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This specialist subject taught by leading members of the Victorian Bar specialising in tax, teaches all of the legal principles associated with tax litigation. It addresses the system of tax appeals, administrative and judicial review of decisions made by the Commissioner, evidence-gathering and the preparation of objections, tax appeal statements, affidavits, expert reports and legal submissions in a tax case. It explains how tax cases are tried and how they are dealt with at appellate level. It also covers the rulings system, the imposition and review of penalties and the Commissioner‘s rights of recovery. The focus of the subject is on the practical, and not theoretical, application of these principles.
Principal topics include:
- Introduction and the appeals process under Part IVC of the Taxation Administration Act 1953 (Cth)
- Challenging an assessment, objections, objections decisions and appeal
- The audit process and the Commissioner‘s information-gathering powers
- Interlocutory steps for getting a case ready for trial, including the Federal Court Taxation Practice Note No.1
- Written advocacy—the different needs at various stages of the appeals process
- The hearing
- Use of expert witnesses
- Appeals to Federal, Full Federal and High Courts
- The rulings process
- Judicial review of decisions made by the Commissioner
- Recovery of tax.
Intended learning outcomes
A student who has successfully completed this subject will:
- Have an advanced and integrated understanding of the tax law and policy relating to Australia’s rules for dealing with tax litigation
- Be able to critically examine, analyse, interpret and assess the effectiveness of these laws and policies
- Be an engaged participant in debate regarding emerging and contemporary issues in the field of tax litigation
- Have a sophisticated appreciation of the factors and processes driving change in this area
- Have the cognitive and technical skills to generate critical and creative ideas relating to laws and policies dealing with tax litigation, and to evaluate them
- Have the communication skills to clearly articulate and convey complex information regarding the various approaches to dealing with tax litigation to relevant specialist and non-specialist audiences
- Be able to demonstrate autonomy, expert judgment and responsibility as a practitioner and learner in the field of tax litigation.
Last updated: 10 November 2023