Paul L. Caron
Dean




Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Devereux Presents Business Location Decisions With A Global Minimum Tax And Pillar 2 Today At Toronto

Michael Devereux (Oxford) presents Business Location Decisions With A Global Minimum Tax (with Francois Bares (Wisconsin) & Irem Guceri (Oxford; Google Scholar)) and Pillar 2: Rule Order, Incentives, and Tax Competition (with John Vella (Oxford) & Heydon Wardell-Burrus (Oxford)) at Toronto today as part of its James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop:

Devereux (2021)

Business Location Decisions With A Global Minimum Tax
In an historic agreement in 2021, 141 countries agreed on imposing a global minimum tax (GMT) on the profits of multinational corporations. Proponents of the GMT argue that the measure will reduce the distortion to businesses location decisions by reducing the dispersion in tax rates internationally. We investigate the impact of the GMT on business location and investment decisions. To do this, we develop a location choice model based on effective average tax rates (EATRs) augmented with incentives for profit-shifting to low-tax jurisdictions. GMT affects the dispersion of EATRs for new investment in different countries, but its impact is nonmonotonic in the threshold rate. For low values of the GMT threshold, the introduction of a minimum tax increases EATRs more in high-tax countries relative to low tax countries, increasing the dispersion of EATRs. As the statutory minimum rate increases, more low-tax countries begin to set their tax rate at the threshold, reducing the dispersion. An increased threshold has heterogeneous cost of capital effects for different countries; we find that a high threshold rate may substantially depress capital accumulation in investment hubs. This analysis provides a novel contribution to the literature on the relationship between taxation and corporate decisions on real activity.

Pillar 2: Rule Order, Incentives, and Tax Competition
Two of the most controversial questions relating to Pillar 2 are the extent to which it will allow countries to engage in tax competition, and which countries will collect the tax revenues it generates. The Model Rules published by the OECD/G20 Inclusive Framework on 20 December 2021 provide somewhat unexpected answers to both questions.

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January 26, 2022 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Mazur Presents Can Blockchain Revolutionize Tax Administration? Today At San Diego

Orly Mazur (SMU; Google Scholar) presents Can Blockchain Revolutionize Tax Administration? (reviewed by Sloan Speck (Colorado; Google Scholar) here) at San Diego today as part of its Tax Law Speaker Series hosted by Miranda Fleischer:

Mazur-OrlyExperts predict that the use of smart contracts and other applications of blockchain technology can potentially revolutionize the manner in which we do business. Blockchain promises the elimination of middlemen, as well as trust, transparency, and improved access to shared information and records. Thus, it is no surprise that companies and entrepreneurs are now developing blockchain solutions for an array of markets, ranging from real estate to health care. But, can this new technology revolutionize tax administration? Our current tax administration system suffers from a large tax gap, high compliance and administrative costs, and many inefficiencies. Blockchain’s core attributes may present a solution to these shortcomings.

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January 25, 2022 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Monday, January 24, 2022

Dagan Presents Unbundled Tax Sovereignty: Refining The Challenges Today At Brooklyn

Tsilly Dagan (Oxford; Google Scholar) presents Unbundled Tax Sovereignty: Refining the Challenges at Brooklyn today as part of its Colloquium on International Economic Law hosted by Steven Dean and Julian Arato:

Tsilly_ibfdTax sovereignty under globalization is at risk of unraveling. Not only–as is often argued — because international organizations or other states exert external power on sovereign states. Instead, it is the process of fragmentation of state sovereignty that undermines its own foundations. My main claim is that globalization increasingly alters the interaction between states and their constituents. Globalization, and the choices and flexibility it offers (some) taxpayers, threatens to transform taxpayers from members in a political community into consumers of public goods and services. Such transition, I argue, undermines the basis for state's coercive power. Importantly, this transformation does not affect all individuals in the same way. It varies between taxpayers, between different stages of their lives as well as among different aspects of their lives. Hence, in reality, taxpayers' interactions with the state create a mosaic of differing shades and patterns of consumer-member combinations. This diversity has many virtues, but it also entails serious pitfalls, which is why I argue that — in order to ensure social contracts' continued legitimacy — states should re-configure their social contracts with their constituents to accommodate these trade-offs.

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January 24, 2022 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, January 21, 2022

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - twitter

Monday, January 24: Tsilly Dagan (Oxford; Google Scholar) will present Unbundled Tax Sovereignty: Refining the Challenges as part of the Brooklyn Colloquium on International Economic Law. If you would like to attend, please email Steven Dean.

Tuesday, January 25: Orly Mazur (SMU; Google Scholar) will present Can Blockchain Revolutionize Tax Administration? (reviewed by Sloan Speck (Colorado; Google Scholar)) here) as part of the San Diego Tax Law Speaker Series. If you would like to attend, please register here.

Wednesday, January 26: Michael Devereux (Oxford) will present Pillar 2: Rule Order, Incentives, and Tax Competition (with John Vella (Oxford) & Heydon Wardell-Burrus (Oxford)) and Business Location Decisions With A Global Minimum Tax (with Francois Bares (Wisconsin) & Irem Guceri (Oxford; Google Scholar) as part of the Toronto James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Robert Lines.

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January 21, 2022 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Thursday, January 20, 2022

Kofler Presents The Shielding Effect of European Tax Directives Today At The OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks

Georg Kofler (Vienna; Google Scholar) presents The Shielding Effect of European Tax Directives today as part of the OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks Series (OMG = Oxford-Michigan-MIT-Munich-Georgetown):

OMG

January 20, 2022 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Fox Presents The Psychology Of Taxing Capital Income Today At Toronto

Ed Fox (Michigan; Google Scholar) presents The Psychology of Taxing Capital Income: Evidence from a Survey Experiment on the Realization Rule (with Zachary Liscow (Yale; Google Scholar)) (reviewed by David Elkins (Netanya) here) at Toronto today as part of its James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop Series:

Fox_EdHow to tax capital income is a critical issue today. The realization rule—requiring that property usually must be sold before gains are taxed—is central to taxing capital income, but often decreases the efficiency, equity, and simplicity of the tax system. Estimates suggest that the realization rule costs the government over $2 trillion over 10 years. Given these problems, it is unclear why the rule exists for assets that are easy to value and sell. Scholars have long speculated about the role of the public’s views here, but little is known empirically about them. We conduct the first survey experiment to understand the psychology of the realization rule, which has broad implications for the taxation of capital income.

We have three main findings. First, respondents strongly prefer to wait to tax gains on stocks until sale: 75% to 25%. This pattern persists across a variety of other assets and policy framings: indeed, nearly half of those without stock prefer raising everyone’s taxes (including their own) to taxing unsold stock gains. But the flip side is that there is surprisingly strong support for taxing gains on assets at sale or transfer, including at death, in areas where current law never taxes those gains.

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January 19, 2022 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, January 14, 2022

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - twitterWednesday, January 19: Ed Fox (Michigan; Google Scholar) will present The Psychology of Taxing Capital Income: Evidence from a Survey Experiment on the Realization Rule (with Zachary Liscow (Yale; Google Scholar)) as part of the Toronto James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop Series. If you would like to attend, please contact Robert Lines

Thursday, January 20: Georg Kofler (Vienna; Google Scholar) will present The Shielding Effect of EU Secondary Law as part of the OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks. This event does not require registration.

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January 14, 2022 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

De Cogan Presents The Unaccountability Of Tax Devolution: A Case Study Of Business Rates Today At Toronto

Dominic De Cogan (Cambridge) presents The Unaccountability of Tax Devolution: A Case Study of Business Rates (with Penelope Tuck (University of Birmingham; Google Scholar)) at Toronto today as part of its James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop Series:

DominicdecoganThis article was published in [2022] Public Law 38. It examines the accountability arguments for business rates devolution and shows them to be weak. They are undermined by the economic incoherence of the tax, the complexity of devolved powers and a lack of transparency around the use of powers. These problems resonate with a widely held belief that business rates ought to be repealed and replaced with a more carefully designed tax, especially in response to the pressures placed on the system by COVID-19. We are not hostile to these ideas but doubt the likelihood of rapid implementation, and therefore focus on the existing system, paying special regard to the COVID reliefs of 2020 and 2021. We suggest incremental improvements that could reinforce the accountability justifications for devolution; these might be useful even in the event that radical reforms are enacted.

A key justification for tax devolution is that it enhances sub-central accountability.  The meaning of ‘accountability’ in this context is not always clear, but it seems to embody two linked claims. 

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January 12, 2022 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, January 7, 2022

Next Week’s Tax Workshop

Next Week's Tax Workshops - twitterWednesday, January 12: Dominic De Cogan (Cambridge) will present The Unaccountability of Tax Devolution: A Case Study of Business Rates as part of the Toronto James Hausman Tax Law and Policy Workshop Series. If you would like to attend, please contact Robert Lines.

For individual tax workshop posts, see here.

January 7, 2022 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Elkins Presents A Scalar Conception Of Tax Residence Today At Hebrew University

David Elkins (Netanya, visiting NYU 2021-2022; Google Scholar) presents A Scalar Conception Of Tax Residence For Individuals, 41 Va. Tax Rev. ___ (2021), at Hebrew University Faculty of Law today as part of its Colloquium on Tax Policy:

Elkins (2018)Residence is one of the fundamental concepts in international taxation. As a rule, residents are taxed on their worldwide income while nonresidents are taxed only on their domestic-source income. The criteria for residence vary from country to country. Some countries look to physical presence. Other rely upon more obtuse concepts such as domicile, permanent home, ordinary residence, habitual abode, connections, or ties. Many countries use a variety of tests. Tax treaties typically employ a series of tie-breaking provisions to determine residency when each of the two signatories views an individual as a resident in accordance with its own domestic rules.

Despite the wide variety of tests for determining individual residence, all share a common underlying premise, namely that residence is a binary attribute. An individual either is or is not a resident. There are no shades of grey. An individual who barely satisfies the relevant test is classified as a resident, while an individual who just fails to do so is classified as a nonresident.

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December 21, 2021 in Colloquia, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Lester Presents Foreign Aid Through Domestic Tax Cuts Today At The OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks

Rebecca Lester (Stanford; Google Scholar) presents Foreign Aid through Domestic Tax Cuts? Evidence from Multinational Firm Presence in Developing Countries (with Jeffrey Hoopes (North Carolina; Google Scholar), Marcel Olbert (London Business School; Google Scholar) & Daniel Klein (Mannheim)) today as part of the OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks Series (OMG = Oxford-Michigan-MIT-Munich-Georgetown):

Rebecca-lesterThis paper studies whether corporate tax cuts in developed countries affect economies in the developing world. We focus on one of the most prominent fiscal policies – the corporate income tax regime – and study a major U.K. tax cut as an exogenous shock to foreign investment in Africa. Difference-in-differences estimates show that multinational U.K. firms increase their subsidiary presence in sub-Saharan Africa by 17-24 percent following the 2010 announcement of U.K. tax rate reductions. Exploiting location-specific nighttime luminosity data as well as local data from the African Demographic and Health Surveys, we also document increased economic activity and higher employment rates of African citizens within close proximity (10 kilometers) of local U.K.-owned subsidiaries. Our findings imply that, beyond the goal of motivating home country investment, developed countries’ corporate tax cuts have economic impact in developing nations.

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December 16, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, December 10, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshop

Next Week's Tax Workshops - twitterThursday, December 16: Rebecca Lester (Stanford; Google Scholar) will present Foreign Aid through Domestic Tax Cuts? Evidence from Multinational Firm Presence in Developing Countries (with Jeffrey Hoopes (North Carolina; Google Scholar), Marcel Olbert (London Business School; Google Scholar) & Daniel Klein (Mannheim)) as part of the OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks. This event does not require registration.

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December 10, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Monday, December 6, 2021

Leviner Presents International Taxation: Contemporary Challenges And Trajectories Today At Hebrew University

Sagit Leviner (Ono Academic College; Google Scholar) presents International Taxation: Contemporary Challenges & Trajectories, Analytical Report to The Bank of Israel (with Yehuda Porath (Bank of Israel)) at Hebrew University today as part of its Faculty of Law Tax Law Forum hosted by David Gliksberg:

LevinerThe existing rules of taxation and the international division of taxing powers and jurisdiction originated more than a hundred years ago. This was when physical boundaries and the nation-state played a prominent geopolitical role, most trade was in physical goods, global value chains were fairly compact and unsophisticated, and trade made a relatively modest contribution to world GDP. While the global economy has drastically evolved over the past century, the international tax architecture, to this date, echoes its origins and determines the allocation of the tax base largely by reference to the geopolitical affiliation of the taxpayer and their source of income.

The existing rules of taxation and the international division of taxing powers and jurisdiction originated more than a hundred years ago. This was when physical boundaries and the nation-state played a prominent geopolitical role, most trade was in physical goods, global value chains were fairly compact and unsophisticated, and trade made a relatively modest contribution to world GDP. While the global economy has drastically evolved over the past century, the international tax architecture, to this date, echoes its origins and determines the allocation of the tax base largely by reference to the geopolitical affiliation of the taxpayer and their source of income.

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December 6, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Fleischer Presents Tax Policy — Legislative Updates Today At UC-Irvine

Victor Fleischer (UC-Irvine; Google Scholar) presents Tax Policy - Legislative Updates at UC-Irvine today:

UCI Logo (2018)Professor Fleischer will provide an overview of the tax legislation currently under consideration on Capitol Hill, including important changes to individual tax, capital gains, carried interest, corporate tax, and international tax provisions. He will also discuss developments at the OECD and the interaction between the OECD process and U.S. domestic legislation.

December 1, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Auerbach Presents Tax Policy Design With Low Interest Rates Today At NYU

Alan Auerbach (UC-Berkeley; Google Scholar) presents Tax Policy Design with Low Interest Rates at NYU today as part of its Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium hosted by Daniel Shaviro:

Alan-auerbachInterest rates on government debt have fallen in many countries over the last several decades, with markets indicating that rates may stay low well into the future. It is by now well understood that sustained low interest rates can change the nature of long-run fiscal policy choices. In this paper, we examine a related issue: the implications of sustained low interest rates for the structure of tax policy. We show that low interest rates (a) reduce the differences between consumption and income taxes; (b) make wealth taxes less efficient relative to capital income taxes, at given rates of tax; (c) reduce the value of firm-level investment incentives, and (d) substantially raise the valuation of benefits of carbon abatement policies relative to their costs.

Conclusion
It is by now generally recognized that the presence of low interest rates – sustained over time and across countries – has important implications for the fiscal stance of the federal government. In this paper, we argue that if low interest rates are expected to persist, there are important implications for the design of tax policy as well.

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November 30, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Dean & Brakman Reiser Present For-Profit Philanthropy Today At Georgetown

Steven Dean (Brooklyn) & Dana Brakman Reiser (Brooklyn; Google Scholar) present For-Profit Philanthropy: Constraining Elite Power in Limited Liability Companies, Donor-Advised Funds and Strategic Corporate Giving (Oxford University Press 2022) at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop hosted by Brian Galle:

Dean-brakmanreiserConclusion
In response to revelations that more than 100 extremely wealthy taxpayers paid no income tax at all (without breaking a single rule) the Tax Reform Act of 1969 created the alternative minimum tax. More than half a century later, the country seems genuinely surprised to find that while they may have traded yachts for spacecraft, the wealthiest Americans still often pay not even one dollar of tax. As was true decades ago, they need not break—or even bend—any laws to do so.

Perhaps doubting its wherewithal to directly turn private wealth into public resources through taxation, the 1969 tax reform also attempted to tame elite power with a strategic Grand Bargain. And for a time, it seemed to have succeeded. Its private foundation regime demanded accountability and a golden age of philanthropy unfolded. Extraordinary public benefits flowed from a partnership between the wealthiest Americans and the most vulnerable.

While other legislative bulwarks of the 1960s have been sunk by devastating broadsides, the Grand Bargain’s slow death has been one of a thousand small cuts. The Supreme Court eviscerated the 1965 Voting Rights Act’s protections against discrimination, dismissing its worries about the disenfranchisement of voters as “based on 40-year-old facts having no logical relationship to the present day.” The unsettling consequences of the Supreme Court’s failure to anticipate a new wave of voting limits have come to dominate our nation’s political discourse.

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November 30, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, November 26, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax WorkshopsTuesday, November 30: Steven Dean (Brooklyn) & Dana Brakman Reiser (Brooklyn; Google Scholar) will present For-Profit Philanthropy as part of the Georgetown Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Brian Galle.

Tuesday, November 30: Alan Auerbach (UC-Berkeley; Google Scholar) will present Tax Policy Design With Low Interest Rates as part of the NYU Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Daniel Shaviro

Wednesday, December 1: Victor Fleischer (UC-Irvine; Google Scholar) will present Tax Policy - Legislative Updates on behalf of the UC-Irvine Graduate Tax Program. If you would like to attend, please contact taxpolicy@law.uci.edu

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November 26, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Herzfeld Presents Taxes Are Not Binary: The Unfortunate Consequences Of Splitting Taxes Into Arbitrary Categories Today At NYU

Mindy Herzfeld (Florida) presents Taxes Are Not Binary: The Unfortunate Consequences of Splitting Taxes Into Arbitrary Categories at NYU today as part of its Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium hosted by Daniel Shaviro:

HerzfeldBinary categorization of a “tax” into one of two alternative categories has important substantive implications in a number of disciplines, including constitutional law, tax law, accounting, and trade. Constitutional references to direct tax have been important through American history, factoring into the legality of various new types of taxes and now raising their head again in the context of current debates over the wealth tax. The binary separation of taxes into two categories of direct and indirect taxes also has important consequences in the trade area, as trade agreements generally categorize border adjusted direct taxes as export subsidies but generally bless border adjusted indirect taxes. A separate binary distinction exists between the definition of income and non-income tax. Within the U.S. federal income tax law, the split of a tax into an income or non-income tax has important consequences for creditability of foreign taxes, with large implications for companies’ bottom lines.  In the accounting world, the consequences of treatment of an income tax or non-income tax are relevant for financial statement purposes – the latter is classified in a separate line item in the income statement, while the former is “above the line” and lumped into gross income.

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November 23, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, November 19, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshop

Next Week's Tax Workshops - twitterTuesday, November 23: Mindy Herzfeld (Florida) will present Taxes Are Not Binary: The Unfortunate Consequences of Splitting Taxes Into Arbitrary Categories as part of the NYU Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Daniel Shaviro.

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November 19, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Aprill Presents Federal Charities: Blurring The Line Between Public And Private Today At Indiana

Ellen Aprill (Loyola-L.A.; Google Scholar) presents Federal Charities: Blurring the Line between Public and Private at Indiana today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by Leandra Lederman:

Aprill-Ellen-faculty-profile-2000pxThe standard view of the relationship between nonprofits and government assumes that the two are separate and distinct. In the late 1990’s, for example, Professor Evelyn Brody wrote an influential paper conceptualizing government and charity as competing sovereigns. Similarly, the introduction to the 2017 essay collection Nonprofits and Government: Collaboration and Conflict acknowledges that sometimes governments "set up nonprofit corporations to carry out some public programs."  It points to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting as an example, but implies such a choice seldom occurs. The collection’s first essay, authored by Young and Casey, conveys the common understanding of the relationship: Supplementary, Complementary, or Adversarial? Nonprofit-Government Relations. In the supplementary model, nonprofits fulfil demand for public goods that the government does not, with an inverse relationship between private and government expenditure. In the complementary model, nonprofits partner with government, which often finances them to deliver public goods. If adversarial to government, nonprofits seek to change governmental policy, some urging increased and some decreased governmental operations. But none of these characterizations allow for entities that exhibit characteristics of both government and charity.

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November 18, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Choi Presents Beyond Purposivism In Tax Law Today At UC-Irvine

Jonathan Choi (Minnesota; Google Scholar) presents Beyond Purposivism in Tax Law at UC-Irvine today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium:

ChoiConventional wisdom holds that purposivist theories of statutory interpretation solve the problem of tax shelters, because shelters comply with the text but not the purpose of tax statutes. But the predominant form of purposivism in tax scholarship, which combines specific statutory purposes with general structural principles of tax law, cannot separate shelters from ordinary tax planning. Although tax shelters claim benefits that exceed specific purposes and do not align with objective general principles, so do some widely accepted tax strategies.

This Article therefore proposes a new framework to go beyond purposivism in tax law, complementing purposivist techniques with pragmatism or doctrinalism. Pragmatism applies explicit policy judgments when statutory purposes run out; doctrinalism applies rules, like canons of construction, that provide determinate answers when statutory purpose is ambiguous. Pragmatism generally leads to better results in any particular case, while doctrinalism provides taxpayers certainty in planning legitimate transactions.

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November 17, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Goodman & Whitten Present Automating The 1040 Today At Georgetown

Lucas Goodman (Office of Tax Analysis, U.S. Treasury Department) & Andrew Whitten (Office of Tax Analysis, U.S. Treasury Department; Google Scholar) present Automating the 1040: How Accurately and for Whom Can We Prepopulate Individual Income Tax Returns? at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop hosted by Brian Galle:

Goodman-whittenTo make tax filing more efficient and to redistribute the filing burden, some commentators have proposed having the IRS pre-populate tax returns for individuals. We evaluate this hypothetical policy using a large, nationally representative sample of returns filed for tax year 2019. Between 40 and 50 percent of returns could be accurately pre-populated using information returns and the prior year return. 

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November 16, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Monday, November 15, 2021

Stantcheva Presents Social Position And Fairness Views Today At Loyola-L.A.

Stefanie Stantcheva (Harvard; Google Scholar) presents Social Position and Fairness Views (with Kristoffer Balle Hvidberg (Copenhagen) & Claus Kreiner (Copenhagen; Google Scholar)) at Loyola-L.A. today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium:

StantchevaWe link survey data on Danish people’s perceived income position and views of inequality within various reference groups to administrative records on their reference groups, income histories, and life events. For all reference groups, people exhibit center bias, whereby lower-ranked respondents in a group tend to place themselves higher because they think others’ incomes are lower, while higher-ranked respondents place themselves lower. People view inequalities within co-workers and education group as most unfair, but underestimate inequality most exactly within these groups. Perceived fairness of inequalities is strongly related to current position, moves with shocks like unemployment or promotions, and changes when experimentally showing people their actual positions.

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November 15, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, November 12, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - linkedinMonday, November 15: Stefanie Stantcheva (Harvard; Google Scholar) will present Social Position and Fairness Views (with Kristoffer Balle Hvidberg (Copenhagen) & Claus Kreiner (Copenhagen; Google Scholar)) as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here.

Tuesday, November 16: Lucas Goodman (Office of Tax Analysis, U.S. Treasury Department) & Andrew Whitten (Office of Tax Analysis, U.S. Treasury Department; Google Scholar) will present Automating the 1040: How Accurately and for Whom Can We Prepopulate Individual Income Tax Returns? as part of the Georgetown Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Brian Galle

Wednesday, November 17: Jonathan Choi (Minnesota; Google Scholar) will present Beyond Purposivism in Tax Law as part of the UC-Irvine Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact taxpolicy@law.uci.edu

Thursday, November 18: Ellen Aprill (Loyola-L.A.; Google Scholar) will present Federal Charities: Blurring the Line between Public and Private as part of the Indiana Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Leandra Lederman.

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November 12, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Shaviro Presents Tax Law, Inequality, And Redistribution Today At Florida

Daniel N. Shaviro (NYU) presents Tax Law, Inequality, and Redistribution: Recent and Possible Future Developments virtually at Florida today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by David Hasen:

Shaviro (2015)The current age of inequality is also an age of extensive tax and related public economics scholarship about inequality. Three prominent aspects of recent research especially stand out. The first concerns empirical measurement of economic inequality, as it has changed over time. The second concerns different mechanisms for taxing the rich, such as through the taxation of income, wealth, consumption, or gratuitous transfers. The third concerns new uses of the tax system to address poverty.

Each of these research areas can, should, and undoubtedly will continue to develop. I will suggest, however, that two further sets of issues raised by inequality demand greater attention than they have heretofore received. The first is normative inquiry regarding why, when, how, and to what extent inequality matters, moving beyond the economic literature’s often predominant focus on declining marginal utility. The second is better connecting the analysis of purely economic inequality to that of its other dimensions, such as racial and ethnic inequality. In both areas, given tax law’s institutional focus, a key aim should be to offer policymakers potentially usable guidance, by suggesting what practical implications a particular normative view (and/or particular empirical findings) might have

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November 12, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Brennan Presents The Tax Portfolio Today At Boston College

Tom Brennan (Harvard) presents The Tax Portfolio at Boston College today as part of its Tax Policy Collaborative hosted by Jim Repetti, Diane Ring, and Shu Yi Oei: 

Brennan (2017)This paper demonstrates that a linear tax on capital is equivalent to one that imposes an ex ante lump-sum payment on a taxpayer’s position with respect to a particular asset portfolio, referred to herein as the “tax portfolio,” and no tax on any portfolio orthogonal to it. Among the orthogonal portfolios, there may or may not be a portfolio with a non-zero (pre-tax) market price. If there is not such a portfolio, then the tax is equivalent to an ex ante wealth tax, and the result is the same as found by Kaplow (1994). If, however, there is an orthogonal portfolio with non-zero price, then the tax portfolio may be chosen to have zero market price, and there exists an “untaxed capital portfolio” that is effectively not subject to tax and that has non-zero market price. In this case, the tax burden is separated from the total amount of capital invested. A taxpayer has flexibility to allocate capital to the untaxed capital portfolio and thereby avoid any tax burden. Only an investment in the tax portfolio results in a tax burden, with a short position in the portfolio resulting in an effective tax subsidy.

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November 12, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Pomeranz Presents Ghosting The Tax Authority: Fake Firms And Tax Fraud Today At The OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks

Dina Pomeranz (Zurich; Google Scholar) presents Ghosting the Tax Authority: Fake Firms and Tax Fraud (with Paul Carrillo (George Washington; Google Scholar), Dave Donaldson (MIT; Google Scholar) & Monica Singhal (UC-Davis)) today as part of the OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks Series (OMG = Oxford-Michigan-MIT-Munich-Georgetown):

Dina_pomeranzBillions of dollars in tax revenue are lost annually due to tax fraud using "ghost firms". These fake firms issue fraudulent receipts for false deductions. We provide a window into this global phenomenon by exploiting transaction-level tax data and an innovative policy experiment in Ecuador. Over 5\% of incorporated firms make purchases from ghost firms. These client firms are large and disproportionately owned by high-income individuals. An enforcement campaign, which targeted the client firms rather than chasing ghost firms directly, led to over 25 million USD in additional tax reported from 435 firms within 3 months.

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November 11, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Hasen Presents Interest Deductibility Under The Income Tax Today At Indiana

David Hasen (Florida; Google Scholar) presents Interest Deductibility Under the Income Tax at Indiana today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by Leandra Lederman:

Hasen-photoThe proper tax treatment of interest expense has been a subject of disagreement since the inception of the modern income tax in the early twentieth century. On one view, the purpose of the financing transaction dictates the tax treatment, so that interest paid on borrowing used to finance consumption should be nondeductible, whereas business interest should be deductible. On another view, interest paid does not constitute a consumption item but rather a mere shift in resources and therefore should be deductible at all events, assuming the recipient includes in income the interest received.

Both of these views lead to conundrums that cannot be resolved without considering the broader question of why some expenses are deductible at all. 

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November 11, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Mason & Knoll Present Unbundling Undue Burdens Today At NYU

Ruth Mason (Virginia; Google Scholar) & Michael Knoll (Penn) present Unbundling Undue Burdens at NYU today as part of its Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium hosted by Daniel Shaviro:

Mason-knollCriticizing dormant Commerce Clause doctrine for, among other reasons, involving arbitrary distinctions and inviting judicial legislation, jurists and commentators have advocated for its abandonment or severe curtailment. This Article shows that when dormant Commerce Clause cases are divided by the type of burden they impose on interstate commerce, the need for different approaches to different types of cases emerges. Unbundling the doctrine helps explain the Supreme Court’s various doctrinal approaches in the cases, making it less ad hoc and haphazard and more connected to its justifications, which lie in federalism and the need to preserve a smoothly functioning national market.

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November 9, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Guo Presents Payroll Tax Incidence: Evidence From Unemployment Insurance Today At Georgetown

Audrey Guo (Santa Clara; Google Scholar) presents Payroll Tax Incidence: Evidence from Unemployment Insurance at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop hosted by Brian Galle:

Audrey-guoPayroll taxes act as the primary source of social insurance financing throughout the world. Economic models assume that in the long run payroll tax burdens fall fully on workers, but where does tax incidence fall when taxes are firm-specific and time-varying? Unemployment insurance in the United States has the key feature of varying both across employers and over time, creating the potential for labor demand responses if tax costs cannot be fully passed on to worker wages. Using state variation in tax schedules and matched employer-employee job spells from the LEHD, I study how employment and earnings respond to payroll tax changes. I also focus on the impact to seasonal and part-time workers who bear a larger UI tax burden, and study both increases and decreases in tax costs, to provide a more comprehensive analysis of payroll tax incidence.

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November 9, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Horwitz Presents Why We (Still) Need Non-Profit Hospitals Today At San Diego

Jill R. Horwitz (UCLA) presents Do We (Still) Need Nonprofit Hospitals? Ownership, Community Benefits, and Medical Services at San Diego today as part of its Tax Law Speaker Series

Jill-horwitzAlmost sixty years ago, observers predicted that the passage of Medicare and Medicaid would bring universal health insurance coverage and, therefore, would end the need for nonprofit hospitals. The ACA brought with it similar predictions. Yet nonprofit hospitals continue to exist. And, to the dismay of some critics and regulators, they continue both to earn substantial revenues and to provide only a little more free care to needy patients than comparable for-profit hospitals. In fact, it is unlikely that free care has ever been a distinguishing feature of nonprofit hospitals. At least some inmates in almshouses and some patients in the earliest American hospitals paid for their treatments with fees or with labor. To answer whether we need nonprofit hospitals—historically and today—requires evaluating the medical care they provide rather than spending on free care. Since at least the 1980s, nonprofits have provided a remarkably different mix of services, measured by their relative profitability, than their for-profit counterparts.

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November 9, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Saturday, November 6, 2021

Pildes Presents Political Fragmentation In Democracies Of The West At Virginia

Rick Pildes (NYU) presented Political Fragmentation in Democracies of the West at Virginia yesterday as part of its Oxford-Virginia Legal Dialogs hosted by Tsilly Dagan and Ruth Mason:

PildesThe decline of effective government throughout most Western democracies poses one of the greatest challenges democracy currently confronts. A major reason for this decline is that democracies have become more politically fragmented. In the proportional-representation systems of Western Europe, power is now divided across many more political parties, including recent, insurgent ones. In the first-past-the-post system of the United States, the main parties are much more internally fragmented. Outside groups, and even individual actors, have far greater power to disrupt and undermine government efforts to forge policy than in the past.

This article expands and extends earlier work I have done on political fragmentation in the United States. It identifies the various forms political fragmentation has taken across the Western democracies in general. The article then explores the major economic and cultural forces driving fragmentation across democracies.

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November 6, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, November 5, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - linkedinMonday, November 8: Michael Graetz (Columbia) will present Origins of the Antitax Movement as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here

Tuesday,  November 9: Audrey Guo (Santa Clara; Google Scholar) will present Payroll Tax Incidence: Evidence from Unemployment Insurance as part of the Georgetown Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Brian Galle.

Tuesday,  November 9: Ruth Mason (Virginia; Google Scholar) & Michael Knoll (Penn) will present Unbundling Undue Burdens as part of the NYU Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Daniel Shaviro

Tuesday,  November 9: Jill R. Horwitz (UCLA) will present Why We (Still) Need Non-Profit Hospitals as part of the San Diego Tax Law Speaker Series. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here.

Thursday,  November 11: David Hasen (Florida; Google Scholar) will present Interest Deductibility Under the Income Tax as part of the Indiana Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Leandra Lederman.

Thursday,  November 11: Dina Pomeranz (Zurich; Google Scholar) will present Ghosting the Tax Authority: Fake Firms and Tax Fraud with Paul Carrillo (George Washington; Google Scholar), Dave Donaldson (MIT; Google Scholar) & Monica Singhal (UC-Davis) as part of the OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks. If you would like to attend, see here.

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November 5, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Oei Presents World Tax Policy In The World Tax Polity Today At Utah

Shu-Yi Oei (Boston College; Google Scholar) presents World Tax Policy in the World Tax Polity? An Event History Analysis of OECD/G20 BEPS Inclusive Framework Membership, 47 Yale J. of Int'l L. __ (2022), at Utah today as part of its Faculty Workshop Series hosted by Young Ran (Christine) Kim: 

Shuyi-oeiThe last decade has seen the emergence of a new global tax order characterized by increased multilateral consensus and cooperation. World polity theory appears to be an obvious theoretical fit for conceptualizing this new order, which has been spearheaded by the OECD and G20. But what are the pathways by which this new “world tax polity” has emerged? Using event history regression methods, this Article investigates this question by studying the case of the OECD/G20 BEPS Inclusive Framework, a multilateral framework that currently includes 140 member countries, including 96 non-OECD, non-G20 countries.

How did these countries come to join the BEPS Inclusive Framework? World polity theory posits that the new multilateral Inclusive Framework could have been driven by normative, coercive, or mimetic processes. Of these possibilities, my Article finds that Inclusive Framework membership seems to have proliferated through a combination of normative and coercion-based pathways. Specifically, acculturation through prior involvement in certain OECD tax initiatives and inclusion in contemporaneous European Union tax haven “listing” (naming and shaming) processes was associated with a significantly higher hazard of Framework membership. By contrast, imitation of other countries did not appear to be a significant pathway.

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November 3, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Dagan Presents Cooperation And Its Discontents Today At UC-Irvine

Tsilly Dagan (Oxford; Google Scholar) presents Cooperation and its Discontents from International Tax Policy: Between Competition and Cooperation (Cambridge University Press 2017) at UC-Irvine today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium

Tsilly-daganIn this session of the UCI Tax Policy Colloquium, Professor Dagan will present a chapter from her book, International Tax Policy: Between Competition and Cooperation. The chapter examines why some countries participate in multilateral cooperative tax efforts that do not serve their best interests. The analysis reviews key multilateral efforts including double-taxation prevention, the campaign against harmful tax competition, information-sharing initiatives, and efforts countering base erosion and profit-shifting.

About Professor Tsilly Dagan
Professor Tsilly Dagan is Professor of Taxation Law at Oxford University and a Fellow of Worcester College. Professor Dagan’s main fields of research and teaching are tax law and policy (both domestic and international) and the interaction of the state and the market. Her book International Tax Policy: Between Competition and Cooperation (Cambridge University Press) is the winner of the 2017 Frans Vanistendael Award for International Tax Law.

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November 3, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Abreu & Greenstein Present Beyond Binary: The Normative Perfect Should Not Be The Enemy Of The Demonstrably Good Today At Georgetown

Alice Abreu (Temple) & Richard Greenstein (Temple; Google Scholar) present Beyond Binary: The Normative Perfect Should Not Be The Enemy Of The Demonstrably Good today at Georgetown as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop hosted by Brian Galle:

Abreu-greensteinIntroduction
Our normative claim in this Essay is straightforward: Not only should it not be “hornbook law that informal publications all the way up to revenue rulings are simply guides to taxpayers, and a taxpayer relies on them at his peril,” it should not be the law at all. If the IRS interprets the tax law, in writing, in a document intended to provide guidance to taxpayers or in a document addressed to a specific taxpayer, not only should the taxpayer be entitled to rely on what the IRS has said, but a court ought not dismiss it out of hand as having no bearing on its decision in the case. What is at stake is the legitimacy of an agency that needs legitimacy to promote taxpayer compliance.

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November 2, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Taite Presents How The TCJA Fortified The Great Wealth Divide Today At UC-Hastings

Phyllis Taite (Oklahoma City) presents May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor: How the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Fortified the Great Wealth Divide, 48 Pepp. L. Rev. 1023 (2021), at UC-Hastings today as part of its Tax Speaker Series hosted by Heather Field and Manoj Viswanathan:

Phyllis-taiteHave Americans become so desensitized to inequality that we have morphed into a state of dystopia, and vast inequalities have become normalized? Discussions of dystopia typically describe acts of oppression, tyranny, inequality, and an overall undesirable societal state. Dystopia analysis also requires a hard look at societal values to determine ways to avoid adverse outcomes that vast inequalities may produce. By identifying the undesirable outcome, there is an opportunity to avoid or reverse it by enacting laws to combat inequalities.

The Hunger Games is a fictional tale of wealthy society members enjoying the rewards of high society while using the poor societal members for labor and entertainment. This illustration may also depict American realities. For example, Panem is described as a country consisting of twelve districts and the Capitol. The Capitol is the power center where the wealthiest reside. While decisions regarding the entire society are made by a select few, namely the President, those decisions primarily benefit the wealthy, and they intentionally contribute to a state of inequality and selective oppression.

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November 2, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Monday, November 1, 2021

Nam Presents Just Taxation Of Crime: Should The Commission Of Crime Change One’s Tax Liability? Today At Loyola-L.A.

Jeesoo Nam (USC) presents Just Taxation of Crime: Should the Commission of Crime Change One’s Tax Liability? at Loyola-L.A. today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium:

Jeesoo-namThe tax law treats criminals differently from non-criminals. Should it? Under the public policy doctrine, various tax deductions are disallowed if they are closely tied to criminal activity. Running a criminal enterprise is thus tax disadvantaged compared to running a non-criminal enterprise.

This Article considers a variety of possible explanations. (1) The tax disadvantage provides an incentive not to commit crime. (2) The tax disadvantage helps to bring deserved punishment to the criminal. (3) Criminals have given up their right not to be taxed. (4) Criminals have taken an unfair advantage and so must be stripped of that unfair advantage. (5) Taxpayers deserve to bear the full cost of their criminal activities with no help from others.

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November 1, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, October 29, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - linkedinMonday, November 1: Jeesoo Nam (USC) will present Just Taxation of Crime: Should the Commission of Crime Change One’s Tax Liability? as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here.

Tuesday, November 2: Phyllis Taite (Oklahoma City) will present May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor: How the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Fortified the Great Wealth Divide, 48 Pepp. L. Rev. 1023 (2021), as part of the UC-Hastings Tax Speaker Series. If you would like to attend, please contact tax@uchastings.edu

Tuesday, November 2: Alice Abreu (Temple) & Richard Greenstein (Temple; Google Scholar) will present Beyond Binary: The Normative Perfect Should Not Be The Enemy Of The Demonstrably Good as part of the Georgetown Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Brian Galle

Wednesday, November 3: Tsilly Dagan (Oxford; Google Scholar) will present Cooperation and its Discontents (International Tax Policy: Between Competition and Cooperation (Cambridge University Press 2017)) as part of the UCI Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact taxpolicy@law.uci.edu

Wednesday, November 3: Shu-Yi Oei (Boston College; Google Scholar) will present World Tax Policy in the World Tax Polity? An Event History Analysis of OECD/G20 BEPS Inclusive Framework Membership, 47 Yale J. of Int'l L. __ (2022) as part of the Utah Faculty Workshop Series. If you would like to attend, please contact Young Ran (Christine) Kim.

Friday, November 5: Rick Pildes (NYU) will present Political Fragmentation in Democracies of the West as part of the Oxford-Virginia Legal Dialogs. If you would like to attend, please contact Tsilly Dagan or Ruth Mason.  

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October 29, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Abreu & Greenstein Present Beyond Binary: The Normative Perfect Should Not Be The Enemy Of The Demonstrably Good Today At Indiana

Alice Abreu (Temple) & Richard Greenstein (Temple; Google Scholar) present Beyond Binary: The Normative Perfect Should Not Be The Enemy Of The Demonstrably Good today at Indiana as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by Leandra Lederman:

Abreu-greensteinIntroduction
Our normative claim in this Essay is straightforward: Not only should it not be “hornbook law that informal publications all the way up to revenue rulings are simply guides to taxpayers, and a taxpayer relies on them at his peril,” it should not be the law at all. If the IRS interprets the tax law, in writing, in a document intended to provide guidance to taxpayers or in a document addressed to a specific taxpayer, not only should the taxpayer be entitled to rely on what the IRS has said, but a court ought not dismiss it out of hand as having no bearing on its decision in the case. What is at stake is the legitimacy of an agency that needs legitimacy to promote taxpayer compliance.

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October 28, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Viswanathan Presents Retheorizing Progressive Taxation Today At NYU

Manoj Viswanathan (UC-Hastings) presents Retheorizing Progressive Taxation at NYU today as part of its Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium hosted by Daniel Shaviro:

Manoj-viswanathanTax progressivity is undeniably central to both the detailed analytics of tax policy and the rhetorical arguments commonly used in public discourse. Yet there are surprisingly inconsistent and inaccurate uses of this seemingly objective term. By theorizing progressivity’s constitutive elements and identifying its shortcomings, this Article offers a novel taxonomy of how progressivity is assessed and why contradictory assessments are common.

This Article argues that, as a theoretical matter, accurately characterizing tax provisions as progressive (or regressive) requires assessing their burdens beyond simply the tax payments remitted. By failing to account for effects such as economic incidence and inefficiency costs, traditional progressivity analyses are incomplete. Relatedly, since the spending side of the budget process is functionally indistinguishable from taxation, accurate progressivity analyses must also consider where tax revenues are spent. This Article suggests that earmarked tax assessments—taxes allocated to specific purposes—could overcome some of these challenges.

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October 26, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Manoli Presents The Effects Of EITC Correspondence Audits On Low-Income Earners Today At Georgetown

Day Manoli (Georgetown; Google Scholar) presents The Effects of EITC Correspondence Audits on Low-Income Earners (with John Guyton, Kara Leibel, Mark Payne, Brenda Schafer (IRS) & Ankur Patel (US Treasury)) at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop hosted by Brian Galle:

Day-manoliThis paper studies the impacts of IRS EITC correspondence (mail) audits on taxpayer behaviors. The analysis documents widespread disallowance of EITC benefits due to nonresponse and insufficient response. Relative to similar nonaudited taxpayers, audited taxpayers over the years after being audited are less likely to claim EITC benefits and file tax returns, and qualifying children claimed on their returns are more likely to be claimed by other taxpayers. Audited taxpayers also appear less likely to have third-party and self-reported wages, with larger decreases for self-reported wages and for wage levels in the maximum EITC benefit region.

Conclusion
This paper presents an empirical analysis of the impacts of EITC correspondence audits on taxpayers. The primary goal of EITC correspondence audits is revenue protection by stopping erroneous EITC claims. Do EITC correspondence audits achieve this goal?

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October 26, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Monday, October 25, 2021

Taite Presents The Impact Of Tax Code Bias On The Racial Wealth Gap Today At Loyola-L.A.

Phyllis Taite (Oklahoma City) presents Inequality by Unnatural Selection: The Impact of Tax Code Bias on the Racial Wealth Gap at Loyola-L.A. today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium:

Phyllis-taiteOne of the underlying principles of social Darwinism is the belief that people are inherently strong or weak and those strengths and weaknesses determine their fate in life through the process of natural selection.  Wealthy taxpayers support the ideals of social Darwinism because it maintains the class divide and strengthens the racial divide through oppressive acts, particularly toward Black people.   Others likely support the principles based on their perceptions that everyone would start at the same position and competitors would face similar obstacles.  Based on the belief that the strongest will, and should survive, it is easy to promote the ideals of social Darwinism because fair competition should yield a just outcome.  Even when two people are planted in the same location, their backgrounds will likely determine their respective readiness for competition.  America has a history of deeply rooted racial oppression that built the foundation for one community and destroyed the foundation of others.  It is inherently unfair to place obstacles in the path of one group, and not the other, and expect the same level of performance.

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October 25, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, October 22, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Monday, October 25: Phyllis Taite (Oklahoma City) will present Inequality by Unnatural Selection: The Impact of Tax Code Bias on the Racial Wealth Gap as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here.

Tuesday, October 26: Day Manoli (Georgetown; Google Scholar) will present The Effects of EITC Correspondence Audits on Low-Income Earners (with John Guyton, Kara Leibel, Mark Payne, Brenda Schafer (IRS) & Ankur Patel (US Treasury)) as part of the Georgetown Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Brian Galle.

Tuesday, October 26: Manoj Viswanathan (UC-Hastings) will present Retheorizing Progressive Taxation as part of the NYU Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Daniel Shaviro.

Thursday October 28: Alice Abreu (Temple) & Richard Greenstein (Temple; Google Scholar) will present Beyond Binary: The Normative Perfect Should Not Be The Enemy Of The Demonstrably Good as part of the Indiana Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Leandra Lederman

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October 22, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Gamage Presents Political Optionality And Current-Assessment Tax Reform Today At UC-Irvine

David Gamage (Indiana; Google Scholar) presents Tax Now or Tax Never: Political Optionality and the Case for Current-Assessment Tax Reform (with John Brooks (Georgetown; Google Scholar)) at UC-Irvine today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium:

Gamage-davidThe U.S. income tax is broken. Due to the realization doctrine and taxpayers’ consequent ability to defer taxation of gains, taxpayers can easily minimize or avoid the taxation of investment income, a failure that is magnified many times over when considering the ultra-wealthy. As a result, this small group of taxpayers commands an enormous share of national wealth yet pays paltry taxes relative to the economic income their wealth produces—a predicament that this Article condemns as being economically, politically, and socially harmful.

The conventional view among tax law experts has assumed that the problems created by the realization doctrine can be fixed on the back end by adjusting the rules that govern taxation at the time of realization. Specifically, most tax scholars have favored reform proposals that would retain the realization doctrine, while aiming to impose taxes in a way that would erase or reduce the financial benefits of deferral. Examples include retrospective capital gains tax reforms, progressive consumption tax reforms, and more incremental reforms such as ending stepped-up basis.

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October 20, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Monday, October 18, 2021

Maag Presents The Next Stage Of The Child Tax Credit Today At Loyola-L.A.

Elaine Maag (Tax Policy Center) presents Issues In Child Benefit Administration In The United States: Imagining the Next Stage of the Child Tax Credit (with Samuel Hammond (Niskanen Center)) at Loyola-L.A. today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium:

Maag-elaineThe American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) expanded the Child Tax Credit (CTC) for one year and delivered it as a monthly benefit to the vast majority of recipients. Whether the credit will retain its current form, revert to its previous form, or take on a new form altogether is unclear. Even if the credit is extended, it is unlikely to be extended permanently and there remains the possibility that if will continue to evolve as discussions around providing a robust child benefit continue. A robust child benefit could provide a minimum source of support to all or most families with children which would mean that fewer children would grow up in poverty and would be harmed by temporary income drops. We compare how a tax credit such as the Child Tax Credit (CTC) administered by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or a universal child allowance administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA) could be structured to best meet the needs of families with children. Tax credits, in general, have been the more popular tool of choice for both Democrats and Republicans to redistribute income in recent years (Faricy 2015)–including the temporary expansion of the Child Tax Credit (CTC).

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October 18, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Friday, October 15, 2021

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Monday, October 18: Elaine Maag (Tax Policy Center) presents Issues In Child Benefit Administration In The United States: Imagining The Next Stage of The Child Tax Credit (with Samuel Hammond (Niskanen Center)) as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here.

Tuesday, October 19: Stephanie Hoffer (Indiana-Indianapolis; Google Scholar) presents Tax Legislation in Crises as part of the Georgetown Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop. If you would like to attend, please contact Brian Galle.

Wednesday, October 20: David Gamage (Indiana; Google Scholar) presents Tax Now or Tax Never: Political Optionality and the Case for Current-Assessment Tax Reform (with John Brooks (Georgetown; Google Scholar)) as part of the UC-Irvine Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please email taxpolicy@law.uci.edu

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October 15, 2021 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Hines Presents Evaluating Tax Harmonization Today At Georgetown

James Hines (Michigan; Google Scholar) presents Evaluating Tax Harmonization at Georgetown today as part of the OMG Transatlantic Tax Talks Series (OMG = Oxford-Michigan-MIT-Munich-Georgetown):

James-HinesTax harmonization can address downward rate pressure due to tax competition, but does so by imposing a common rate that may not suit all governments.  A second-order Taylor approximation yields the simple rule that tax rate harmonization advances collective government objectives only if tax competition reduces average tax rates by more than the standard deviation of observed tax rates.  Consequently, any objective-maximizing harmonized tax rate must exceed the sum of the observed average tax rate and the standard deviation of tax rates.  In 2020 the standard deviation of world corporate tax rates weighted by GDP was 4.5%, and the mean corporate tax rate 25.9%, so if competition sufficiently depresses tax rates then governments may find it attractive to harmonize at a corporate tax rate of 30.4% or higher. The minimum tax rate that most effectively advances collective objectives equals the average effect of tax competition plus the average tax rate in affected countries.  Hence there are dominated regions: in the 2020 data, there is no degree of tax competition for which a world minimum corporate tax rate between 4% and 27% would be consistent with maximizing collective objectives.

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October 14, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Hoffer Presents Tax Legislation In Crises Today At Indiana

Stephanie Hoffer (Indiana-Indianapolis; Google Scholar) presents Tax Legislation in Crises at Indiana-Bloomington today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by Leandra Lederman:

Stpehanie-hoffer

Introduction
Congress, during crises, uses tax law as an instrument of mitigation. A legislature convened in crisis, though, faces unusual informational, political, and time constraints. Tax legislation tends toward complexity. Passing complex legislation under unusual constraints likely precludes thorough contemporaneous consideration of the distributional or other policy effects of the legislation on a diverse group of stakeholders. Perhaps as a consequence, tax legislation passed in times of crises typically builds on prior crisis legislation and contains many recurring provisions. 

This essay examines recurring provisions in crisis-motivated tax and presents preliminary observations on a study of tax legislation passed in response to national crises during the years the 2000 – 2020. The study period includes the September 11 terrorist attacks, hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma, the 2008 housing market collapse, the Great Recession, and the COVID pandemic. The study examines which kinds of provisions recur under which circumstances, for whose benefit, and at what cost.

The broader work of which this essay is a part addresses three hypotheses. First, crisis tax legislation is formulaic, generally including a number of provisions drawn from prior tax crisis bills. Second, subsequent crisis tax legislation tends to expand the scope of provisions repeated from earlier crisis tax legislation. Third, among recurring provisions, privately-directed outlays via tax expenditure will outweigh Congressionally-directed outlays.

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October 14, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Blouin Presents Does Tax Planning Affect Organizational Complexity: Evidence From Check-the-Box Today At NYU

Jennifer Blouin (Penn) presents Does Tax Planning Affect Organizational Complexity: Evidence from Check-the-Box (with Linda Krull (Oregon; Google Scholar)) at NYU today as part of its Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium hosted by Dan Shaviro:

Blouin (2021)This study investigates the effect of the 1997 check-the-box regulations on the current effective income tax rates of U.S. multinational firms. Following the empirical methodology developed in Dyreng and Lindsey (2009), we measure the effect that the change in tax law has on the average worldwide, U.S., and foreign taxes paid on worldwide, federal and foreign pretax book income for a large sample of U.S. multinational firms. We find that on average U.S. multinational firms’ worldwide tax rates declined by 7.5% in the post-1996 period. Further, we find that the effect of the regulations was greater on U.S. multinational firms’ average foreign tax rates as compared to their average U.S. foreign tax rates. Our results also suggest that the effect is concentrated in the U.S. multinational firms that had a greater change in their ownership structures and a greater change in the balance of their intercompany payments in the post-1996 period.  

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October 12, 2021 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Workshops | Permalink