Saturday, June 26, 2004
Jim Maule (Villanova) undoubtedly has one of the most eclectic backgrounds among the tax professorate. Although many tax scholars produce major work for both the professional and academic communities, Professor Maule’s wide-ranging interests and experiences set him apart in many ways.
Professor Maule is a Pennsylvania product (Penn B.S. 1973, Villanova J.D. 1976) who, like many young tax lawyers, left for Washington, D.C. for a few years (Attorney Advisor in Office of Chief Counsel, Clerk for Tax Court Judge Chabot, tax LL.M. from George Washington) before returning to Pennsylvania as a tax academic, first at Penn State-Dickinson then at Villanova, where he has taught since 1983.
Six months short of a quarter-century in this business, Professor Maule has carved out a unique niche in several areas. He is perhaps best known as the author of over a dozen BNA Tax Portfolios, including:
• 501-2 T.M., Gross Income: Overview and Conceptual Aspects
• 502-2 T.M., Gross Income: Tax Benefit, Claim of Right, and Assignment of Income
• 503-2 T.M., Deductions: Overview and Conceptual Aspects
• 504-2 T.M., Deduction Limitations: In General
• 505-2 T.M., Trade or Business Expenses and For-Profit Activity Deductions
• 506-2 T.M., Tax Credits: Concepts and Calculations
• 507-2 T.M., Income Tax Liability: Concepts and Calculations
• 525-2 T.M., State and Local Taxes
• 531-2 T.M., The Accelerated Cost Recovery System (ACRS)
• 560 T.M., Income Tax Basis: Overview and Conceptual Basis
• 590-2 T.M., Taxation of Real Estate Transactions: An Overview
• 597 T.M., Tax Incentives for Law-Income Areas
• 1510 T.M., State Taxation of S Corporations
Professor Maule received the 1993 BNA Tax Management Distinguished Author Award in recognition of this work and the many chapters in the digital Tax Practice Series that he has written. He publishes other work for the practitioner community through the many leadership roles he has held in the ABA Tax Section, including most recently as Editor of the Recent Developments in Partnership Tax report published annually by The Tax Lawyer. His participation in the ABA-TAX listserv is frequent and according to Jim, "the practitioners think they’re getting the better end of the deal, but they’re not, because I continue to learn about what’s happening in the practice world by paying attention to the questions and arguments that fill the list emails."
Professor Maule also is an important voice in tax academic circles, with several major works, including:
• IRS Hot Asset Reg Re-Tuning Falls Flat, Causing Pain for Partner Estates, 94 Tax Notes 751 (2002)
• Instant Replay, Weak Teams, and Bad Calls: An Empirical Study of Aleged Tax Court Bias, 66 U. Tenn. L. Rev. 351 (1999)
• Tax and Marriage: Unhitching the Horse and Carriage, 67 Tax Notes 539 (1995)
• Getting Hamr’d: Highest Applicable Marginal Rates That Nail Unsuspecting Taxpayers, 53 Tax Notes 1423 (1991)
His puns infect his writing as much as they do his teaching and everyday conversation, and he invites readers to try finding as many as they can in his articles. He says it’s genetic, and so perhaps being a tax academic was inevitable.
When asked by his high school classmates how he ended up in the tax world after putting his efforts into science and languages, Jim describes a transition from an interest in the science of business that took him to Penn to a fascination with the pervasiveness of tax that he encountered working at an accounting firm while at Wharton. "I continue to marvel," he says, "at the depth to which the tentacles of the income tax reach into almost every aspect of our lives. When I came to understand that Congress directs, or tries to direct, the nation through the tax laws, I decided that on a consistent long-term basis there would be much more happening in that area than in any other. When I look at tax, I sometimes think of the adage ‘Know thy enemy.’ I have a lot of compassion for people who don’t understand what’s going on in the tax world, who overpay taxes, who make mistakes running their lives and their businesses, and who struggle with compliance." He is a strong advocate of tax simplification and reform, and a very demanding law professor. "My goal in teaching is to prepare students for service to their clients, so I try to put students into the situations in which they will find themselves after they graduate. The most rewarding part of teaching, for me, is the phone call or email from a former student who thanks me for pushing them as I did because they found practice to be as I predicted it would be."
Professor Maule’s has immersed himself in tax law, genealogy, and technology. He has published several books and articles about the Maule family (including Better That 100 Witches Should Live: The 1696 Acquittal of Thomas Maule of Salem, Massachusetts, on Charges of Seditious Libel and Its Impact on the Development of First Amendment Freedoms). He has written several dozen computer programs, most related to tax and genealogy. He is the owner or co-owner of two small businesses in these areas:
• JEMBook Publishing Company, which publishes law and genealogy books
• TaxJEM Inc., which develops computer-assisted tax law instruction programs primarily for use by students
Professor Maule is a frequent speaker on the tax lecture circuit, appearing before tax practitioner and academic audiences. He has been quoted in legal and general circulation newspapers. It’s no surprise that his blog, dedicated principally to tax issues, carries the name of Mauled Again
Professor Maule is the father of two grown children. His daughter Sarah Margaret belongs to the "artist in the family" branch and his son Charles Edward, currently studying in Harbin, China, has his eyes set on an academic career that blends law, history, and East Asian studies.
Each Saturday, TaxProf Blog shines the spotlight on one of the 700+ tax professors in America's law schools. We hope to help bring the many individual stories of scholarly achievements, teaching innovations, public service, and career moves within the tax professorate to the attention of the broader tax community. Please email me suggestions for future Tax Prof Profiles. For prior Tax Prof Profiles, see here.
June 26, 2004 in Tax Prof Spotlight | Permalink
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