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76212 Revenue Law

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2018 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Law
Credit points: 6 cp
Result type: Grade and marks

Requisite(s): ((70417 Corporate Law AND 70617 Administrative Law) OR 70327 Commercial Law )
These requisites may not apply to students in certain courses.
There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.
Anti-requisite(s): 79017 Taxation Law

Description

Revenue law navigates students through the complexity of the Australian taxation system, providing sign posts along the way which deconstruct important principles. By analysing these principles in detail, students become proficient in applying the concepts to real life examples in the commercial world. By developing an understanding of how the taxation administration system operates, students are able to confidently apply it to contemporary revenue issues. Apart from the technical aspects of revenue law such as income, deductions, capital gains tax (CGT) and fringe benefits tax (FBT), students are called upon to consider tax planning and anti-avoidance rules. Students are immersed in topics such as taxation of companies and partnerships, CGT, FBT, goods and services tax and deductions. Students increase their practical knowledge of revenue law and apply their understanding to real life examples.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

Upon successful completion of this subject students should be able to:

1. Distinguish between the concepts of income and capital and correctly apply the law to current situations.
2. Critically evaluate and explain taxation legal principles applying to partnerships, trusts and companies;
3. Critically analyse the circumstances in which deductions may be claimed and advise clients of the types of work related deductions that are applicable to their industry or occupation.
4. Discuss and provide written advice in relation to fringe benefits tax and goods and services tax.
5. Critically analyse the tax administration system, tax planning and anti-avoidance strategies in the context of providing advice to clients.

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs)

This subject also contributes specifically to the development of the following graduate attributes which reflect the course intended learning outcomes:

  • Legal Knowledge
    A coherent understanding of fundamental areas of legal knowledge including the Australian legal system, social justice, cultural and international contexts and the principles and values of ethical practice. (1.0)
  • Critical Analysis and Evaluation
    A capacity to think critically, strategically and creatively including an ability to identify and articulate legal issues, apply reasoning and research, engage in critical analysis and make reasoned choices. (3.0)
  • Communication and Collaboration
    Effective and appropriate communication skills including highly effective use of the English language, an ability to inform, analyse, report and persuade using an appropriate medium and message and an ability to respond appropriately. (5.0)

Teaching and learning strategies

Strategy 1: Preparation for seminars and tutorials.

Through completion of readings before class (as specified in this outline and on UTSOnline), students will develop knowledge of key concepts in Revenue Law that they will then analyse and further develop in seminars and tutorials. Students are encouraged to engage and collaborate with the Discussion Board to seek clarification or raise issues about their readings or topics discussed in class. The Discussion Board is monitored by staff. Students are required to consider solutions to tutorial questions (available on UTSOnline) prior to class. Preparation is an essential part of a legal practitioner’s work with student preparation providing a basis for developing self-management skills.

Strategy 2: Intensive seminars

Intensive seminars engage students in learning about the principles which apply in Australia to Revenue Law. The intensive seminar is a combination of a lecture, subject presentation and case study. The intensive seminars are designed to be interactive: students are encouraged to ask questions and enhance their understanding of relevant concepts. By answering and asking questions based on the set problems, students have opportunities from the first class to receive direct feedback from their teacher and peers as to their understanding of Revenue Law and the development of their critical thinking skills. The seminars will also allow students to clarify and examine any questions which arise from the required readings.

Strategy 3: Problem-solving

The ability to solve problems is an essential skill in lawyering. Problem-solving involves interpreting and analysing legislation and cases; and identifying and applying the relevant requirements in resolving revenue law issues in problem-based scenarios. A selection of problems will be provided throughout the subject and discussed in the seminars and tutorials. Students will need to read and analyse the subject materials and then apply this analysis to the problem questions. In each tutorial students will practice their problem-solving skills collaboratively to improve their ability to think creatively and analytically, seeing problems from both sides of an adversarial dispute. Students are encouraged to communicate well-reasoned, justifiable and logical arguments which demonstrate their ability to apply revenue law theory to practical situations. All tutorials involve collaborative whole-of-class discussion to interpret and analyse the legislation and cases.

Students will work in groups of two to analyse and attempt to resolve an issue assigned by the lecturer and make a short oral presentation of their results. Working in groups of two will encourage students to formulate their ideas in to a cohesive and persuasive argument, which is what lawyers in practice are required to do every day. Active participation in the tutorials provides students with formative feedback which they can use when making their group presentation.

Strategy 4: Applying Research Skills to problem solve

Critical reading and analysis of relevant materials for legal research and writing are important skills in law. These skills also translate into any professional context where critical, strategic and creative thinking is applied and communicated. In undertaking the required reading in preparation for the seminars and tutorials and then attending and actively participating in the seminars and tutorials, students will be able to see how revenue law concepts are applied to solving real life problems.

Students will learn to apply their knowledge and skills derived from their collaborative learning in the weekly seminars to practical hypothetical problems that are commonly faced by taxation lawyers. The three different types of assessment, oral presentation, written advice and exam, allow students to become familiar with these forms of delivery which are used by lawyers and taxation advisors daily. An important aspect of becoming a lawyer is the ability to analyse a problem and then apply the correct legal solution to meet the client’s needs. The class activities and assessments in this subject will assist students in honing these skills for practice.

Strategy 5: Feedback

Students will receive feedback on assessment tasks from the markers and will benefit from ongoing peer and staff formative feedback through in-class group and individual activities and engagement with Discussions Board. The interactive nature of the seminars allows students to test their concepts in class and receive constructive feedback. Feedback focuses not only on the right answer but also on the ways in which a student could have better approached the various tasks and strategies for improvement on future tasks.

Subject Delivery

The subject will be taught in intensive mode, with five all day seminars and four tutorials.

Content (topics)

  • Residence and source
  • Concepts of income and capital
  • Capital gains tax
  • Deductions
  • Tax accounting
  • Trading stock
  • Taxation of partnerships
  • Taxation of trusts
  • Taxation of companies and shareholders
  • Fringe benefits tax
  • Goods and services tax
  • Tax administration
  • Tax planning and anti-avoidance

Assessment

Assessment task 1: Class Participation

Intent:

The aim of this task is to test legal analysis and interpretation and to develop communication and collaboration skills.

Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

4 and 5

This task contributes specifically to the development of the following graduate attributes:

3.0 and 5.0

Weight: 20%
Length:

Part A: 1000 words equivalent.

Part B: 500 words equivalent.

Criteria:

Part A: Seminar and tutorial participation (10%)

  • Sustained participation across the session.
  • Engagement in class and evidence of preparation as demonstrated by discussion and examination of relevant points and topics in class.
  • Quality of preparation demonstrating evidence of critical thinking in relation to the topics and issues discussed in class.
  • Reflective, responsive and respectful attitudes towards other perspectives – (participation demonstrates willingness to consider and engage with alternative viewpoints and, where relevant, to admit to lack of understanding or areas of confusion).
  • Clarity of expression, use of appropriate language and a demonstrated ability to formulate responses in clear and succinct terms.
  • Taking initiative in generating discussion, encouraging others to participate and raising pertinent questions, which contributes to a collaborative learning environment.
  • Leading discussion in tutorial of an allocated question.

Part B: Short Presentation

Presentation skills (5%):

  • Persuasive and engaging delivery of the presentation.
  • Identification of the key issues raised in the assigned topic
  • Clarity and structure of the argument
  • Correct explanation of the context and solution using legal terminology.
  • Correct interpretation of legal authorities
  • Co-operation with the other team member
  • Unified presentation in which both students are actively involved.

Criteria for Response to Questions, Oral Argument (5%):

  • Ability to anticipate questions and respond clearly and correctly

Assessment task 2: Written advice

Intent:

To test the application of knowledge and understanding of principles and to develop the legal skill of providing written advice to clients.

Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

This task contributes specifically to the development of the following graduate attributes:

1.0, 3.0 and 5.0

Weight: 30%
Length:

Part A: 1000 words

Part B: 500 words

Total for Assessment task 2: 1500 words

Criteria:

The following criteria will be used when making an assessment of the advice:

  • Legal issues considered in the advices have been interpreted correctly and in context,
  • Cases or legislation cited have been applied correctly to the facts,
  • Persuasiveness of the arguments put forward in the advice, including originality of argument
  • Whether a counter argument has been considered and addressed,
  • Professionalism of advice and whether all ethical and regulatory considerations have been addressed.
  • Clarity of writing, structure and grammar used in the advice.
  • Citations must comply with the Australian Guide to Legal Citation.

Assessment task 3: Final exam: Legal problem solving

Intent: Tests application of knowledge and understanding of principles
Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

4 and 5

This task contributes specifically to the development of the following graduate attributes:

1.0 and 3.0

Weight: 50%
Length:

2500 words

Criteria:
  • Correct identification of important legal issues (and ignores irrelevant issues)
  • Identification of the relevant facts
  • Identification of the relevant legal principles
  • Correct application of relevant cases and statutory materials
  • Application of facts to relevant law
  • Clarity of writing, structure and grammar and persuasiveness of arguments
  • Management of competing arguments.

Required texts

Michael Kobetsky, Catherine Brown, Rodney Fisher, Christine Peacock and Sylvia Vilios, Income Tax: Text, Materials and Essential Cases (9th ed, Federation Press, 2016)

References

  • Robin Woellner, Stephen Barkoczy, Shirley Murphy, Chris Evans and Dale Pinto, Australian Taxation Law 2017, ( 27th ed, Oxford University Press Australia, 2017)
  • C Coleman, G Hart, B Bondfield, M McKerchar, J McLaren, K Sadiq, A Ting, Australian Tax Analysis: Cases, Commentary, Commercial Applications and Questions, (9th ed, Law Book Co of Australasia, 2012)
  • Deutsch, Friezer, Fullerton, Hanley, Snape, The Australian Taxation Handbook 2017, (Law Book Co of Australasia, 2012),
  • Australian Master Tax Guide 2017, (60th ed, CCH Australia, 2017)
  • Frank Gilders, John Taylor, Michael Walpole, Mark Burton and Tony Ciro, Understanding Taxation Law 2016 (Lexis Nexis, 2015)
  • Paul Kenny, Michael Blissenden and Sylvia Vilios, Australian Tax 2017, (LexisNexis Butterworths Australia, 2017)

Legislation:

  • Fundamental Tax Legislation 2017, (Thomson Reuters, 2017); OR
  • Stephen Barkoczy, Core Tax Legislation and Study Guide, ( 20th ed, Oxford University Press Australia, 2017) OR
  • Paul Kenny, Concise Tax Legislation ( LexisNexis Butterworths Australia, 2017 )

Case books:

  • Stephen Barkoczy, Australian Tax Casebook, (12th ed, Oxford University Press Australia, 2014), OR
  • R Krever, Australian Taxation Law Cases 2017, (Law Book Co of Australasia, 2017)

Study guides:

  • H Hodgson, C Mortimer, J. Butler, Tax Questions and Answers 2017,( Law Book Co of Australasia, 2017)
  • Thomson L Nethercott, G Richardson, K Devos, Australian Taxation Study Manual, Questions and Suggested Solutions, (24th ed, CCH Australia, 2014)

Other resources

Websites: