Paul L. Caron
Dean




Thursday, February 29, 2024

Schaffa Presents The Regressivity Of Complexity Today At UCLA

Daniel Schaffa (Richmond; Google Scholar) presents The Regressivity of Complexity at UCLA today as part of its Colloquium on Tax Policy and Public Finance hosted by Kirk Stark and Jason Oh: 

Daniel schaffaThis article argues that complexity in the tax system is regressive. The claim, in essence, is that complexity disproportionally creates burdens for those of lesser means and opportunities for those of greater means. Increases in complexity, thus, generally speaking, result in outcomes relatively less favorable for those of lesser means and relatively more favorable for those of greater means.

Intuitive as some may find this claim, it is not a standard conclusion in the tax complexity literature. It faces two related difficulties. The first is a series of counterclaims, including most notably that many of the features of the tax system that add progressivity also add complexity. The second difficulty is that there is no consensus definition of tax complexity, nor an accepted framework with which to analyze tax complexity, making definitive, general claims about tax complexity elusive.

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February 29, 2024 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Preview Of The 2024-25 U.S. News Law School Rankings: Median UGPA

Following up on yesterday's post, Preview Of The 2024-25 U.S. News Law School Rankings: Acceptance Rate

Rank School 2023 UGPA 2022 UGPA
1 Texas A&M 3.97 3.93 (5)
2 Yale 3.96 3.94 (2)
3 Alabama 3.95 3.95 (1)
3 Stanford 3.95 3.92 (6)
3 Washington Univ. 3.95 3.94 (2)
6 BYU 3.94 3.92 (6)
6 Chicago 3.94 3.91 (9)
6 Virginia 3.94 3.94 (2)
9 Harvard 3.93 3.92 (6)
10 Northwestern 3.92 3.89 (14)
10 Penn 3.92 3.9 (10)
10 UCLA 3.92 3.9 (10)
13 Florida 3.91 3.9 (10)
13 Georgetown 3.91 3.86 (21)
15 Arizona State 3.90 3.85 (23)
15 Columbia 3.90 3.87 (16)
15 Cornell 3.90 3.87 (16)
15 NYU 3.90 3.88 (15)
19 George Mason 3.89 3.83 (29)
19 Vanderbilt 3.89 3.9 (10)
21 USC 3.88 3.87 (16)
22 Duke 3.87 3.85 (23)
22 UC-Berkeley 3.87 3.83 (29)
24 Boston Univ. 3.86 3.84 (26)
24 Indiana (Maurer) 3.86 3.81 (34)
24 Pepperdine 3.86 3.85 (23)
24 Texas 3.86 3.84 (26)
28 Florida State 3.85 3.83 (29)
28 George Washington 3.85 3.84 (26)
28 Michigan 3.85 3.83 (29)
28 Minnesota 3.85 3.83 (29)
28 Utah 3.85 3.87 (16)
33 Georgia 3.83 3.87 (16)
33 Notre Dame 3.83 3.81 (34)
33 Ohio State 3.83 3.86 (21)
33 SMU 3.83 3.71 (60)
33 Wayne State 3.83 3.8 (36)
38 Emory 3.82 3.8 (36)
39 Colorado 3.81 3.72 (51)
40 Cincinnati 3.80 3.73 (48)
40 San Diego 3.80 3.74 (45)
40 Villanova 3.80 3.76 (39)
43 Cardozo 3.79 3.76 (39)
43 University of Arizona 3.79 3.76 (39)
43 Wake Forest 3.79 3.72 (51)
43 Wisconsin 3.79 3.73 (48)
47 North Carolina 3.78 3.77 (38)
47 Tennessee 3.78 3.76 (39)
47 UNLV 3.78 3.74 (45)
50 Belmont 3.77 3.7 (64)
50 Boston College 3.77 3.74 (45)
50 Penn State-Univ. Park 3.77 3.72 (51)
50 William & Mary 3.77 3.75 (43)

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February 29, 2024 in Law School Rankings, Legal Ed Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink

Brooks & Gamage: The Original Meaning Of The Sixteenth Amendment

John R. Brooks (Fordham; Google Scholar) & David Gamage (Missouri-Columbia; Google Scholar), The Original Meaning of the Sixteenth Amendment, 102 Wash. U. L. Rev. ___ (2024):

Washington university law reviewThe Sixteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution enshrines Congress’s “power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived.” Challenges to the exercise of that power have typically turned on whether the thing being taxed is “income” or not. In the most recent example, the 2023 Supreme Court case of Moore v. United States, taxpayers have argued that the Sixteenth Amendment only authorizes taxation of realized income—this is, that gain from appreciated property can only be taxed as “income” when there has been a sale or conversion of that property.

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February 29, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Raskolnikov Presents Law For The Rich At Cardozo

Alex Raskolnikov (Columbia) presented Law for the Rich, 109 Minn. L. Rev. ___ (2024), at Cardozo yesterday as part of its Faculty Workshop Series: 

Alex raskolnikovWith top incomes and wealth reaching historic highs, scholars and politicians have proposed new taxes and novel legal rules aimed at reversing the emergence of the new Gilded Age. Yet while new taxes target the rich directly by imposing greater burdens only on those with incomes or wealth above multi-million-dollar thresholds, none of the proposed legal reforms do anything of the sort. There appears to be no interest in changing property law, corporate law, antitrust law, or labor law, among others, to have special, more burdensome rules applicable only to the rich. This Essay asks: Why not? Why shy away from a separate law for the rich if one supports both progressive taxation and distributionally-informed legal rules in general?

This puzzle, it turns out, is surprisingly difficult to solve. Neither political philosophy nor economic analysis nor practical design considerations offer a plausible answer. Looking for clues outside of legal theory suggests that a separate law for the rich would be widely viewed as unfair because it imposes burdens that are obvious, highly concentrated, and possibly contrary to one of the fundamental elements of law itself. 

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February 29, 2024 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Clarke Presents Income Inequality and the Corporate Sector Today At Northwestern

Conor Clarke (Washington University; Google Scholar) presents Income Inequality and the Corporate Sector (with Wojciech Kopczuk (Columbia; Google Scholar)) at Northwestern today as part of its Advanced Topics in Taxation Colloquium hosted by Ari Glogower:

Conor clarkeIn recent decades, scholars have turned to tax data to study the distribution of United States income and wealth. In more recent years, the focus has expanded from information that appears on individual income tax returns to a broader set of data. This shift partly reflects the observation that what appears on individual tax returns is only a subset of “national income” — a subset that is subject to change as laws and incentives change. But the use of both individual tax data and national accounts data has been controversial, and one important piece of this controversy is the role of corporate income and the corporate sector. We provide a framework for thinking about the historical and conceptual relationship between income, inequality, and the corporate sector. We make several contributions. First, we assemble a variety of previously unused data to study the corporate sector and corporate income over the long run. Second, we survey and highlight the importance of long-run sectoral and legal changes — including some that have gone unappreciated in the last thirty years, such as the rise and fall of the so-called General Utilities doctrine — to the allocation of income between the individual and corporate sector and the study of inequality. 

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February 28, 2024 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Attorneys Who Argue At Supreme Court Skew Male, Ivy League

Bloomberg Law Op-Ed:  Attorneys Who Argue at Supreme Court Skew Male, Ivy League, by Adam Feldman (Empirical SCOTUS):

Very few attorneys have a chance to argue before the US Supreme Court. In part, this is because the justices only take about 1% of the petitions filed with the court, but it’s also because the same attorneys argue before the court again and again. ... 

To dive into an analysis of common characteristics of top attorneys before the Supreme Court, I used a list of the 55 attorneys who argued there the most between October 2016 and December 2023.

There is significant homogeneity among this group, with the most common profile a male who graduated with a law degree from Harvard, Yale, or Stanford. ...

Bloomberg SCOTUS

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February 28, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

The Legal Imitation Game: Generative AI's Incompatibility With Clinical Legal Education

Jake Karr (NYU) & Jason Schultz (NYU; Google Scholar), The Legal Imitation Game: Generative AI's Incompatibility with Clinical Legal Education, 92 Fordham L. Rev. __ (2024):

Fordham Law ReviewLegal practitioners are currently in the midst of a technological maelstrom. Generative artificial intelligence (GenAI), and specifically Large Language Models (LLMs), are taking the legal world by storm, and GenAI evangelists and skeptics are furiously debating the potential impacts of the technology. Will the introduction of GenAI turn lawyers into “prompt engineers”? Will it entirely eliminate the need for human lawyers, at least for certain repetitive legal tasks and work product? Or are we living through yet another Big Tech hype cycle?

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February 28, 2024 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Mehrotra Presents The Rise And Fall Of The 1970s National Value-Added Tax To Fund Education Today At Toronto

Ajay K. Mehrotra (Northwestern; Google Scholar) presents Nixon’s VAT: Lawyers, Economists, and the Rise and Fall of the 1970s National Value-Added Tax to Fund Education at Tornoto today as part of its James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop hosted by Ben Alarie:

Ajay mehrotraConclusion
It is well-known by now that income and wealth inequalities have been soaring for the past half-century across the globe. Although some developing countries have seen a decrease in poverty and a rising middle class during that period, much of the world has experienced dramatic increases in within-country economic disparities. In the United States, the growing concentration of wealth has been particularly pronounced, especially at the top end of the socioeconomic spectrum. While the details of this increase have been debated recently by experts, most agree that both income and wealth inequality have increased significantly.

One prominent obstacle to addressing U.S. inequality has been the fractured nature of the modern American fiscal and social welfare state. The combination of a highly salient federal system of direct and progressive taxation and a more shrouded social welfare state has led to a unique type of political cognitive dissonance that, in turn, has helped perpetuate the myth of the “overtaxed” American—a myth that has been exploited by anti-statist politicians and lawmakers for decades.

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February 28, 2024 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Preview Of The 2024-25 U.S. News Law School Rankings: Acceptance Rate

Rank School  2023 Acceptance Rate 2022 Acceptance Rate
1 Yale 5.58 5.72 (1)
2 Stanford 7.26 6.88 (2)
3 Harvard 9.58 10.06 (4)
4 Penn 9.88 9.74 (3)
5 Duke 10.51 10.74 (6)
6 Virginia 11.46 12.88 (10)
7 Columbia 12.23 11.93 (7)
8 USC 12.52 12.7 (9)
9 Michigan 12.58 13.51 (11)
10 Chicago 12.78 14.24 (12)
11 Boston College 13.38 10.16 (5)
12 George Mason 14.03 19.63 (30)
13 Texas A&M 14.64 16.33 (20)
14 Georgia 14.77 14.83 (16)
15 Texas 14.9 14.56 (14)
16 UC-Berkeley 14.92 12.47 (8)
17 Northwestern 15.53 15.05 (17)
18 North Carolina 16.27 14.61 (15)
19 NYU 16.76 15.65 (19)
19 Vanderbilt 16.76 14.53 (13)
21 UCLA 16.8 15.5 (18)
22 Florida 17.01 16.94 (23)
23 Washington Univ. 17.16 18.02 (26)
24 Baylor 17.77 23.87 (33)
25 Boston Univ. 17.82 16.33 (20)
26 UC-Irvine 18.18 19.45 (28)
27 Cornell 19.3 17.44 (24)
28 Georgetown 19.57 17.64 (25)
29 Florida State 21.12 19.58 (29)
30 Fordham 21.13 18.79 (27)
31 Arizona State 21.28 19.65 (31)
32 Golden Gate 22.43 25.53 (38)
33 Villanova 22.5 16.47 (22)
34 Notre Dame 24.39 24.58 (34)
35 Florida Int'l 25.18 22.6 (32)
36 Alabama 26.62 25.78 (39)
37 William & Mary 27.31 46.01 (116)
38 Wayne State 27.41 35.49 (78)
39 Pepperdine 28.18 27.68 (41)
40 George Washington 28.72 25 (36)
41 BYU 28.77 31.41 (56)
42 Hawaii 28.8 29.65 (48)
43 UC-Davis 28.99 25.18 (37)
44 Connecticut 29.31 27.99 (42)
45 University of Arizona 29.35 24.93 (35)
46 North Texas 30.06 33.3 (63)
47 Maryland 30.18 29.49 (47)
48 Utah 30.2 31.95 (57)
49 Tennessee 30.21 33.18 (61)
50 Chapman 30.68 28.7 (45)

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February 28, 2024 in Law School Rankings, Legal Ed Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink

Gómez: Taxation’s Limits

Luís Calderón Gómez (Cardozo; Google Scholar), Taxation’s Limits, 119 Nw. U. L. Rev. __ (2024):

Northwestern Law Review (2022)Countless pages have been devoted to the question of why should everyone pay tax, yet its obverse has gone largely unnoticed: why should some people and organizations not pay tax? Our tax system exempts from ordinary income taxation a wide and diverse array of people and organizations engaged in significant economic activity—from parents providing childcare services for their family, to consular activities and charities operating animal shelters—seemingly without a convincing explanation. Perhaps as a result of the dizzying diversity of activities that have been exempted from tax, scholars and policymakers have eluded comprehensively or coherently justifying our exemption regimes.

This Article develops a novel normative theory that rationalizes and justifies our current tax exemption regime. Rather than conceiving exemptions as subsidies or individual deviations from a normative base explainable by ordinary politics, the Article argues that exemptions are best understood as mapping the “limits” of tax. These limits are neither arbitrary nor merely a collection of individual subsidies to favored activities; rather, they are best seen as being reflective of deeper collective socio-political judgments about the scope of the State and the public sphere.

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February 28, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

The Intentional Pursuit Of Purpose: Nurturing Students’ Authentic Motivation For Practicing Law

Katya S. Cronin (George Washington), The Intentional Pursuit of Purpose: Nurturing Students’ Authentic Motivation for Practicing Law, 28 Legal Writing 159 (2024): 

“Why do you want to pursue a career in the law?” Nearly every aspiring attorney answers this question as part of their law school application personal statement. They pour their hopes, dreams, and challenges into the answer to this question—their formative struggles, deeply held values, and resolve to make the world a better place as legal practitioners. Soon after starting law school, however, law students turn their attention from core aspirations to immediate concerns. Forgotten and slowly choked by the thorns of competition, prestige, and external validation, law students’ internal sense of self and purpose begin to wither away until, at the end of three years in law school, they are just a faint shadow of what once was. Unmoored from their personal values and seeing no higher meaning behind their efforts, many law students soon “grow up” to be directionless, helpless, and hopeless lawyers in a profession marked by profound unhappiness.

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February 28, 2024 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Brown Presents A Survey And Critique Of International Tax Governance Reform Today At Georgetown

Karen B. Brown (George Washington) presents A Survey and Critique of International Tax Governance Reform at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop hosted by Emily Satterthwaite and Dayanand Manoli: 

KarenBrowncroppedThe most far-reaching international tax reform proposal in nearly one hundred years unfolded under the auspices of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) largely without input from the non-OECD nations in Sub-Saharan Africa. That area, hard hit by the multiple calamities of covid-19 and other devastating diseases, climate change, inflation engendered by wars waged inside and outside its confines, has been designated as key to the survival of the remainder of the world. The prospect of the future progression of tax reform without meaningful initial input from the Sub-Saharan region is untenable. A truly inclusive global tax governance will restore legitimacy and integrity to reform efforts.

February 27, 2024 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

More Criticism Of The Sanctions Imposed On Penn Law Prof Amy Wax

Following up on last week's post, Amy Wax Appeals Sanctions Imposed By Penn Faculty Senate (1-Year Suspension At 50% Pay, Loss Of Chair):  Brian Leiter (Chicago), Penn Faculty Hearing Board Recommended Sanctions for Amy Wax Last Summer; She Is Appealing:

Wax (2023)Here is the letter from the "Hearing Board" to former President Magill regarding Professor Wax.  The only portion that isn't obviously outrageous is the section on violations of student privacy (although Professor Wax's attorney also disputes that in the appeal.)  The rest of the letter was written by someone with no knowledge of the law of academic freedom.   Almost all the evidence of "unprofessional" conduct involves extramural speech, which is not covered by the standards applicable in professional scholarship or pedagogy:   this is just a breathtaking confusion about core AAUP academic freedom principles, which vitiates almost the entire letter.

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February 27, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Call For Papers: 115th Annual Society Of Legal Scholars Conference

Society of legal scholars annual conference
Call for Papers for the Tax Section of the 115th Annual Society of Legal Scholars Conference (Sept. 3-5, 2024): 

The theme of the conference is “Learning from Others: Lessons for Legal Scholars?”
As scholars, we interact with others – students; fellow academics; legal practitioners; the wider public – and the 2024 conference will reflect on the gains we can achieve from such interaction in a global academic environment. The conference will examine this theme in two ways. First, as scholars attending the SLS conference, we benefit greatly from meeting colleagues from different backgrounds and disciplines and, notably, from other legal jurisdictions (both within and outside the common law world). What can we gain from taking an international or comparative perspective to our work? To what extent do different perspectives, such as socio-legal, interdisciplinary or historical viewpoints, assist our research? Secondly, one of the significant elements of the conference is the inclusion of papers from both junior and senior scholars. What lessons can we gain from each other, both in terms of mentoring and in recognising the need to promote the interests of early career legal scholars and offering support for those entering the academy? No scholar is an island. The SLS provides a positive inclusive environment for legal academics at whatever stage of their career to engage with each other and learn valuable lessons from a diverse and inclusive community of legal scholars. Doctoral students are very welcome and are encouraged to submit papers for consideration in the Subject Sections Programme.

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February 27, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Conferences, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Bush: The FTC Needs To Intervene In Law School Rankings

Darren Bush (Houston; Google Scholar), Why the FTC Needs to Intervene in Law School Rankings:

US News (2023)Since the boycott of the U.S. News and World Report Rankings (“U.S. News Rankings”) by a group of law schools, the U.S. News Rankings have gone a bit haywire. The top law schools, all highly ranked, refused to submit data to U.S. News. Other schools followed their lead. As a result, U.S. News changed its rankings, perhaps focusing a bit more on publicly available data.

But that has led to speculation of potentially wild results. Spivey Consulting projects that some law schools (like Buffalo Law) will drop by over 80 points, while others (like Maine) are expected to climb precipitously. In the past, such dramatic ranking shifts were somewhat limited, but with the changing rankings, and the apparent new norm of frequent changes to methodologies, such radical changes might be in our future. It is striking, though, how the fluctuations rarely seem to affect the higher ranked schools. ...

In this essay, I list five problems with the U.S. News Rankings, and I offer a few concrete solutions. ...

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February 27, 2024 in Law School Rankings, Legal Ed Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink

SSRN Tax Professor Rankings

SSRN Logo (2018)SSRN has updated its monthly ranking of 750 American and international law school faculties and 3,000 law professors by (among other things) the number of paper downloads from the SSRN database.  Here is the new list (through February 1, 2024) of the Top 25 U.S. Tax Professors in two of the SSRN categories: all-time downloads and recent downloads (within the past 12 months):

    All-Time     Recent
1 Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan)  228,882 1 Jonathan Choi (USC) 25,712
2 Daniel Hemel (NYU) 132,793 2 Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan) 11,337
3 Dan Shaviro (NYU) 128,134 3 Kristin Hickman (Minnesota) 10,825
4 Lily Batchelder (NYU) 127,790 4 David Gamage (Missouri-Columbia) 4,082
5 David Gamage (Missouri-Columbia) 127,531 5 Daniel Hemel (NYU) 4,044
6 Darien Shanske (UC-Davis) 119,435 6 Bridget Crawford (Pace) 3,883
7 David Kamin (NYU) 114,704 7 Kyle Rozema (Northwestern) 3,785
8 Cliff Fleming (BYU)    108,735 8 Kim Clausing (UCLA)     3,619
9 Manoj Viswanathan (UC-SF) 105,045 9 Zachary Liscow (Yale) 3,466
10 Ari Glogower (Northwestern) 104,590 10 D. Dharmapala (UC-Berkeley) 3,327
11 Rebecca Kysar (Fordham) 104,134 11 Steve Black (Texas Tech) 3,319
12 D. Dharmapala (UC-Berkeley) 52,713 12 Louis Kaplow (Harvard) 3,215
13 Michael Simkovic (USC) 49,124 13 Ruth Mason (Virginia) 3,116
14 Louis Kaplow (Harvard) 42,364 14 Robert Sitkoff (Harvard) 2,945
15 Paul Caron (Pepperdine) 41,881 15 Darien Shanske (UC-Davis) 2,882
16 Richard Ainsworth (Boston Univ.) 39,257 16 Brad Borden (Brooklyn) 2,850
17 Bridget Crawford (Pace) 38,762 17 Young Ran (Christine) Kim (Cardozo) 2,618
18 Robert Sitkoff (Harvard) 34,044 18 David Weisbach (Chicago) 2,521
19 Brad Borden (Brooklyn) 32,525 19 Jordan Barry (USC) 2,501
20 Jonathan Choi (USC) 32,374 20 Richard Ainsworth (Boston University) 2,301
21 Ruth Mason (Virginia) 31,641 21 John Brooks (Fordham) 2,282
22 Vic Fleischer (UC-Irvine) 30,639 22 Brian Galle (Georgetown) 2,246
23 Ed Kleinbard (USC) 29,981 23 Dan Shaviro (NYU) 2,174
24 Jim Hines (Michigan) 28,912 24 Ellen Aprill (Loyola-L.A.) 2,084
25 Kim Clausing (UCLA) 28,881 25 Lily Batchelder (NYU) 1,983

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February 27, 2024 in Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Prof Rankings | Permalink

NY Times Op-Ed: The Crisis In Teaching Constitutional Law

New York Times Op-Ed:  The Crisis in Teaching Constitutional Law, by Jesse Wegman (New York Times Editorial Board):

Supreme Court (2024)If you attended law school at any time over the past half-century, your course in constitutional law likely followed a well-worn path.

First you learned the basics: the Supreme Court’s power to say what the Constitution means. Then you read and discussed cases that set precedents for different parts of the Constitution — the commerce clause, presidential powers, due process, equal protection and so on. Finally you studied how the court balances individual liberties against the government’s need to act in the public interest.

It was all based on an underlying premise that has long bound together everyone involved in the project of training the next generation of lawyers: The Supreme Court is a legitimate institution of governance, and the nine justices, whatever their political backgrounds, care about getting the law right. They are more interested in upholding fundamental democratic principles and, perhaps most important, preserving the court’s integrity than in imposing a partisan agenda.

The premise no longer holds today.

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February 27, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Monday, February 26, 2024

Hemel: Capital Taxation In The Middle Of History

Daniel J. Hemel (NYU; Google Scholar), Capital Taxation in the Middle of History, 99 N.Y.U. L. Rev. __ (2024):

Nyu-law-reviewOptimal tax theory—the branch of public economics that focuses on the design of welfare-maximizing tax systems—has produced two especially stark results regarding the ideal treatment of capital. First, Anthony Atkinson and Joseph Stiglitz concluded in a seminal 1976 article that the optimal capital tax is zero and that all revenue should be raised from taxes on labor income. Four years later, Stanley Fischer analyzed a model similar to Atkinson and Stiglitz’s and concluded that the welfare-maximizing system would tax only capital—not labor—and would potentially tax capital at a rate as high as 100 percent. 

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February 26, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Legal Ed News Roundup

Winners Of The 23rd Annual Law Student Tax Challenge

ABA Tax Section, Winners Of The 23rd Annual Law Student Tax Challenge:

ABA_Tax_ChampsJ.D. Division 

1st Place: 
Natalie Romano-Nuesch and Victor Ficarra (right)
Temple

2nd Place: 
Emmanuel Backus and Logan Wagner
West Virginia

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February 26, 2024 in ABA Tax Section, Legal Education, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax News, Teaching | Permalink

ABA May Revise Diversity Accreditation Standard To Increase 'Identity Characteristics' From Three (Gender, Race & Ethnicity) To 14

Law.com, ABA Weighing Diversity Standard Revisions in Light of SCOTUS Ruling:

ABA Legal Ed (2023)Under a current proposal, the focus of Standard 206 would shift away from "diversity and inclusion" and toward access for "all persons," expanding number of "identity characteristics" from three—gender, race and ethnicity—to 14.

The American Bar Association has decided to continue mulling over potential revisions to Standard 206, which governs diversity and inclusion within law schools, in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on affirmative action.

Under the proposal recommended by the Standards 205/206 Working Group, amendments to Standard 206 from the ABA Standards Committee on Wednesday, the Council of the ABA’s Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar voted during its Thursday meeting in Louisiana to further consider the revisions at this time.

Under the proposal recommended by the Standards 205/206 Working Group, amendments to Standard 206 would include changing the standard title from “Diversity and Inclusion” to “Access to Legal Education and the Profession,” and shifting the overall focus of the verbiage away from underrepresented groups and more toward providing access to “all persons.”

Proposed “identity characteristics” would include—replacing “gender, race, and ethnicity”—“race, color, ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, disability, military status, Native American tribal citizenship, or socioeconomic background.”

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February 26, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Inside The IRS Unit Taking On America’s Millionaires And Billionaires

International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Inside the IRS Unit Taking on America’s Millionaires and Billionaires:

IRS Logo (2023)A pair of Internal Revenue Service agents are attempting to interview a billionaire they suspect of cheating on his taxes. But across the table from the agents is a formidable entourage of esteemed tax professionals hired to defend the billionaire. They include white-shoe attorneys — each of whom knows more about their own arcane corner of tax law than just about anyone on earth — along with highly specialized accountants and economists.

Neither of the two IRS agents has a law degree. Complex arguments from the billionaire’s entourage fly over their heads. The IRS agents are outmatched by a team whose combined years of experience in tax law and accounting exceed their own by over a century.

This stark example, laid out by former IRS officials in interviews with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, isn’t a hypothetical so much as a glimpse into the agency’s regular challenges in auditing the United States’ highest earners. These battles often come down to experience and expertise. The IRS has been losing, former officials said.

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February 26, 2024 in IRS News, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax News | Permalink

Appalachian Law School Deanship Remains Open After Deputy AG Declines Position; Faculty Bristles At Selection Without Their Input As Required By ABA

Richmond Times Dispatch, The Little Law School That Could:

Appalachian Law School (2024)As Chuck Slemp apparently saw it, you can go home again.

The chief deputy to Attorney General Jason Miyares, Slemp — a Southwest Virginia native from a storied Republican family who’s been a local prosecutor, a general practitioner and an adjunct professor — was recently offered the deanship of the Appalachian School of Law in Grundy. The struggling, 26-year-old private institution produces lawyers for a remote, mountainous region that has long been short on educational and economic opportunity.

But the faculty of the tiny school — it has about 120 students, about a third of ASL’s enrollment when it opened in 1997 — bristled over Slemp’s selection.

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February 26, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Sunday, February 25, 2024

What A Murdered Russian Dissident Can Teach Us About Moral Courage

Russell Moore (Christianity Today Op-Ed), What a Murdered Russian Dissident Can Teach Us About Moral Courage:

Christianity TodayAlexei Navalny was willing to stand alone—knowing he’d never be alone in the bigger story.

Russian president Vladimir Putin murdered another Christian this week. It was just another day in Putin’s supposed project of protecting “the Christian West” from godlessness. After all, they tell me, one can’t create a Christian nationalist empire without killing some people.

Before the world forgets the corpse of Alexei Navalny in the subzero environs of an Arctic penal colony, we ought to look at him—especially those of us who follow Jesus Christ—to see what moral courage actually is. ...

Navalny repeatedly referenced his profession of Christian faith. My Christianity Today colleague Emily Belz discovered a 2021 trial transcript at Meduza, in which Navalny explains, in strikingly biblical terms, what it means to suffer for one’s beliefs.

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February 25, 2024 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Jordan Peterson, God, And Christianity

Religion News Service, Jordan Peterson Wrestles With God:

We Who Wrestle Book CoverIn a new lecture tour to support a forthcoming book, the psychologist and public intellectual hews ever closer to Christianity, tantalizing fans who take their cues on converting from his secular but religiously curious thought.

Jordan Peterson, the controversial Canadian psychologist, bestselling author and champion of manhood, strode back and forth across the stage at the historic Providence Performing Arts Center in early February, matching the theater’s ornate decoration with one of his characteristically flamboyant suits — a color-blocked navy, white and orange number with yellow lining.

As he paced, his speech sometimes resembled an altar call, other times borrowed the intellectual heft of a Catholic college lecture, and at one point offered a secular, pop psychological argument for the existence of God:

Nonbelievers, he told the crowd in Providence, wrestle with God as believers do: when they’re morally outraged at suffering in the world. “That’s an emotional argument,” he said. “And it’s the kind of emotional argument that you would mount against someone that you are in relationship with.”

Peterson was in town to kick off his 51-city “We Who Wrestle With God” tour, in advance of his new book of the same name. The “we” in the tour’s title is the closest the former University of Toronto psychology professor and YouTube star has come to admitting his own belief in the God of the Bible.

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February 25, 2024 in Book Club, Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

NY Times Op-Ed: 'Grace Is A Participation In The Life Of God'

New York Times Op-Ed:  To Deepen Love, Consider Duty, by Valerie Pavilonis:

New York Times Logo (2023)Is [it] a sign of adulthood, to become aware of your own limitations, as well as to welcome someone to witness those limitations? When I was around 13, my grandparents, nearly 90 years old, had reached the point that they could no longer perform some basic functions independently. My mother and father made it their mandate to help them, and I remember quite clearly my father taking my grandfather — his father-in-law — to the bathroom and, in several instances, helping him shower.

As a 13-year-old, I watched this distantly, perhaps too young to register how significant it was, that my dad was not required to help my grandfather, who was not his father, and could have left him to his indignity. But he didn’t. ...

I have tried, for many years, to find words for this phenomenon. Maybe it isn’t even a phenomenon. Maybe I am affected by a cynical bubble of a world where individuals have become so siloed that such kindness can seem indescribable. But it has touched me, and it has changed me, and the word it all comes down to might be deceptively simple: grace.

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February 25, 2024 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Christian Legal Society Law School Fellows Washington, D.C. Program (May 19-25) For 1Ls And 2Ls

CLS Fellows

Designed for first- and second-year law students, the Fellows program is a one-week, all expenses paid opportunity to join Christians from across the country in a formative time of lectures, group discussions, and community building activities in the heart of our nation's capital. Join top instructors and legal practitioners as we delve together into the fraught arenas of Christian jurisprudence, constitutional theory, moral formation, and vocational ministry, while also taking in D.C. attractions (#GoNats), breaking bread at the finest restaurants, and building relationships to better serve God and neighbor on your campus and in your legal profession.

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February 25, 2024 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

The Top Five New Tax Papers

This week's list of the Top 5 Recent Tax Paper Downloads is the same as last week's list.

  1. SSRN Logo (2018)[643 Downloads]  The Myths and Truths of Extraterritorial Taxation, by Laura Snyder (President, Stop Extraterritorial American Taxation (SEAT); Board of Directors, Association of Americans Resident Overseas (AARO))
  2. [335 Downloads]  Pillar 2: QDMTT or Safe Harbour Domestic Minimum Top-Up Tax (SHDMTT)?, by Joachim Englisch (Münster)
  3. [284 Downloads]  No More Tax-Free Lunch for Billionaires: Closing the Borrowing Loophole, by Edward Fox (Michigan; Google Scholar) & Zachary Liscow (Yale; Google Scholar)
  4. [233 Downloads]  Paying for Reparations: How to Capitalize a Multi-Trillion Reparations Fund, by Jeremy Bearer-Friend (George Washington; Google Scholar)
  5. [205 Downloads]  AI and the Future of Tax Avoidance, by Benjamin Alarie (Toronto; Google Scholar)

February 25, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Top 5 Downloads | Permalink

Saturday, February 24, 2024

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Top 10 Taxprof Blog Posts - LinkedinLegal Education: 

  1. Chronicle of Higher Education, Former Penn President Shatters Record For Highest-Paid College President: $22,866,127 
  2. Philadelphia Inquirer, Amy Wax Appeals Sanctions Imposed By Penn Faculty Senate (1-Year Suspension At 50% Pay, Loss Of Chair) 
  3. Inside Higher Ed, Colorado Settles Discrimination And Retaliation Lawsuit By Paying Senior Tenured Law Prof $60,000 Plus $100,000 Attorney's Fees 
  4. Toledo Blade, Toledo Law Students File ABA Complaint Over 4-Week Delay In Disclosing Misgrading Of 85% Of Legal Ethics Exam Grades 
  5. Dan Rodriguez (Northwestern), Reform And Reckoning In 2024 Legal Education 459
  6. David Lat (Bloomberg Law), New ABA Accreditation Standard Is A Step Forward For Free Speech At Law Schools 
  7. LSAC, Impact Of Department Of Education's Delayed Processing Of FAFSA Forms On Law Schools And Applicants 
  8. Tracey E. George (Vanderbilt), Mitu Gulati (Virginia) & Albert Yoon (Toronto), The Gender Makeup Of Newsworthy Deal Teams 
  9. Reuters, ABA Says JD-Next Is Not Yet A 'Valid And Reliable' Predictor Of Grades; Law Schools Need A Variance To Use It 
  10. Andrew Blair-Stanek, Patricia Campbell, Donald G. Gifford, Guha Krishnamurthi, Robert V. Percival, Jeff Sovern, Maureen Sweeney, Donald B. Tobin & Liza Vertinsky (Maryland), GPT Gets Its First Law School B+ Grades

Tax: 

  1. UC-Irvine, Call For Presentations: Symposium On Moore And The Future Of The Realization Doctrine 
  2. Akron Law Review, Call For International Tax Papers 
  3. Natasha Sarin (Yale), Lawrence Summers (Harvard), Fred Goldberg, Jr. (Skadden) & Leslie Samuels (Cleary Gottlieb), Tax Reform Project: Seeking Experts’ Ideas For A Better Tax Code
  4. Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan), Three Tax Papers On SSRN 
  5. Lawrence Zelenak (Duke), The Income Tax, The Constitution, And The Unrealized Importance Of Helvering v. Griffiths 
  6. Bloomberg, T-Bills Without Tax Bills? 'Poster Child For Tax Arbitrage' Or 'Democratization Of Tax Dodges'? 
  7. Benjamin Alarie (Toronto), Generative AI For Tax: Looking Back, Looking Ahead 
  8. SSRN, The Top Five New Tax Papers 
  9. Tannenwald Foundation, 2024 Tax Writing Competition
  10. International Fiscal Association, 2023 IFA International Tax Student Writing Award; Call For Entrants In 2024 Competition 

Faith: 

  1. Alec Wilkinson (New York Times Op-Ed), Finding God Through The Divine Language Of Mathematics 
  2. Washington Post, Catholic Priest And Evangelical Pastor Battle For Souls In Brazil's Deepest Amazon Rainforest
  3. Pepperdine, Third Annual Nootbaar Fellows Workshop And Conference: Charting The Future Of Church And State 
  4. Inside Higher Ed, A Rabbi Walks Into a Christian University 
  5. Allen Guelzo (Wall Street Journal Op-Ed), Abraham Lincoln’s Unchurched Faith 

February 24, 2024 in About This Blog, Faith, Legal Education, Tax, Tax Daily, Weekly Top 10 TaxProf Blog Posts | Permalink

Donna Adelson Feuded With Murder Victim Dan Markel Over Kosher Meals For Her Grandchildren

New York Sun, Wealthy Grandmother Charged in Law Professor’s Murder Was ‘Conductor’ of Dentist Family, Feuded With Murder Victim Over Kosher Meals for Grandkids:

Adelson (Donna Mug Shot 2)Donna Adelson, now in jail awaiting trial for the contract murder of Dan Markel, would feed Markel’s children McDonald’s cheeseburgers, in defiance of Jewish dietary laws, according to Markel’s mother.

Donna Adelson is not one to sit idly by. That’s according to the grieving mother of the late Dan Markel. And it’s likely prosecutors will try to convince a jury of that same narrative when 73-year-old Donna, now sitting in a Florida county jail, heads to trial in September for Dan’s contract killing. ...

Donna is in the hot seat after being charged, almost ten years later, of conspiring with Charlie and others to kill Dan. ... When it’s her time to stand trial on September 30, prosecutors will aim to convince a jury that Donna was motivated to seek Dan’s demise because of her desire for control over her family and animosity towards Dan.

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February 24, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Soled: The Gift Tax And The Tax Gap

Jay A. Soled (Rutgers; Google Scholar), The Gift Tax and the Tax Gap, 182 Tax Notes Fed. 1047 (Feb. 5, 2024):

Tax Notes Federal (2022)There is ample evidence that the nation’s gift tax revenue is ravaged by taxpayer noncompliance, thereby enlarging the overall federal tax gap. In a nutshell, taxpayers often make gifts that exceed the gift tax annual exclusion, yet they fail to report this information to the IRS, and the agency lacks the resources and ability to identify those derelictions. The result is that the nation’s coffers suffer.

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February 24, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Analysts, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Friday, February 23, 2024

Weekly SSRN Tax Article Review And Roundup: Saito Reviews Dagan’s Tax and Globalization: Toward a New Social Contract

This week, Blaine Saito (Ohio State; Google Scholar) reviews a new work by Tsilly Dagan (Oxford; Google Scholar), Tax and Globalization: Toward a New Social Contract

Blaine saito

Political theory has often struggled in trying to determine what justice requires across the borders of nation-states. In her piece Tax and Globalization: Toward a New Social Contract, Tsilly Dagan addresses these thorny issues in the context of taxation. In doing so, she shows that one of the great difficulties that tax, and indeed all areas of law, face under globalization, is to ensure that people’s liberties to leave political communities are balanced carefully with the needs of justice for those who are not so mobile. In doing so, she provides a framework for us to think about what justice and social contract theories demand in a globalized world.

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February 23, 2024 in Blaine Saito, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Weekly SSRN Roundup, Weekly Tax Roundup | Permalink

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

Tax Policy In The Biden Administration

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - linkedinTuesday, February 27: Karen B. Brown (George Washington) will present A Survey and Critique of International Tax Governance Reform as part of the Georgetown Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Emily Satterthwaite and Dayanand Manoli

Wednesday, February 28: Conor Clarke (Washington University; Google Scholar) will present Income Inequality and the Corporate Sector (with Wojciech Kopczuk (Columbia; Google Scholar)) as part of the Northwestern Advanced Topics in Taxation Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Ari Glogower

Wednesday, February 28: Ajay K. Mehrotra (Northwestern; Google Scholar) will present Nixon’s VAT: Lawyers, Economists, and the Rise and Fall of the 1970s National Value-Added Tax to Fund Education as part of the Toronto James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Ben Alarie

Thursday, February 29: Heather Field (UC-San Francisco; Google Scholar) will present Tax Enforcement by the Private Sector: Deputizing Tax Insurers, 99 Ind. L. J. ___ (2024), as part of the Duke Tax Policy Seminar. If you would like to attend, please contact Larry Zelenak

Thursday, February 29: Daniel Schaffa (Richmond; Google Scholar) will present The Regressivity of Complexity as part of the UCLA Colloquium on Tax Policy and Public Finance. If you would like to attend, please contact Kirk Stark and Jason Oh

Friday, March 1: Alex Zhang (Emory; Google Scholar) will present Fiscal Citizenship and Taxpayer Privacy as part of the Indiana Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Leandra Lederman

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February 23, 2024 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

ABA Says JD-Next Is Not Yet A 'Valid And Reliable' Predictor Of Grades; Law Schools Need A Variance To Use It

Reuters, ABA Says Law Schools Still Need Approval for Alternative Admissions Program:

ABA Legal Ed (2023)The American Bar Association on Thursday declined to grant full approval to JD-Next, rejecting a proposal to put the alternative law school admissions program on par with the LSAT and the GRE.

The ABA's Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar instead approved a recommendation from its standards committee that the JD-Next program should not yet be deemed a "valid and reliable" predictor of an applicant's law school grades.

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February 23, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

T-Bills Without Tax Bills? 'Poster Child For Tax Arbitrage' Or 'Democratization Of Tax Dodges'?

Bloomberg, T-Bills Without Tax Bills? This Fund Says It Cracked the Code:

BoxxA Marine Corps veteran with a finance Ph.D. has come up with a new way to avoid taxes.

Any American holding US government securities has to pay income taxes on the interest they generate. For the richest investors, the Internal Revenue Service’s cut is 37%.

But a year-old investment fund offers returns that closely track short-term Treasuries, with starkly lower tax bills. The fund, Alpha Architect 1-3 Month Box ETF, uses a complex options strategy and a longstanding tax loophole that favors exchange-traded funds.

“We spent seven years figuring out how to do this,” said Wesley Gray, the ex-Marine and chief executive officer of Alpha Architect. “My job is just to deliver all the value I possibly can to my shareholders, within the law.”

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February 23, 2024 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Mansour Presents Building Tax Capacity In Developing Countries Today At UCLA

Mario Mansour (IMF) presents Building Tax Capacity in Developing Countries (with Juan Carlos Benitez (IMF; Google Scholar), Miguel Pecho (IMF) & Charles Vellutini (IMF; Google Scholar)) at UCLA today as part of its Colloquium on Tax Policy and Public Finance hosted by Kirk Stark and Jason Oh: 

Mario mansourTax capacity—the policy, institutional, and technical capabilities to collect tax revenue—is part of a deeper process of state building that is essential for achieving the sustainable development goals. This Staff Discussion Note shows that developing countries have made some progress in revenue mobilization during the past decades, but that much more is needed. It finds that a staggering 9 percentage-point increase in the tax- to-GDP ratio is feasible through a combination of tax system reform and institutional capacity building. Achieving this calls for a holistic and institution-based approach that focuses on improving policy, administration, and legal implementation of core taxes. The note offers practical lessons and guidance, based on IMF capacity-building experience in this area.

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February 22, 2024 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

2024 Tannenwald Tax Writing Competition

Tannenwald tax scholarshipThe Theodore Tannenwald, Jr. Foundation for Excellence in Tax Scholarship and American College of Tax Counsel are sponsoring the 2024 Tannenwald Writing Competition.

Named for the late Tax Court Judge Theodore Tannenwald, Jr., and designed to perpetuate his dedication to legal scholarship of the highest quality, the Tannenwald Writing Competition is open to all full- or part-time law school students, undergraduate or graduate.  Papers on any federal or state tax-related topic may be submitted in accordance with the Competition Rules.

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February 22, 2024 in Legal Education, Tax, Tax Daily, Teaching | Permalink

Thomas: Tax And The Myth Of The Family Farm

Kathleen DeLaney Thomas (North Carolina; Google Scholar), Tax and the Myth of the Family Farm, 110 Iowa L. Rev. __ (2024):

Iowa law reviewWith income and wealth inequality at historically high levels, policymakers have looked to the tax system as a potential road to reform. Specifically, new taxes on wealth or inheritances could raise much needed revenue and reduce intergenerational wealth disparities. Yet looming behind recent proposals to strengthen the progressivity of the tax system is the specter of taxing family farms out of existence. 

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February 22, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Rodriguez: Reform And Reckoning In 2024 Legal Education

Dan Rodriguez (Northwestern; Google Scholar), Passing the Batons: Reform and Reckoning in 2024 Legal Education:

To say we are experiencing "a moment" risks cliche.  But as to the potential for reform in the legal education space, there may in fact be a moment, for two colliding reasons:  First, the problems that have long plagued legal education are not fundamentally abating, and, indeed, some are worsening. ... Problems need to be solved for the betterment of our enterprise, of our profession.  Second, it just so happens that there is a very large turnover in leadership at the organizations that have long been the primary regulators and engines of influence.  To name names, Bill Adams will step down as ABA Legal Ed Section managing director at the end of this academic year, and will be replaced by Dean Jennifer Rosato Perea.  Kellye Testy will leave LSAC to become the next executive director of the AALS.  Kellye will be replaced, although I have no idea at all about the identity of her replacement.  One other interesting fact along these same lines:  The incoming chair of the ABA Legal Ed council is a well-known maverick and fearless innovator, Bridget McCormack, the former chief justice of the Michigan Supreme Court.  And so we are at one of those rare moments where new leadership might steer this big, bulky legal ed ship in a new direction.

I intend this as not merely a gesture of hope, but one of urgency and imperative.  Among the issues that call for close attention and action from these able new leaders:

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February 22, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Generative AI For Tax: Looking Back, Looking Ahead

Benjamin Alarie (Osler Chair in Business Law, University of Toronto; CEO, Blue J Legal),), Generative AI for Tax: Looking Back, Looking Ahead, 182 Tax Notes Fed. 1069 (Feb. 5, 2024):

Tax Notes Federal (2022)This article canvases the highlights of what has been going on with generative AI over this past year. It outlines the main developments ushered in by the large technology players for the development and commercialization of AI in 2023 and then, more importantly for the purposes of tax professionals, offers a quick rundown of some of the principal developments in the world of tax law specifically for generative AI in 2023, particularly regarding tax analysis. It then forecasts what lies ahead for generative AI in tax in 2024.

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February 22, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Analysts, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

U.S. Tax Court's Tax Trailblazers: Alice Thomas

U.S. Tax Court's Diversity & Inclusion Series, Tax Trailblazers: Mentoring the Next Generation (registration):

Alice thomasPlease join the United States Tax Court as its Tax Trailblazers series continues with Howard Law Professor Alice Thomas, today at 7:00 - 8:15 PM EST (register here). 

Professor Alice Martin Thomas is a tenured associate professor of law at Howard University School of Law where she heads the tax program and teaches federal tax, contracts, and commercial law subjects. She is an inaugural member of the Loretta Argrett ABA Tax Fellowship. She also is a Carnegie Scholar with the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning and the former Interim Director of the Howard University Center for Excellence in Teaching, Learning, and Assessment.

Professor Thomas attended Washington University in St. Louis, earning a Double Major in Psychology and Black Studies, and a Minor in Biology.

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February 22, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax News | Permalink

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Call For Presentations: UC-Irvine Symposium On Moore And The Future Of The Realization Doctrine

Call for Presentations: The Moore Case and the Future of the Realization Doctrine:

UCI Law (2022)The Graduate Tax Program at the University of California, Irvine School of Law will host its 6th Annual UCI Law - Taylor Nelson Amitrano LLP Tax Symposium on April 18, 2024. The theme this year is The Moore Case and the Future of the Realization Doctrine.

We are interested in submissions for proposed presentations on potential effects of the Moore case on the realization doctrine, as well as any topics relating to the realization doctrine as they pertain to issues such as constitutional design, legal alternatives, behavioral effects, societal effects and disparities, tax planning, and political discourse.

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February 21, 2024 in Conferences, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Conferences, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Drexel Seeks To Hire A Tax VAP

Drexel University Kline School of Law, Visiting Assistant Professor

Drexel lawThe Drexel University Kline School of Law invites applications for two full-time teaching professor or Visiting Assistant Professor positions in our JD program, plus one full-time teaching professor in our unique BA in Law program, all to begin in the summer or fall of 2024.  We seek candidates who hold a JD and/or a PhD (or appropriate equivalent) and have a demonstrated commitment to excellent teaching. The JD program has needs in the areas of legal methods (research, writing, and analysis), tax law, evidence, and criminal procedure, among other areas. The BA program seeks candidates with a focus on the intersection of law and the social sciences. The law school is open to candidates with an interest in teaching across the JD and BA programs. ...

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February 21, 2024 in Fellowships & VAPs, Legal Education, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Prof Jobs | Permalink

Brunson: A New Johnson Amendment—Subsidy, Core Political Speech, And Tax-Exempt Organizations

Samuel D. Brunson (Loyola-Chicago; Google Scholar), A New Johnson Amendment: Subsidy, Core Political Speech, and Tax-Exempt Organizations:

Seven decades ago, Congress enacted the so-called Johnson Amendment. This provision of tax law forbids tax-exempt public charities from endorsing or opposing candidates for office. Under the plain language of the tax law, an organization that violates the Johnson Amendment does not qualify as tax-exempt.

The legislative history underlying the Johnson Amendment is sparse, and it provides few clues as to Congress’s reason for enacting it. In the ensuing years, though, it has become clear that Congress does not want to subsidize campaigning activities, and this has become the most convincing justification for the Johnson Amendment. However, the design of the current Johnson Amendment goes further than merely refusing to subsidize: it entirely prevents public charities from engaging in campaigning speech.

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February 21, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Amy Wax Appeals Sanctions Imposed By Penn Faculty Senate (1-Year Suspension At 50% Pay, Loss Of Chair)

UpdateRobert George (Princeton): "Why would Penn continue to prosecute law professor Amy Wax for speech crimes after the congressional hearings revealed the University's hypocrisy and double standards when it comes to freedom of speech on campus?"

Following up on my previous posts (links below):  Philadelphia Inquirer, Penn Hearing Board Recommended Sanctions Against Amy Wax in June, but Her Appeal Means the Process Isn’t Over:

Wax (2023)The case against controversial University of Pennsylvania law professor Amy Wax — who has called into question the academic ability of Black students and said the country would be better off with fewer Asians and less Asian immigration — has gone on for over two years with no public outcome.

But sources close to the investigation confirmed a university hearing board made up of tenured faculty recommended in June that Wax should face sanctions, including a one-year suspension at half pay with benefits intact, but stopped short of calling for her to be fired and stripped of tenure.

The hearing board also recommended: a public reprimand issued by university leadership, the loss of her named chair and summer pay, and a requirement to note in her public appearances that she is not speaking for or as a member of the Penn Carey Law school or Penn, according to the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak on the matter. ...

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February 21, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Sarin, Summers, Goldberg & Samuels: Tax Reform Project — Seeking Experts’ Ideas For A Better Tax Code

Natasha Sarin (Yale), Lawrence Summers (Harvard), Fred Goldberg, Jr. (Skadden) & Leslie B. Samuels (Cleary Gottlieb), Tax Reform Project: Seeking Experts’ Ideas for a Better Tax Code, 182 Tax Notes Fed. 1027 (Feb. 5, 2024): 

Tax Reform ProjectIn this article, the authors announce the Tax Reform Project and invite tax experts to submit their ideas for improving the tax system to the project’s website for inclusion in a “practitioners’ green book” that will aid the development of tax policy in Washington. ...

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February 21, 2024 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Analysts, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

ABA Council To Vote On Including JD-Next With LSAT And GRE As Approved Tests For Law School Admissions

Following up on my previous post, ABA Consultant: JD-Next Is Reliable Predictor Of Law School Performance And Can Be Used In Lieu Of LSAT/GRE:  Reuters, Law School Admissions Program JD-Next Seeks ABA's Blessing:

Aspen-jd-nextAlternative law school admissions program JD-Next could soon join the LSAT and the GRE in gaining the American Bar Association’s stamp of approval.

The ABA’s Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar is slated Thursday to consider a request by JD-Next’s operator to deem the program a “valid and reliable” predictor of an applicant’s law school grades—a designation that would enable law school admissions offices to use it without special ABA permission, as they do with both the LSAT and GRE.

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February 21, 2024 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink