisconsin federal court alleging that a tax exemption for housing allowances paid to ministers violates the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution after an earlier challenge was dismissed for lack of standing.

A lawsuit filed by the Freedom From Religion Foundation in 2011 was dismissed by the Seventh Circuit in 2014 because the staff members never requested tax refunds. In the new complaint filed Wednesday, the foundation claims that following the appellate court's dismissal, its staff members sought a refund of income taxes paid on housing allowances received from the group but were denied by the Internal Revenue Service. 

The suit seeks an end to Tax Code Section 107, which provides that a housing allowance paid to a “minister of the gospel” is not included in taxable income. The provision is discriminatory because it is provided exclusively to religious clergy, the group says.

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April 10, 2016 in New Cases, Tax | Permalink | Comments (3)

The IRS Scandal, Day 1067

Hackney Philip Hackney (LSU), Incorrect Claims About IRS Given Bullhorn on TaxProf:

Just a heads up that a story you posted on April 9, 2016 on the "IRS Scandal, Day 1066" entitled Renew America, Most Dangerous Year for Free Speech in U.S. History, by Bryan Fischer, contains incorrect information that appears to me to be a deliberate falsehood. It claims that the IRS denied the applications for tax-exempt status of 67 organizations last year. That is true. But it also claims that of those 67 denials, 57 were denials of "religious groups." I see a lot of bad information in the stories you post regarding the "IRS scandal," but this one jumped out at me as clearly wrong and likely to cause harm. 

Fischer based his claims on the Free Beacon story entitled IRS Denied Tax-Exempt Status to 57 Religious Groups in 2015. The IRS report from which the reporter derived her information is here. In Table 24 of that document the IRS states that it denied 57 501(c)(3) "religious, charitable and similar organizations" during the particular taxable period. In other words the denials the reporter claims were for strictly "religious groups" were denials for 501(c)(3) organizations generally. She just conveniently left off the other qualifiers from that report and that failure still shows up on TaxProf blog, in Fischer’s story, and in the headline to the reporter’s story.  

While from the information the reporter used, it might have been theoretically possible that all 57 were in fact "religious groups," a little bit of work would have shown that claim to be false. I located 42 of the 57 denials issued during the taxable period (technically 10/1/14 - 9/30/15) and listed them below. Only two of 42 denials I located were denials as to "religious groups." The reporter failed to do any work to track that down. Fischer repeated that falsehood and TaxProf Blog magnified that falsehood.

The author plays fast and loose with the facts in order to presumably inflame tensions on this issue. There are other issues with the article, but that one is the most egregious. Many of the stories you post from right wing or religious press contain such significant problems. Such lies have real world consequences on real people who work for the IRS. Such lies have deep implications for the administration of the tax system. I wish you would reconsider the publication of reporting that contains such deliberate falsehoods. Please consider posting corrections as other media outlets do when the facts are found to be incorrect. This one deserves a correction.

Thanks for hearing me out.

UPDATE: In what appears to be a modest modification of the story after I first sent you this letter, the reporter in the Free Beacon now claims: “The IRS rejected a total of 67 applications for tax-exempt status in 2015, and religious groups comprised the majority of denials.” This claim is still wrong for same reasons discussed above.

Denials in the relevant period that were on mundane EO matters such as helping kids, working with open source software, fundraising and stock racing cars: Denial 201452017, 201502017, 201503016, 201504017, 201505039, 201505042, 201507023, 201507026, 201505040, 201505041, 201507025, 201509039, 201510059, 201511024, 201514011, 201514013, 201516066, 201515037, 201517019, 201517008, 201519035, 201523021, 201525011, 201525012, 201525014, 201527043, 201529012, 201529013, 201533014, 201534020, 201535019, 201540016, 201540019, 201545030, 201545031, 201545028, 201545029, 201548021, 201548025, 20155004

RELIGIOUS GROUP Denial 201523022, 201526020 

Editor's note:  As I have repeatedly said:

“My goal [in covering the IRS Scandal is] to link to every single press report about the scandal – from both the right and the left. Because the right covers the scandal much more than the left, I have linked to many more stories from the right than from the left. Check out Day 883.”

I do not need to "consider posting corrections as other media outlets do when the facts are found to be incorrect" — my policy since Day 1 of my coverage has been to post all corrections and opposing views on TaxProf Blog.  Indeed, when Professor Hackney contacted me yesterday, I encouraged him (as I have done with others who have objected to particular posts) to write the response that appears above.

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April 10, 2016 in IRS News, IRS Scandal, Tax | Permalink | Comments (7)

Saturday, April 9, 2016

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Why Universities Hire Co-Deans To Lead Their Law Schools

DeanFollowing up on my coverage of the five law schools who have or have had co-deans (Case Western, LSU, Minnesota, New Mexico, Rutgers):  Inside Higher Ed, Why Universities Hire Two Deans to Lead Their Law Schools:

At first, it was a short-term solution: the law school needed a new dean, and Michael Scharf and Jessica Berg would fill the role together. ...

They started as acting deans, an appointment that could have lasted only weeks or months. Two years later, their titles became permanent. “We came to the conclusion that neither one of us would want to do this solo,” Scharf said. “The provost came around to that line of thinking as well.”

It’s how most co-deanships start: special circumstances, the need to fill an opening immediately, and the belief that the appointment will only be temporary.

But now, more law schools are starting to see the benefits -- beyond short-term logistical convenience -- of having two people fill the role. ...

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April 9, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (4)

WSJ:  Taxation Without Exasperation—It's Time To Adopt Michael Graetz's 'Competitive Tax Plan'

100 2Wall Street Journal, Taxation Without Exasperation:

It doesn’t have to be this way. Raising revenue for the federal government doesn’t have to intrude so much into the lives of so many Americans. Nothing dictates our current system except habit, familiarity and vested interest.

It isn’t hard to imagine a system that would be less of an administrative hassle, less perverse in its incentives and less of an impediment to economic initiative and growth. We could move back to an income tax far more like that of 1913—one that imposes a tolerable burden on upper-middle-class families and the truly rich while leaving the rest of us completely untouched. ...

[A] new tax system that can increase economic freedom, raise just as much revenue as we do today, and foster higher wage and productivity growth is in our grasp. All we need to do is get over our irrational fear of the value-added tax, or VAT, a consumption tax on goods and services that is used by almost all of the world’s rich market democracies.

What would a better tax system look like? It turns out that Mr. Cruz has roughly the right idea. He has come out in favor of a growth-friendly tax on consumption that would allow us to rely less heavily on the income tax. Rather sneakily, he’s calling his consumption tax a “business flat tax,” but everyone knows that it’s a VAT.

The problem with Mr. Cruz’s plan, and it’s a big one, is that he doesn’t use the revenue from the VAT to remove the middle class from the income-tax rolls. He uses it to abolish payroll taxes, the corporate income tax, the estate and gift taxes, and, as if that weren’t enough, to radically reduce income taxes on the rich.

There is a more realistic reform plan out there, only it’s not from one of the presidential candidates. For almost two decades, Michael J. Graetz, a professor at Columbia Law School and one of the country’s leading experts on tax law, has been urging Americans to adopt a saner, more sensible tax system, which he calls the Competitive Tax Plan. The time has come for us to listen.

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April 9, 2016 in Book Club, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Marquette To Fire Tenured Professor For Blogging Unless He Apologizes

McAdamsFollowing up on my previous posts:

Wall Street Journal editorial, Punished for Blogging at Marquette: A Tenured Professor Faces Dismissal After a Blog Went Viral:

Blogging can be dangerous to your livelihood—or at least it can at Marquette University, where a professor may lose his job for expressing the wrong political views.

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April 9, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (21)

The IRS Scandal, Day 1066

IRS Logo 2 Renew America, Most Dangerous Year for Free Speech in U.S. History:

President Obama loses his bully pulpit and billy club on January 20, 1017. That means he has less than nine months to destroy as much of the Constitution as he can, and "fundamentally transform" the United States into something the Founders would not recognize.

We've already seen what his IRS has done to squash the free speech of Tea Party groups, which probably gave him the 2012 election. Despite all the negative publicity and Lois Lerner's wretched invocation of the Fifth Amendment before Congress, the IRS continues to deny conservative groups at a prodigious clip and to leave other conservative groups twisting in the wind.

The IRS rejected a total of 67 tax-exempt status applications last year, and 57 of them were from religious groups. Another 5,681 applications were left in legal no-man's land, which has exactly the same effect as a flat-out denial.

Update:  See the response by Professor Philip Hackney (LSU) in The IRS Scandal, Day 1067 that the Renew America article linked to above "contains incorrect information that appears to me to be a deliberate falsehood."

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April 9, 2016 in IRS News, IRS Scandal | Permalink | Comments (7)

Friday, April 8, 2016

Let The Fed, Not Congress, Set Tax Rates

Fed 2Los Angeles Times op-ed: Forget Congress and Let the Fed Handle Tax Rates, by Aaron Goldzimer (Yale) & David Gamage (UC-Berkeley):

The Democratic presidential candidates want the wealthy to pay a lot more in taxes while the Republican candidates say they think everyone, very much including the wealthy, should pay less. That disagreement has been at the crux of America's rapid-fire budget-related crises, from the near-default in 2011 that sent the stock market reeling, to the automatic, arbitrary budget cuts that Congress keeps having to partially lift.

Here's a solution: Congress should give up the job of setting tax rates altogether.

Politicians in general want to spend but don't want to tax — even Democrats are gun-shy below the top 10% — and they usually do a poor job of both when it comes to managing the ups and downs of the economy. As a result, we often end up with big deficits even in relatively good times (as in the late 1980s and the mid-aughts). And this leaves us with less flexibility, even if only politically, to stimulate the economy when it tanks. In modern times, politicians have not been able to raise taxes much either to shrink the deficit or to help pay for expensive military engagements like the Iraq War, let alone social programs.

Congress should therefore delegate setting the level of taxes to, say, the Federal Reserve.

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April 8, 2016 in Tax | Permalink | Comments (6)

The Most Diverse Law Schools

DiverseFollowing up on my previous posts on two new papers by J.T. Manhire (Texas A&M):

Kevin R. Johnson (Dean, UC-Davis), Measuring Law School Excellence: Diversity Among Law Students, 101 Iowa L. Rev. Online 50 (2015):

Professor J.T. Manhire constructively offers measures of a variety of kinds of diversity among law students that might be worthy of U.S. News consideration. He appears to accept as a starting premise the continued use of the “diversity index” that U.S. News publishes as a supplement to the annual rankings of law schools. As Professor Manhire summarizes his position, “[t]he U.S. News index assumes race/ethnicity to be the sole indicator of diversity. This Essay disagrees and proposes an expansion of a law school diversity index by incorporating, at a minimum, indicators organized across three categories that cause cognitive diversity: identity, experience, and training.” He proposes to improve the index by measuring diversity beyond simply the race and ethnicity of the student body. Professor Manhire ultimately hopes to address the question, “[h]ow do law schools know how diverse their student bodies are?”

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April 8, 2016 in Law School Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (0)

Weekly Tax Roundup

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

Weekly SSRN Tax Roundup

Weekly Student Tax Note Roundup

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April 8, 2016 in Scholarship, Tax, Weekly Student Tax Note Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0)

John Marshall Law School Dean's Email Account Hacked, Confidential Internal Report Taken

John Marshall (Atlanta) (2016)Daily Report, Suit: John Marshall Law Dean's Email Account Hacked for Confidential Report:

A lawsuit filed last week said a hacker targeted the email of Malcolm Morris, dean of Atlanta's John Marshall Law School and circulated the contents of a confidential report dealing with a "shouting match" between an associate and assistant dean that erupted last year.

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April 8, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (2)

NY Times, WSJ Debate Obama Administration's New Anti-Inversion Rules

Treasury Department (2016)Following up on my previous posts (links below) on the Obama Administration's new anti-inversion rules:

New York Times editorial, A Corporate Tax Dodge Gets Harder:

Of course, instead of that straightforward approach, lawmakers, chiefly Republicans, have seized upon the wave of inversions as proof that corporate taxes are too high and must be cut. They say that the only real fix for inversions is a complete overhaul of the corporate tax code. But broad tax reform is pie-in-the-sky in today’s hyper-partisan Congress, and they know it. Their argument does nothing but avoid dealing with these gigantic tax-avoidance schemes.

The Treasury Department deserves credit for tackling the problem. But its regulatory powers, though powerful, are limited. Only Congress can fully stop inversions and the looting of the American corporate taxes.

New York Times op-ed: Free Pfizer! Why Inversions Are Good for the U.S., by Diana Furchtgott-Roth (Manhattan Institute):

Donald J. Trump wants to build a bricks-and-mortar wall to keep immigrants out of the United States. President Obama wants to build a virtual wall to keep companies from leaving. Neither is likely to work.

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April 8, 2016 in IRS News, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Take A Big Gulp And Pay Your Taxes In Cash ... At 7-Eleven

711IRS2IR-2016-56, IRS Offers New Cash Payment Option (Apr. 6, 2016):

The Internal Revenue Service announced today a new payment option for individual taxpayers who need to pay their taxes with cash. In partnership with ACI Worldwide’s OfficialPayments.com and the PayNearMe Company, individuals can now make a payment without the need of a bank account or credit card at over 7,000 7-Eleven stores nationwide.

“We continue to look for new ways to provide services for our taxpayers. Taxpayers have many options to pay their tax bills by direct debit, a check or a credit card, but this provides a new way for people who can only pay their taxes in cash without having to travel to an IRS  Taxpayer Assistance Center," said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.

Individuals wishing to take advantage of this payment option should visit the IRS.gov payments page, select the cash option in the other ways you can pay section and follow the instructions ...

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April 8, 2016 in IRS News, Tax | Permalink | Comments (2)

Call For Papers:  NTA 109th Annual Conference On Taxation

NTA LogoThe National Tax Association has issued a Call for Papers for its 109th Annual Conference on Taxation to be held Nov. 10-12, 2016 in Baltimore:

The 109th Annual Conference on Taxation will cover a broad range of topics including, but not limited to, taxation and tax policies; expenditure policies; government budgeting; intergovernmental fiscal relations; and subnational, national, and international public finance. The conference will focus, as always, on policy-relevant research bearing on taxation and government spending.

You are invited to submit a paper or a complete session. May 1, 2016 is the deadline for submitting papers or sessions. Decisions concerning the inclusion of papers and sessions will be announced in July 2016. Authors of accepted papers will be offered the opportunity to include them in the Proceedings. All presenters will be required to register and pay a conference registration fee.

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April 8, 2016 in Conferences, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Harrison:  A Pervasive Sense Of Faculty Entitlement

Jeff Harrison (Florida), A Pervasive Sense of Entitlement: Tom Waits:

A sense of entitlement comes up quite often on this blog and, actually, in some of my writings. I think what is at the core of a sense of entitlement is a feeling you are an end and not a means. When that is combined with being successful at getting what you want just by demanding it,  the formula is complete.

It happens in legal scholarship where 8000, $30,000 each articles are written each year  without much though going to into what different it makes. In a way you may think this is hypocritical for law profs but it is not. In real life they do not actually care if any of it makes a difference as long as it gets their name out there.

Faculty at law schools have an Everest sized sense of entitlement when it  comes to teaching.

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April 8, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (9)

The IRS Scandal, Day 1065

IRS Logo 2 American Thinker, Should California AG Harris Be Investigated for Tax Code Violations?:

Following revelations that Richard Nixon used the IRS to target his “enemies” for tax audits, Congress amended the Internal Revenue Code to restrict access by federal and state government officials to federal tax return information. The post-Watergate reforms include civil and criminal penalties for inspection and disclosure of federal tax returns not expressly authorized for legitimate and expressly identified law enforcement purposes.

The tax code requires that an annual tax return be filed by charities and other nonprofit organizations -- IRS Form 990. Under Section 6104 of the tax code, those returns of charities and other nonprofits must be made available for public inspection. Now, many Forms 990 are even made available on public websites such as Guidestar.org. The tax code, however, treats the names and addresses of donors listed on those Form 990 Schedule B’s quite differently than any of the other information on that form. Information about donors remain subject to the Code’s strict confidentially provisions.

California attorney general Kamala Harris is the state’s top charity regulator, overseeing California’s Registry of Charitable Trusts. Ms. Harris has decided to bypass federal law expressly requiring her to obtain Schedule B information directly from the IRS on a case-by-case basis if she has a legitimate need for donor information to enforce her state’s charitable solicitation laws. Instead of abiding by federal law, she’s employing a dragnet method, demanding that all charities registering with her office submit their Schedule B donor lists to the Registry in order to solicit contributions from Californians.

Charities even outside the state that wish to communicate with potential supporters in California are first required to register with Harris’ office before they may ask Californians for contributions, giving Ms. Harris tremendous power over “national” nonprofit organizations. By demanding the donor lists of not only California-based charities, but all charities seeking support from Californians, she has extended her reach to violate the right of private association of donors and charities throughout the entire country.

People may wonder why federal confidentiality laws should apply to names and addresses of donors filed with the IRS on Schedule B of charities’ tax returns. In the 1950s, the Alabama attorney general wanted to disrupt the civil rights movement in his state by obtaining the names of financial supporters of the NAACP. The Supreme Court shut down his demands in the landmark case NAACP v. Alabama. The court said that forced disclosure to government officials of the NAACP’s financial backers and members would seriously harm the right of private association protected by the First Amendment.

These principles were the law of the land when Congress enacted the donor confidentiality provisions, and are reflected in the federal confidentiality laws helping to protect charities and their donors from abuse and intimidation by government officials.

Lois Lerner’s IRS was caught violating the tax code confidentiality laws when it disclosed donor names and addresses of the National Organization for Marriage to opponents of that nonprofit organization. In addition, IRS emails obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show Lerner’s IRS gave the Federal Election Commission “detailed, confidential information concerning the tax exempt application status and returns of conservative groups” in violation of the tax code’s confidentiality laws. The tax code’s penalties applicable to acquisition, inspection, and disclosure of charities’ confidential federal tax return information applies to state officials.

Ms. Harris’ actions make a statement that she believes she is above the rule of law, and she’s willing to use the heavy hand of her office to abuse Americans’ right to private association. The Obama Justice Department has given many passes to lawbreaking by government officials who are political allies, and the ambitious candidate for U.S. Senate Kamala Harris could also escape investigation by this administration for violating federal law. However, Congress and the next administration do appear to have grounds to question Ms. Harris about these matters, and take a hard look into whether she and her office are engaged in criminal violations of the federal tax code.

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April 8, 2016 in IRS News, IRS Scandal, Tax | Permalink | Comments (3)

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Kahng Presents Who Owns Human Capital? Today At Indiana

Kahng (2016)Lily Kahng (Seattle) presents Who Owns Human Capital?, 93 Wash. U. L. Rev. ___ (2016), at Indiana-Bloomington today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Leandra Lederman:

This Article analyzes the tax law’s capital income preference through the lens of intellectual capital, an increasingly important driver of economic productivity whose value derives primarily from workers’ knowledge, experience and skills. The Article discusses how business owners increasingly are able to “propertize” labor into intellectual capital — to control their workers and appropriate the returns on their labor through the expansive use of intellectual property laws, contract and employment laws, and other legal mechanisms. The Article then shows how the tax law provides significant subsidies to the process of propertization and thereby contributes to the inequitable distribution of returns between business owners and workers. The Article’s analysis further reveals the tax law’s fundamental capital-labor distinction to be questionable, perhaps even illusory, an insight which has profound implications for the tax law.

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April 7, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Blank Presents The Timing Of Tax Transparency Today At Duke

Blank (2016)Joshua Blank (NYU) presents The Timing of Tax Transparency, 90 S. Cal. L. Rev. ___ (2017), at Duke today as part of its Tax Policy Workshop Series hosted by Lawrence Zelenak:

Fairness in the administration of the tax law is the subject of intense debate in the United States. As recent headlines reveal, the Internal Revenue Service has been accused of failing to enforce the tax law equitably in its review of tax-exempt status applications by political organizations, the international tax structures of multinational corporations, and the estate tax returns of millionaires, among other areas. Many have argued that greater “tax transparency” would better empower the public to hold the IRS accountable and the IRS to defend itself against accusations of malfeasance. Mandatory public disclosure of taxpayers’ tax return information is often proposed as a way to achieve greater tax transparency. Yet, in addition to concerns regarding exposure of personal and proprietary information, broad public disclosure measures pose potential threats to the taxing authority’s ability to enforce the tax law.

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April 7, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Lederman Presents Does Enforcement Crowd Out Voluntary Tax Compliance? At Tulane

Ledderman (2016)Leandra Lederman (Indiana-Bloomnington) presented Does Enforcement Crowd Out Voluntary Tax Compliance? at Tulane as part of its Regulation and Coordination Workshop Series:

Governments commonly use deterrence methods, such as audits and the imposition of penalties, to foster compliance with tax laws. Although this approach is consistent with economic modeling of tax compliance, some scholars caution that deterrence may backfire, “crowding out” intrinsic motivations to pay taxes and thus reducing compliance. This article analyzes the evidence to date to determine the extent of such an effect. Field studies suggest that deterrence tools, such as audits, generally are highly effective at increasing tax collections but that crowding out may occur in some contexts, with respect to certain subgroups of taxpayers.

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April 7, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Prisinzano & Yagan Present Business In The U.S.: Who Owns It And How Much Do They Pay? At NYU

NYU Law (2016)Richard Prisinzano (U.S. Treasury Department, Office of Tax Analysis) & Danny Yagan (UC-Berkeley) presented Business in the United States: Who Owns It and How Much Do They Pay? at NYU as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Daniel Shaviro and Chris Sanchirico:

"Pass-through" businesses like partnerships and S-corporations now generate over half of U.S. business income and account for much of the post-1980 rise in the top-1% income share. We use administrative tax data from 2011 to identify pass-through business owners and estimate how much tax they pay. We present three findings. (1) Relative to traditional business income, pass-through business income is substantially more concentrated among high-earners. (2) Partnership ownership is opaque: 20% of the income goes to unclassifiable partners, and 15% of the income is earned in circularly owned partnerships. (3) The average federal income tax rate on U.S. pass-through business income is 19%--much lower than the average rate on traditional corporations. If pass-through activity had remained at 1980's low level, strong but straightforward assumptions imply that the 2011 average U.S. tax rate on total U.S. business income would have been 28% rather than 24%, and tax revenue would have been approximately $100 billion higher.

Dan Shaviro (NYU):

This is an important contribution, or rather the first of what are likely to be a series of important contributions, that attempt to increase our knowledge by making use of U.S. federal tax return information about businesses in the U.S. that are taxed as pass-throughs (i.e., partnerships or S corporations). In particular, it seeks to link information from partnership-level Form 1065 returns to that from partner-level Schedule K-1 returns, thereby presenting a comprehensive picture of who reports partnership income and how much U.S. federal income tax is paid on such income. In a more rational world, this would have been done years ago, and doing it would be easier than it actually is. I'll focus here just on partnerships, although there is also some information in the paper in re. S corporations.

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April 7, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Stark Presents Regional Taxation And Regional Tax Base Sharing In State Tax Reform Today At Colorado

Stark (2014)Kirk Stark (UCLA) presents Regional Taxation and Regional Tax Base Sharing in State Tax Reform at Colorado today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by David Hasen and Sloan Speck:

This article describes and evaluates a specific subset of state tax reforms—i.e., those involving regional approaches to funding subnational public goods. Reforms examined include those where policymakers devise new multijurisdictional fiscal arrangements to address regional objectives that conventional local governments, by virtue of their more limited geographic scope, are unlikely to tackle. As used in this article, the term “region” refers to a geographic area (1) constituting less than the entire jurisdiction of a state, and (2) encompassing more than one local government jurisdiction. A “regional tax” is therefore any tax (fee, assessment, etc....) limited in its application to a geographic area so defined. A closely related policy is “regional tax base sharing”—i.e., the imposition of a tax on a base that is shared among several local jurisdictions, with the proceeds distributed among those localities.

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April 7, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Deryck van Rensburg (President Of Global Ventures, Coca-Cola) Named Dean Of Pepperdine B-School

Pepperdine 4Press Release:

Deryck J. van Rensburg has been named dean of the Graziadio School of Business and Management at Pepperdine University. The former president of global ventures at The Coca-Cola Company will begin his responsibilities at the Graziadio Business School on November 1, 2016.

“After a careful search, with thoughtful faculty engagement throughout, I believe we have found just the right leader for this next chapter in the history of the Graziadio School of Business and Management,” says Pepperdine University president Andrew K. Benton. “In Deryck van Rensburg we have found an experienced, global strategic leader for our future. We welcome Dr. van Rensburg and his family to the Pepperdine community with great anticipation.”

Van Rensburg brings to Pepperdine 32 years of international business experience in leadership roles with The Coca-Cola Company, and formerly with Unilever PLC, where he held roles in the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom, Austria, Greece, Romania, Belgium, and South Africa.

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April 7, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (0)

As LSAT & MBE Scores Fall, 1L Enrollment Needs To Fall To 25,000 (From 35,500 in 2015)

LSATMBETaxProf Blog op-ed:  As LSAT and MBE Scores Fall, 1L Enrollment Needs To Fall To 25,000 (From 35,500), by David Barnhizer (Cleveland State):

I couldn’t stop looking at the numbers in the recently posted depiction of the severe decline in Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) results. The post included a chart showing the matriculation data for law school First-Year enrollments in the 2010—2015 period.  In what will be a brief discussion I want to discuss the information provided in the chart.  It is broken out according to range of LSAT scores (165 and above, 160-164, 155-159, 150-154, and below 150).

LSAT               2010     % of Enrollment   2015     % of Enrollment   Change
165 +:             9500               19.0%         5600               15.7%          --3900
160-164:      10,700               21.4%         5800               16.3%          --4900
155-159:      11,600               23.2%         7800               21.9%          --3800
150-154:      10,600               21.2%         7800               21.9%          --2800
Below 150:    7,000               14.0%         8500               24.0%          +1500
First Year Enrollment 2010: 49,900     First Year Enrollment 2015: 35,500

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April 7, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (6)

Law Firms Increasingly Use 'Moneyball' Analytics In Lateral Partner Hiring

MoneyballThe American Lawyer, How to Hire a Home-Run Lateral? Look at Their Stats:

Recruiting lateral partners is starting to look more like scouting for Major League Baseball.

Law firms are beginning to use statistical analysis similar to the "sabermetrics" methods used to evaluate ballplayers and made famous by the book and film "Moneyball." Using performance-oriented data, firms try to create profiles of the types of lawyers they need to hire to help boost profits, then search for candidates who fit the profile. They may also use the tools to estimate whether a certain candidate would help the firm's bottom line. More than 20 percent of Am Law 200 firms are starting to use these techniques, according to recruiters and software providers.

There's certainly room for improvement in the hiring process. An ALM Legal Intelligence lateral hiring report with Group Dewey Consulting released last fall found that 30 percent of lateral partners returned less than 30 percent of their expected book of business.

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April 7, 2016 in Legal Education | Permalink | Comments (2)

Law Student Estate Planning/Estate & Gift Tax Writing Competitions

ACTECThe Legal Education Committee of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC), 2016 Law Student Writing Competition:

This competition is open to any law student in good standing (full-time or part-time) who is currently or recently enrolled at the time of submission or during the 90-day period prior to submission as a J.D. or LL.M. candidate in an ABA-accredited law school within the United States or its possessions.

ABA RPP&T (2016)ABA Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law, 2016 Law Student Writing Contest:

Open to any law school student in good standing, over the age of 18, who is currently attending an ABA-accredited law school within the United States and its possessions, and who is a citizen or legal permanent resident of the United States.

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April 7, 2016 in Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Brunson:  The Taxation Of Mutual Funds

Samuel D. Brunson (Loyola-Chicago), The Taxation of RICs: Replicating Portfolio Investment or Eliminating Double Taxation?, 20 Stan. J.L. Bus. & Fin. 222 (2015):

Mutual FundsMutual funds and other regulated investment companies currently occupy a central space in American households’ financial lives. Is spite of their near-ubiquity, though, regulated investment companies occupy a strange tax limbo as quasi-pass-through entities, neither fully taxable nor fully tax-transparent. To qualify for this quasi-pass-through status, regulated investment companies must, among other things, distribute the bulk of their income to shareholders annually.

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April 7, 2016 in Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

The IRS Scandal, Day 1064

IRS Logo 2 Washington Free Beacon, IRS Denied Tax-Exempt Status to 57 Religious Groups in 2015; 5,681 Applications Left in Limbo:

The IRS denied tax-exempt status to 57 religious or charitable groups in 2015, according to recent data from agency.

The IRS rejected a total of 67 applications for tax-exempt status in 2015, and religious groups comprised the majority of denials. There were 92,653 total applications by religious and charitable groups in 2015. Of those applications, 86,915 were approved, 57 were denied, and 5,681 were left in limbo.

Attorney Jordan Sekulow, executive director of the American Center for Law and Justice, represents a number of conservative and pro-life non-profit organizations that have faced long battles to have their tax-exempt status approved by the IRS. Among his clients, two are still awaiting determination by the IRS—one group has been waiting for more than six years, and another for nearly six years. “The process is supposed to be a fairly quick process,” says Sekulow. “If the IRS needs more information, they’re supposed to ask you for that.” ...

Sekulow isn’t persuaded that the IRS is being open about the process. “The IRS was wrong then and while the agency says it has stopped such discriminatory action, there’s really nothing that leads us to believe that this administration has really changed,” he continued.

Sekulow is taking his clients’ cases to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals next week to challenge the IRS’ targeting of conservative groups. Many of the groups he represents that have gotten approval have had to put up with demands by the IRS for Internet passwords and usernames, donor lists, and charitable activities of family members.

Sekulow also stressed that the waiting period these groups have to go through can be as destructive as being denied tax-exempt status. “The IRS is playing the ‘delay game’—keeping these organizations guessing about the status of their applications and ultimately whether their applications will be approved,” said Sekulow. “I think that keeping people hanging in the balance can be as destructive as an outright denial because lengthy delays can stop the momentum that many of these start-up groups experienced. Lengthy delays may not only sap the momentum of a group, it produces a chilling effect on the constitutionally protected speech,” he said.

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April 7, 2016 in IRS News, IRS Scandal, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Burman Presents An Analysis Of The Ted Cruz And Bernie Sanders Tax Plans Today At Georgetown

Burman (2016)Len Burman (Tax Policy Center) presents An Analysis of the Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders Tax Plans at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop Series hosted by John Brooks and Itai Grinberg:

Presidential candidate Ted Cruz’s tax proposal would (1) repeal the corporate income tax, payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare, and estate and gift taxes; (2) collapse the seven individual income tax rates to a single 10 percent rate, increase the standard deduction, and eliminate most other deductions and credits; and (3) introduce a new 16 percent broad-based consumption tax. The plan would cut taxes at most income levels, although the highest-income households would benefit the most and the poor the least. Federal tax revenues would decline by $8.6 trillion (3.6 percent of gross domestic product) over a decade.

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April 6, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (2)

Prisinzano Presents Business In The U.S.: Who Owns It And How Much Do They Pay? Today At Penn

Penn (2016)Richard Prisinzano (U.S. Treasury Department, Office of Tax Analysis) presents Business in the United States: Who Owns It and How Much Do They Pay? at Pennsylvania today as part of its Center for Tax Law and Policy Seminar Series hosted by Chris Sanchirico and Reed Shuldiner:

"Pass-through" businesses like partnerships and S-corporations now generate over half of U.S. business income and account for much of the post-1980 rise in the top-1% income share. We use administrative tax data from 2011 to identify pass-through business owners and estimate how much tax they pay. We present three findings. (1) Relative to traditional business income, pass-through business income is substantially more concentrated among high-earners. (2) Partnership ownership is opaque: 20% of the income goes to unclassifiable partners, and 15% of the income is earned in circularly owned partnerships. (3) The average federal income tax rate on U.S. pass-through business income is 19%--much lower than the average rate on traditional corporations. If pass-through activity had remained at 1980's low level, strong but straightforward assumptions imply that the 2011 average U.S. tax rate on total U.S. business income would have been 28% rather than 24%, and tax revenue would have been approximately $100 billion higher.

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April 6, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Faulhaber Presents Designing R&D Credits And Patent Boxes In The Age Of BEPS At Northwestern

FaulhaberLily Faulhaber (Georgetown) presented Tax Incentives for Innovation: Designing R&D Credits and Patent Boxes in the Age of BEPS at Northwestern yesterday as part of its Advanced Topics in Taxation  Workshop Series hosted by Herbert Beller, Charlotte CraneDavid Cameron, Philip Postlewaite, Jeffrey Sheffield, and Robert Wootton:

For decades, governments have turned to their tax codes to support research and development and innovation. In recent years, countries have added yet another tool to their repertoire of tax incentives for R&D: innovation boxes, sometimes referred to as patent boxes or IP boxes, which provide benefits to income from intellectual property. In response to the increasing number of innovation boxes, the forty-four OECD and G-20 member countries involved in the recent BEPS Project developed a requirement known as the nexus approach that places limits on the design of these tax incentives.

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April 6, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Lipman Presents The Individual Tax Penalty And The Affordable Care Act Today At UNLV

LipmanFrancine Lipman (UNLV) presents Irresponsibly Taxing Irresponsibility: The Individual Tax Penalty and the Affordable Care Act, 23 Geo. J. on Poverty L. & Pol'y ___ (2016) (with James Owens (J.D. 2015, UNLV)) at the Western Decision Sciences Institute Annual Meeting today at UNLV:

This article first details and then revises the newly implemented penalty tax (the Shared Responsibility Payment or the “SRP”) under the Affordable Care Act. The SRP was designed by Congress to ensure that every American obtains minimum essential healthcare coverage so that comprehensive and affordable health care coverage can be achieved for all qualifying Americans. While the penalty tax was deemed constitutional by the United States Supreme Court, it is extremely complicated and has challenged many Americans especially lower-income individuals.

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April 6, 2016 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Pfizer Abandons Planned Merger With Allergan <24 Hours After Obama Administration's New Anti-Inversion Rules

Allergen PfizerFollowing up on yesterday's posts:

New York Times, Pfizer and Allergan Are Said to End Merger as Tax Rules Tighten:

Pfizer plans to abandon its $152 billion merger with Allergan — the largest deal yet aimed at helping an American company shed its United States corporate citizenship for a lower tax bill — just days after the Obama administration introduced new tax rules. ...

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April 6, 2016 in Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)