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Tax Law

Adams, Helen and Richard Morley, ‘Taxing Excess COVID-19 Support Payments’ (2020) 1499 Tax Journal 12–15
Abstract: Discusses HMRC’s powers to recover payments under the coronavirus job retention scheme and self-employment income support scheme to taxpayers who were not entitled. Considers HMRC assessments, penalties, and what taxpayers should do if they find there has been a mistake.

Ainsworth, Richard Thompson and Xiuyuan (Tony) Hu, ‘A Proposal for Taxing Cryptocurrency In the Midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic’ [2020] (25 May) Tax Notes International 921–929
Abstract: In this article, the authors present the case for a globally effective remedial tax on cryptocurrency transactions that could help fund multinational relief efforts, such as providing aid to jurisdictions affected by the COVID-19 virus and countries fighting the opioid crisis.

Alm, James et al, ‘Tax Policy Measures to Combat the SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic and Considerations to Improve Tax Compliance: A Behavioral Perspective’ (WU International Taxation Research Paper Series No 2020–10, 14 September 2020)
Abstract: Governments have taken remarkable measures during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in their efforts to safeguard citizens’ health and the economy. As a consequence, public debts have reached unprecedented levels, which will require at some point higher taxes. Ensuring that citizens pay these taxes requires consideration of the many factors that will likely affect their tax compliance decisions. In this paper, we reflect from a behavioral economic perspective the impact of tax policy measures on the perception, evaluation, and behavior of citizens and derive considerations to devise appropriate tax policies to ensure compliance in the future. We start with speculations about citizens’ views of governmental restrictions and economic stimulus measures in response to the crisis, we apply these speculations to the acceptance and perceived effectiveness of policy measures on citizens’ tax compliance behaviors, and we finish with their likely impact on determinants of tax compliance. Building on the derived insights, we deduce a set of considerations to improve tax compliance – and to generate the necessary tax revenues to deal with the after-effects of SARS-CoV-2 when the pandemic is under control: communication, transparency and justification of measures, access to support, service provision, audits and penalties in case of free-riding, targeted audits, building social norms of cooperation, consideration of framing effects, development of plans and strategies for the future, and anticipation of hindsight biases.

Almand, Ken and Paul Daly, ‘Transfer Pricing Implications of COVID-19’ (2020) 1494 Tax Journal 15–18
Abstract: Discusses aspects of transfer pricing policies which groups should review if the coronavirus pandemic has affected profitability. Considers supplies of services, limited risk distribution or contract manufacturing of goods, intellectual property licensing, and intercompany financing.

Arnold, Nciko Wa Nciko, ‘Evacuated from Africa but Present in Africa’s Economy through Telework: Who Gets to Tax Them?’ (Afronomicslaw COVID-19 Symposium on International Economic Law in the Global South (May 2020), Symposium II: Intellectual Property, Technology and Agriculture)
Abstract: Extract from Introduction: I begin by analysing the conditions that the UN and the OECD Model Conventions require of a country for it to have taxation rights over a cross-border worker. This analysis shows that such conditions are unfair for African countries amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Then, I provide recommendations for the way forward. I conclude by providing some theoretical grounding for these recommendations.

Bagja, Hafied Noor and Et Al, ‘The Legal Aspect of Changing the Final Income Tax as a Tax Incentive for MSMEs during the Covid-19 Period in Indonesia’ (2021) 12(8) Turkish Journal of Computer and Mathematics Education (TURCOMAT) 322–326
Abstract: The 2019 Coronavirus Disease (Covid-19) pandemic, which attacked globally, including in Indonesia in early March 2020, triggered chaos that affected many sectors in Indonesia, such as the tourism and entertainment sector, industrial development, education, including the economy and MSMEs in it. MSMEs have an important role in national economic development. Apart from playing a role in economic growth and employment, it also provides income to the state through paid income taxes. The government is trying to combat this. So that the government issued a final PPh change policy for MSMEs so that this study aims to find out how the legal aspects of Final Income Tax changes as tax incentives for MSMEs. This research uses normative juridical research with a one-stop approach. The results of the study provide an illustration that changes in Final Income Tax are based on Article 6 Number (1) letter (i) of the Income Tax Law, which is the basis for implementing the Article is PP. 93 Tahn 2010, PMK No. 76 / PMK.03 / 2011 as further implementing regulations, and then also required to pay attention to the provisions of PMK No. 86 / PMK.03 / 2020 with the aim of obtaining a reduction in taxable income.

Baldwin, David R et al, ‘Developments in Individual Taxation’ [2021] (March) Tax Adviser 1–12
Abstract: The article provides an overview of the recent developments in the area of taxation under November 2020 in the U.S. Topics include regulations were issued clarifying the definition of qualifying child and relative for child tax credit and other tax purposes; Internal Revenue Service provided guidance on pandemic-related payments under an employer leave-based donation program as part of Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act; and amendments made to Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Barnes, Nancy M et al, ‘The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021: Implications for Business: Covid-19 Update’ (2021) 38(3) Journal of Taxation of Investments 43–56
Abstract: This article summarizes key aspects of portions of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, which was signed into law on December 27, 2020, and provided an additional set of relief to businesses and individuals in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The article focuses on relief provisions that are most relevant to businesses. (It has not been updated to include any additional relief, extensions, or expansions that were enacted after December 27, 2020.)

Borden, Bradley T, ‘Universal Deadline Extensions Draw Attention to Section 1031 Periods’ (2020) 167 Tax Notes Federal 601
Abstract: The IRS published Notice 2020-23 extending section 1031 periods, but that guidance lacks clarity related to several key issues. The IRS has indicated that it will issue additional guidance in the form of FAQs, which should add clarity. Until then, exchangers, qualified intermediaries, and tax advisors must make decisions based upon the existing guidance. We hope the IRS will soon address issues that are central to those decisions. In the meantime, this article does the following:1. Provides three criteria that apply to the analysis and application of Notice 2020-23 and inform future guidance the IRS may publish for exchanges affected by COVID-19: (i) extend generous relief to exchangers, (ii) be simple to apply and explain, and (iii) vivify real estate markets.2. Explains the technical aspects of IRS extension guidance, assisting parties making decisions prior to the IRS additional guidance or will make decisions regarding issues that the IRS guidance may not cover.3. Demonstrates that the 120-day extension in Rev. Proc. 2018-58 should apply to exchanges covered by Notice 2020-23.4. Warns that qualified intermediaries should err on the side of caution by interpreting Notice 2020-23 as applying the 120-day extension to avoid distributing proceeds prior to the expiration of the (g)(6) restrictions.5. Suggests that IRS guidance should apply the Notice 2020-23 extensions to all exchanges entered into on or before any date from January 20, 2020, until July 15, 2020. The detailed analysis in the article will serve as a reference for parties dealing with pending or planned exchanges and for parties who must carefully analyze the application of extension guidance in the future.

Caminer, Mitchell, ‘Enjoined and Incarcerated: Complications with Incarcerated People Seeking Economic Relief under the CARES Act’ [2021] University of Chicago Legal Forum (forthcoming)
Abstract: Congress passed the first round of checks as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (‘CARES Act’) in late March 2020 to infuse more than $2 trillion into the national economy and address the overlapping medical and economic emergencies stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic. But incarcerated individuals were initially excluded from receiving stimulus checks, despite being eligible to receive them. This delay in delivering immediate cash assistance through the CARES Act to incarcerated individuals exposes the inadequacy of the tax administrative doctrine in resolving emergency relief disputes and how exclusionary measures embedded in the tax system and other economic policies inhibit the rehabilitation prospects of incarcerated people. Millions of Americans made personal and financial sacrifices in 2020 to aid the public health efforts, including incarcerated individuals. In return, those who were denied economic relief on an arbitrary basis by the government should not have to wait until the following tax year to seek a legal remedy. In other words, the legal framework for challenging tax decisions is too unsympathetic toward many taxpayers that rely on policies embedded in the tax code for immediate economic relief. Further, by providing nearly universal economic stimulus, Congress recognized the plight of incarcerated individuals during a pandemic and moved away from the exclusionary stimulus measures enacted in prior economic crises. Providing economic stimulus to those in incarceration is sound economic stimulus policy so long as punitive measures for individuals in and exiting incarceration are embedded in tax and economic policy.

Camp, Bryan T, ‘Taxation of Electronic Gaming’ (2020) 77(2) Washington & Lee Law Review 661–750
Abstract: At a doctrinal level, the subject of this Article is timely. During this time of the coronavirus pandemic, casinos have been closed and large populations have been subject to stay-home orders from local and state authorities. One can reasonably expect a large increase in electronic gaming and thus an increased need for proper consideration of its taxation. This Article argues for a cash-out rule of taxation. At a deeper level, the subject of this Article is timeless. Tax law is wickedly complex for a reason. This Article explores that complexity using the example of electronic gaming. It grapples with the source of that complexity: an inherent and unresolvable tension between economic theories of income and the practical needs of administering a system of taxation to a large population in a democracy. That tension led some scholars to argue for a standards-based approach to taxation. This Article considers and rejects that argument. Legal rules are necessary to mediate between theory and practice. Hence, this Article demonstrates the continued relevance and importance of doctrinal analysis in legal scholarship.

Carrick, Sarah, ‘COVID-19 and the Taxation of Professional Athletes’ Image Rights’ [2020] The International Sports Law Journal (advance article, published 15 December 2020)
Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has raised and will continue to raise issues for sport for some time to come. In particular, the pressure put on athletes by politicians to take wage deductions and wage deferrals has caused controversy. This scrutiny of athletes’ tax affairs is not unusual, given the particular and somewhat constant media focus, coupled with HMRC’s ‘Football Compliance Project’ regarding footballer’s use of image rights companies to make tax deductions. This focus often presents footballers in an unflattering light. However, the purpose of this article is to demonstrate that the issues regarding athlete image rights are generally not due to overly sophisticated or overt actions by footballers and/or their agents but are the consequence of a convoluted system of taxation. Ultimately, HMRC guidance allows athletes to exploit an ‘image right’ to make tax savings. This ‘image right’ does not exist in law. Thus, this article will show that the current controversy surrounding footballers and their tax affairs is not a novel concept and that in the context of image rights athletes, clubs and agents have been forced to navigate a system of tax which is confusing, at best. In short, the issues surrounding footballers and image rights are due to the fact that ‘image rights’ are protected in one area of law yet do not exist in another.

Cheng, Vivian, ‘Tax Update’ [2020] (June) New Zealand Law Journal 161–162
Abstract: As New Zealand moves closer to containing theCOVID-19 outbreak, the focus of the Government will be shifting from battling the public health crisis to restarting the embattled economy. While the temporary tax loss carry back scheme announced by the Government on 15 April 2020 was intended to provide immediate cash flow relief to businesses suffering losses as a result of COVID-19, the permanent tax loss carry-back scheme and relaxation of the tax loss continuity rules announced at the same time are longer term reforms of broader application that will hopefully assist in that recovery.

Choi, Ji-Hung, Jiho Yoon and Ju Myung Song, ‘A Contract for New Vaccine R&D under COVID-19’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper ID 3781132, 7 February 2021)
Abstract: This paper analyzes an incentive contract for new vaccine research and development (R&D) under a pandemic situation such as COVID-19. We study how a public sector (such as a government) designs an R&D contract and offers it to pharmaceutical enterprises. A simply agency-theoretic model is employed to explore the contract whose terms are an upfront grant as a fixed fee and a sales tax credit as an incentive tool. Examining how the values of related parameters affect contract term determinations, we found conditions that increase or decrease the tax credit and fixed fee. Unlike the general arguments from existing studies of incentive contracts, the role of a fixed fee outweighs the role of a tax credit for new vaccine development under pandemics. We also found that risk averseness and an in ated approval likelihood play significant roles in terms of the tax credit and fixed fee, respectively.

Collins, Jason, ‘COVID-19, Tax Policy and Climate Change’ (2020) 1491 Tax Journal 8
Abstract: Calls for a coherent approach to tax and spending policy, to achieve the UK targets for reducing emissions and mitigating climate change, while facilitating economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

Coronavirus Emergency Law Gives Paid Leave: Federal Law Gives Payroll Tax Breaks to Offset Costs to Businesses’ (2020) 256(9) Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 966–967
Abstract: Recently passed federal legislation gives temporary additional paid sick leave to workers for use related to the COVID-19 public health emergency. It also extends family and medical leave for workers if they are unable to work and need to care for their child because of a school closure or unavailability of child care because of the coronavirus. Exemptions apply to certain businesses, and these provisions only last until the end of the year. Tax credits will be given to employers, intended to mitigate the impacts of the expanded leave provisions.

Craggs, Adam and Constantine Christofi, ‘Contentious Tax: Quarterly Review’ (2020) 1501 Tax Journal 18–20
Abstract: Reports on developments in HMRC’s approach to tax non-compliance: HMRC’s plans to investigate misuse of the coronavirus job retention scheme; nudge letters to taxpayers to report overseas income and gains, in view of information exchange; and allegations that a company made misrepresentations to gain tax advantage.

Crawford, Bridget J, ‘Taxation as a Site of Memory: Exemptions, Universities, and the Legacy of Slavery’ [2020] SMU Law Review Forum (forthcoming)
Abstract: Many universities around the United States are attempting to grapple with their direct and indirect involvement with the institution of slavery. Lolita Buckner Inniss’s book The Princeton Fugitive Slave: the Trials of James Collins Johnson (2019) enters directly into the conversation taking place on university campuses and nation-wide about what responsibilities institutions have to acknowledge their past and to create racially inclusive campuses in the twenty-first century. Because most universities are tax-exempt, it is important to understand that their activities are indirectly subsidized by local, state and federal governments. The lens of tax law facilitates better understanding of universities’ unique historic role in American economic activity as well as contemporary arguments about their obligations to workers and community constituents during the COVID-19 crisis.

Curtis, Richard, ‘Eat, Drink, Be Merry’ (2020) 186(4752) Taxation 11–13
Abstract: Reports on Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s proposals of 8 July 2020 to stimulate employment and growth. Notes the job retention bonus for furloughed workers and kickstarter scheme for young persons, restaurant meal discount, reduced VAT rate on hospitality, and reduced stamp duty land tax on homes.

‘Cyprus: Tax Measures to Support Local Businesses during Covid-19 Crisis.’ [2020] Lawyer (Online Edition) 1
Abstract: The article reports that Cyprus Government have announced a number of tax measure in an attempt to support local businesses and economy to overcome the crisis related to the effect of COVID-19 pandemic. It also mentions that the tax measures are yet to be finalized and submitted for the Parliament’s approval.

Davis, Noel, ‘Superannuation Coronavirus Legislation’ (2020) 31(8) Australian Superannuation Law Bulletin 148–149
Abstract: As part of the Commonwealth Government’s economic response to assist people who are economically affected by the coronavirus, legislation has been passed to allow them to withdraw up to $10,000 from their superannuation fund or funds in the 2019/20 financial year and up to another $10,000 in the 2020/21 financial year. Those amounts are received tax free.

Doran, Nigel, ‘Negative Earnings: How Wide Is Their Scope?’ (2020) 1497 Tax Journal 13–15
Abstract: Discusses whether employees who have to forfeit remuneration, or voluntarily pay part back to prevent the employer’s insolvency, in the context of the coronavirus pandemic, could qualify for tax relief. Examines the possibility that taxable earnings could be negative.

Du Preez, Hanneke and Keamogetswe Molebalwa, ‘Lessons from History Predicting a Possible Tax Revolt in South Africa’ (2021) 54(1) De Jure 35–53
Abstract: South Africa is experiencing harsh economic circumstances, which negatively affects the economic environment of its citizens. Literature shows that historical tax resistance or tax revolts were mostly sparked by citizens burdened by their economic living conditions. South Africans’ disgruntlement has been voiced in many ways, from resistance to E-tolls to increasing numbers of violent service protests. This article explores the economic factors present in three historical tax revolts to assess the possibility of tax resistance and/or a tax revolt in South Africa. The three historical tax revolts were identified through a purposive selection process. A systematic review was then followed to identify the economic factors present in each historical tax revolt. Finally, the economic factors deduced from the historical tax revolts were applied to the current economic situation in South Africa. The findings are that all the economic factors identified from history are currently present in South Africa, indicating the imminent possibility of a tax revolt. Whilst previous research has focused mainly on explaining past events, this article attempts to anticipate and prevent a future event. The contribution of this article is thus to underline possible economic factors that may lead to tax resistance and/or a tax revolt in South Africa. The aftermath of COVID-19 may further worsen the current economic situation, especially with the exacerbation of the already high unemployment rate that may just be a tipping point for a possible tax revolt.

Edet Jr, Bassey, ‘Review of the Nigerian Tax Policy’s Impact on the Finance Act 2019’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper No ID 3614532, 30 May 2020)
Abstract: Every government is desirous of expanding its tax net, increasing revenue and creating a business ambience that will enhance business growth and enthrall investors. The question of how government policies should be structured to tackle excessive expenses, source for funds to meet these needs and properly manage resources are problems governments always attempt to remedy. For a long time, companies in Nigeria groaned about the underlying issues that troubled the tax system which in turn affected the ease of doing business. The tax laws seemed divorced from the societal changes that were occurring and the government in reaction, started by reviewing its Tax policy and subsequently amended its Tax Laws. This paper assesses how the Nigerian Tax Policy of 2017 has influenced and impacted certain aspects of the Finance Act of 2019, especially in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic. It also addresses issues bordering on the legal status of the policy, multiple taxation and enforcement of the policy. Finally, it canvases arguments for the policy to be rooted in the Constitution; however this is insuperable without the amendment of the Constitution. If done, it’s imagined that it will address the issue of the taxing powers including provisions for enforcement and deliberate internalization of taxation principles for the regulation of a healthy economy and achieving an effective tax administration. The author however applauds the reforms certain to impact Nigeria’s digital economic climate.

Feuer, Albert, ‘How the CARES Act Takes Care of an Individual’s Savings and Retirement Benefits’ (2020) 48 Tax Management Compensation Planning Journal 110
Abstract: The CARES Act forgives federal student loan payments with due dates between March 27, 2020 and September 30, 2020 and suspends the minimum required distribution rules for distributions otherwise due during the 2020 calendar year. The CARES Act also provides cash flow relief for qualified individuals with savings and retirement benefits by enhancing provisions for direct loans and indirect loans (repayable distributions) of such benefits. Guidance is needed to address at least six major issues. Who are qualified individuals, and how may they may be determined? What notices are required pertaining to the enhanced loan provisions, and to the enhanced distribution provisions? What is the DOL position with respect to fiduciary responsibility requirements pertaining to the enhanced direct and to the indirect loan provisions? Must plans defer loan payment due dates by qualified individuals for due dates between March 27 and December 31, 2020 in the same manner as IRS Notice 2020-23 requires plans to do so for all participants and beneficiaries for due dates between April 1 and July 14, 2020 How do plans determine the new amortization schedule for those deferring such payments? Must plan administrators give qualified individuals the right to avoid withholding on the enhanced distributions that the Act calls coronavirus-related distributions in the same manner that plan administrators must do so for all participants and beneficiaries on the distributions that would be 2020 required minimum distributions, absent the CARES Act? May qualified individuals repay all or only some coronavirus-related distributions within three years to an eligible retirement plan? The longer this guidance is delayed, particularly with respect to the definition and the determination of a qualified individual, the longer will the relief to individuals needing such relief be delayed and the longer will those individuals be unaware of the available relief.

Feuer, Albert, ‘Proposed Technical Corrections for Cash-Flow Relief Provisions of the Cares Act for Individuals with Savings or Retirement Benefits’ (2020) 48 Tax Management Compensation Planning Journal 135
Abstract: The CARES Act provides cash-flow relief for individuals who want to access their savings and retirement plan benefits without adverse tax consequences. There are significant outstanding issues with those provisions. The article discusses and proposes technical corrections to address three such issues.• Is there a single certification procedure to determine who is eligible to access their own savings and retirement benefits? The HEROES Act, the multi-trillion-dollar proposal to supplement the CARES Act that the House of Representatives approved in mid-May, addresses this issue differently than both the IRS guidance and the article’s proposal. • Are those eligible to so obtain their own benefits defined sufficiently broadly? The HEROES Act broadens the eligibility for the Covid-19 enhanced family and medical care leave relief. The Act does not address the far narrower CARES Act eligibility criteria for individuals who wish to access their own savings and retirement benefits. • Is there an unambiguous and intuitive method to determine the new amortization schedule for an eligible individual who wishes to take advantage of the CARE Act deferral of 2020 due dates for plan loans? The HEROES Act, again, does not address this issue.The article also proposes a state law change to prevent adverse state and local personal income tax consequences for plans, participants, and beneficiaries who wish to take advantage of the cash-flow relief of the CARES Act to access their own savings and retirement benefits. For example, the CARES Act permits in-service distributions that would otherwise cause savings and retirement plans to lose their tax-exemption. State and local tax laws that are not coupled with the Internal Revenue Code may tax plans that decide to provide such cash-flow relief, and also prevent participants and beneficiaries from deferring tax on their plan benefits. The article therefore presents a technical correction to state and local personal income tax laws that conformed to the Code before the enactment of the CARES Act, such as those of New York State, to assure that those laws conform to the Code provisions changed by these relief provisions and only those provisions.

Feuer, Albert, ‘What Savings and Retirement Plans May and Must Do to Facilitate COVID-19 Loan Relief’ (2020) 61 Tax Management Memorandum 171–174
Abstract: Plan administrators may permit participants and beneficiaries to access their own plan benefits to address their cash-flow problems without adverse tax consequences with more favorable plan loan policies. These policies are not limited to the CARES Act provisions permitting ‘qualified individuals’ to obtain more generous loans and giving those individuals one-year deferrals of loan due dates. Loan repayment relief and loan percentage increases will provide more vital COVID-19 relief than maximum loan amount increases because most plan accounts are substantially below the current $50,000 loan maximum.Plan administrators may help all their participants and beneficiaries by choosing to make loans available, having generous cure period for loan payment default, and deferring loan dues dates for employees on furloughs. They must also defer all loan dates between March 27, 2020 and July 14, 2020 until July 15, 2020. Finally, an individual whose outstanding plan loans were an offset against the individual’s benefits following the termination of employment may avoid taxation on such a deemed distribution by contributing such amount to another plan or individual retirement arrangement before the individual files her or his federal income tax return for the tax year of the distribution.

Fisher, Hannah, ‘Getting Down to Brass Tax: Why Courts Should Use Equitable Tolling to Help Taxpayer-Petitioners Impacted by COVID-19’ [2021] University of Chicago Legal Forum (forthcoming)
Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic caused some of the sharpest rises in American unemployment and poverty seen in a generation. This left people with less money in their pockets, but also less time and access to resources to diligently pursue their legal rights and remedies. Congress responded by providing some financial aid via stimulus packages. But without accompanying procedural relief from various filing deadlines, many will face financial liabilities to the government they otherwise might not, particularly in the tax context. This Comment advocates for greater flexibility when taxpayer-petitioners miss filing deadlines due to COVID-19-related hardships. I argue that when time limits in the tax context can properly be considered non-jurisdictional claims-processing rules, courts can rely on precedent from other bodies of law to expand the use of equitable tolling, limited by a modified financial disability standard.

Gallemore, John, Stephan Hollander and Martin Jacob, ‘Who CARES? Evidence on the Corporate Tax Provisions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act from SEC Filings’ (Becker Friedman Institute for Economics Working Paper No 2020–81, June 2020)
Abstract: We use U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings to provide initial large-sample evidence regarding utilization of corporate tax provisions by U.S. firms under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES). These tax provisions were intended to provide firms immediate liquidity to prevent widespread bankruptcies and layoffs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, critics have argued that the provisions were poorly targeted and amounted to ‘giveaways’ for shareholders of large corporations. We find that 38 percent of firms discuss at least one of the CARES tax provisions in their SEC filings, a result primarily attributable to the net operating loss (NOL) carryback provision. Firms experiencing lower stock returns during the COVID-19 outbreak are more likely to discuss CARES tax provisions, but not firms in states or industry sectors exhibiting large increases in unemployment. Further, we find a higher likelihood of tax provision discussions for firms with pre-pandemic losses and higher financial leverage. Finally, we document some evidence that firms facing potential reputational or political costs from discussing these tax provisions may have avoided doing so. Our analyses suggest that tax provisions under CARES were not material for most publicly-traded U.S. firms, were not likelier to benefit firms in greater need of liquidity during the pandemic, and that some firms perceived that disclosing benefits would be costly. These findings are important for policymakers as they consider additional economic relief for U.S. corporations while the coronavirus pandemic lingers.

Gamage, David and Darien Shanske, ‘States Should Consider Partial Wealth Tax Reforms’ [2020] (18 May) Tax Notes State 859
Abstract: This essay argues that, if the federal government fails to act sufficiently regarding the COVID-19 budget crisis, states should consider either real property surtaxes on their wealthiest residents or partial deemed realization of the unrealized capital gains of the very wealthy.

Haines, Anjana, ‘MNEs to Shift Burden of COVID-19 Litigation to Law Firms’ [2020] (28 May) International Tax Review 1–4
Abstract: Law firms globally must prepare for a wave of COVID-created litigation work over the next three months as more than 400 senior counsel and business executives say they are outsourcing the burden. A comprehensive survey conducted by Euromoney’s Legal Media Group (LMG), which includes ITR, IFLR, MIP and Euromoney Thought Leadership Consulting, found that in-house legal and tax departments will ask their advisors to tackle the problems created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hall, Kevin and Punnit Vyas, ‘Wedding Bells’ (2020) 186(4761) Taxation 18–19
Abstract: Considers the VAT issues arising from the different elements in a wedding package, looking at whether the package comprises single or multiple supplies, room hire, and the scope and application of the temporary VAT change introduced as part of the response to the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Harpaz, Assaf, ‘Tax Policy and COVID-19: An Argument for Targeted Crisis Relief’ [2021] Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy (forthcoming)
Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic caused a sharp global economic decline. The U.S. government responded to the downturn with record fiscal legislation totaling over $5 trillion, which includes considerable tax relief. Most notably, the U.S. government distributed over $800 billion in three rounds of advanced refundable tax credits (known as recovery rebates, or stimulus checks) to most households. Tax relief has been unprecedented in scale but has often been the product of political circumstances rather than theorized conception. Tax relief thus remains largely undertheorized and politically motivated.This Article examines the U.S. tax policy response to the COVID-19 crisis, focusing on recovery rebates for individuals. It evaluates considerations for reforming tax relief and proposes several changes for future crises. First, the Article recommends targeting credits towards low-income households. This should be accomplished by decreasing phase out thresholds and increasing credit amounts. Second, the Article recommends targeting credits towards households which lost income or whose income did not substantially increase. This should be accomplished by implementing a recapture (repayment) requirement at the end of the tax year from households whose income increased beyond the phase out threshold, subject to a safe harbor. These proposals increase vertical equity and effectiveness, allow increased aid to those who suffered the most and enhance economic stimulus. Additionally, the Article explores arguments for universal benefits and recurring payments. It thereby examines the widely publicized debate on fiscal response to COVID-19 and suggests meaningful improvements to tax policy response for future crises.

Holderness, Hayes, ‘Changing Lanes: Tax Relief for Commuters’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper No ID 3705646, 5 October 2020)
Abstract: Tax law reaches all parts of life, and societal views about life activities often affect how the law is applied. As those societal views change, then, application of the law should be expected to change in turn. This Essay highlights changing societal views about commuting, particularly as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, to demonstrate how even long-standing positions under the tax law can be quickly uprooted. Specifically, as working from home becomes standard, taxpayers should be afforded tax relief when required to commute into the workplace, despite the fact that the tax law traditionally has rejected such relief.

Ismail, Abdiqani, ‘Tax Collections in Times of Ongoing Pandemic in Kenya: Challenges and Policy Options’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper No ID 3639018, Social Science Research Network, 30 June 2020)
Abstract: COVID-19 pandemic is presenting unprecedented crisis, primarily of health and human tragedy but has also far reaching economic ramification. The crisis is disrupting millions of people’s livelihood, with severe impact on business and especially small and informal businesses. Across the Globe governments are taking decisive actions to protect their economies and affected sectors. One such sector that is likely to be disrupted is the process of tax collection and administration. Although we are in the early stages of the potential impact, tax agencies must focus and prioritize their response in order to make the most of the limited time and resources available. To address these needs and help inform the responses, this paper presents - An analysis of COVID-19 impacts on the collection of various forms of taxes, in which the paper postulates that although reduction of tax collected is to be expected across the board, income tax and corporate tax are likely to be hit hard due to combination of factors such as job losses, pay reduction and filing of net losses. - Challenges expected to be faced by the tax agency in collecting tax during ongoing pandemics, the paper argues that tax agencies are likely to encounter several challenges including reduction in tax compliance, disruption to tax filing schedules, reduction in the ability to collect tax and complications arising out of adopting to the government economic stimulus. - A framework for policy response by the tax agency and the government to mitigate the challenges. These Policy actions are drawn from a global scan of interventions implemented by various agencies and governments. The suggested responses include increase tax payer assistance, clear communication and making use of digital platforms. The paper concludes by sending clear message that tax agencies and government needs to double down their efforts to safeguard their tax base and help their tax payers cope with the uncertainties brought by the current pandemic.

‘Jersey Amends Economic Substance Rules to Support Businesses Hit by Covid-19.’ [2020] (8 April) Lawyer (Online Edition) 1
Abstract: The article informs that authorities in Jersey have amended its rules around economic substance to support businesses hit by Covid-19 pandemic. It mentions that jurisdiction has confirmed the circumstances under which it will not determine under Article 6, Taxation Law 2019 that a company has failed the economic substance test.

Kan, Samuel, ‘Divorce and the Collapse of the Three-Legged Stool: Setting Servicemembers Up for Success in the Age of BRS and COVID-19’ (2020) 66(2) Wayne Law Review (forthcoming)
Abstract: Over the past few years, many monumental tax and benefit law changes have created a need to re-evaluate the problem of divorce and retirement in the military community. This need has become especially vital, because the military has transitioned from the legacy retirement system to the Blended Retirement System (BRS). To a certain degree, this retirement model shifts a portion of the financial risk to servicemembers and their family members as they will need to make their own investment decisions in an uncertain economic market to protect assets in their defined contribution plans. In addition, significant threats to the overall economy posed by disasters such as the exponential spread of the Novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic have created increasing unemployment and the need to rely more heavily on health care and Social Security support structures.This article argues that military marriage partners need to learn to function efficiently within this new and more fragile economic paradigm to ensure that their families are financially self-sufficient even if the partners divorce. In addition, as some servicemembers may fail to take action to provide for their intended surviving beneficiaries in the event of their divorce and subsequent death, the federal government should take action to effectuate the likely intent of these servicemembers at the time of their death. Furthermore, the federal government should take action to increase the economic sustainability of Social Security, which military marriage partners may need to rely upon after divorce as many may struggle financially to support separate households.

Kaywood, Sam K, ‘Taxable Acquisitions of Foreign Corporations During a Pandemic (of Change)’ (2021) 47(5) International Tax Journal 7–24

Kess, Sidney, ‘First Look at the CARES Act’s Provisions for Tax Relief’ (2020) 90(4) CPA Journal 8–9
Abstract: The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (H.R. 748), signed into law on March 27, 2020, is a $2.2 trillion package enacted to help individuals and businesses get through the health and economic crisis triggered by the coronavirus pandemic. Rebate Checks for Individuals Rebate checks are advance payments of a new refundable tax credit [Internal Revenue Code (IRC) section 6428]. These rebate checks for individuals with adjusted gross income (AGI) below set amounts are being paid via the IRS. [Extracted from the article]

Klug, Heinz, ‘Time for a Social Solidarity Tax?’ (University of Wisconsin Legal Studies Research Paper No 1604, Social Science Research Network, 17 August 2020)
Abstract: Covid-19 is transforming the world, but we do not yet know how much. Across the globe the pandemic has exposed and exacerbated social and economic problems. From medical systems to livelihoods, Covid-19 is revealing how inequality impacts death rates, job losses, education, and housing. In many societies, including the United States, it has also exposed how these gross inequalities fall along racial and ethnic lines, with devastating impacts on marginal individuals, poor and minority communities. This article looks back at the comparative historical experience of wealth taxes and capital levies in Europe and Asia to put the present calls for wealth taxes in perspective and to suggest that a Social Solidarity Tax designed with this history as a guide may be necessary to address the coming economic catastrophe.

Kusumo, Bambang Ali, ‘Tax Law Enforcement in the Pandemic Time COVID 19’ (Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Technology, Education, and Social Science (ICTESS) 2020, 2021) 677–687
Abstract: Legal sanctions in the field of taxation consist of administrative sanctions and criminal sanctions, but in their implementation administrative sanctions are prioritized, considering that administrative sanctions are more profitable, because the time required is not too long and money can immediately enter the state treasury, but the weakness is that there is a lack of a good deterrent effect. against the perpetrator and potential perpetrator. In law enforcement, legal sanctions may not be enforced or their enforcement is postponed due to unavoidable disasters such as during the Covid 19 pandemic.

Lind, Yvette, ‘Sweden and Denmark Incorporate Anti-Tax-Avoidance Rules into Very Different COVID-19 Responses’ (2020) 98(10) Tax Notes International 1127–1133
Abstract: After initially focusing on the medical aspects of the coronavirus, many jurisdictions have begun instituting economic measures to mitigate the economic consequences of the pandemic and prepare for the financial crisis that will unavoidably follow in its wake. Because these solutions are still in their infancy, states have generally focused on short-term solutions such as offering various financial support packages to both individuals and companies for 2020 and 2021. This paper concerns EU state aid packages implemented in Sweden and Denmark. Despite being closely connected in both geography and law, with their legal systems sharing many important characteristics, the two member states have taken different approaches to the pandemic. Denmark was among the first states to close both its borders and its society, with the government implementing far-reaching protocols on social distancing. Meanwhile, Sweden left its borders and society open and relied on its citizens’ common sense to limit transmission of the coronavirus. This explains why Denmark had to enact various state aid measures relatively early while Sweden is still processing its economic response. Denmark has also instituted state aid measures that are more generous and far-reaching than those that have been proposed by the Swedish government (at least thus far). However, despite the differences between the two states, both have decided to implement anti-tax-evasion agendas.The two states have reacted differently in terms of economic support measures, in part because of the conflicting approaches to social distancing. The paper focuses on these differing approaches to state aid, particularly measures that the governments provide through the tax system. The highly debated Danish decision to exclude tax-evading companies from COVID-19 aid — a move that Sweden and several other states followed — is given particular attention. The paper concludes that both states must take steps to more clearly delineate their rules excluding tax-evading companies from COVID-19 aid to ensure that these provisions remain applicable and adhere to the principle of legal certainty.

Lipman, Francine J, Nicholas A Mirkay and Palma Joy Strand, ‘U.S. Tax Systems Need Anti-Racist Restructuring’ (2020) 168(5) Tax Notes Fed/State 855–862
Abstract: #BlackTaxpayersMatterThe world has witnessed the brutal suffocation of George Floyd on a concrete sidewalk in Minneapolis. While this is but one more example of centuries of relentless violence against Black people, many are hoping that this tragic death might be a catalyst for meaningful change. Around the world, rallies, marches, and vigils have filled public spaces to call out institutional racism and demand systemic change. The rage, despair, exhaustion, and frustration with targeted discrimination has not only permeated cities and streets, but racism is being condemned at kitchen tables, by businesses, in social media, and from groups as sweeping as Sesame Street, KPop fans, and NASCAR. People across the globe are raising their voices and insisting that something be done to stop the routine ruin of Black lives.Many are looking to Black leaders in every discipline, including finance, economics, and tax, and asking what they can do to help. And Black leaders — once again, after centuries of explaining, exposing, discussing, writing, speaking, preaching, demanding, and demonstrating that American institutions are implicitly and explicitly discriminatory and must fundamentally change — are providing thoughtful, cogent answers. They rise to the challenge again and again, hoping that this horrific racist episode will be different from countless previous episodes. They call for a transcendent time of tangible change. However, they are rightfully saying that this is not their burden to bear, and that those with the privileged status of race, income, wealth, and platforms must step up, move forward, and finally do something. We have heard from many of our Black and brown colleagues that they are ‘sick and tired of being sick and tired.’As writers, we understand the power of words. But it is also true that actions speak louder than words. As Maya Angelou said so poetically, ‘When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.’ (Emphasis added.) What can we as tax professionals, scholars, and advocates do to show our commitment to racial justice?First, we must recognize that tax injustice is economic injustice, which leads directly to income and wealth inequality; pervasive poverty; and the compromised health, welfare, and safety of communities of color. The immorally high and persistent 32 percent rate of poverty for Black children and the 380 percent higher death rate of Black individuals from COVID-19 as compared with their white counterparts are real-world problems that can be remedied. However, real remedies will require all hands on deck, because these issues are long-standing systemic harms created and perpetuated by federal, state, and local institutions over the last 400 years.This article will help you think more critically about these issues. It discusses the racist history of U.S. tax systems, prescribes anti-racist action items, and provides a wealth of referenced readable resources.

Marr, Emma, ‘Tax in the Time of COVID-19’ [2020] (May) New Zealand Law Journal 122, 127
Abstract: As I write this, we are preparing to emerge blinking from lockdown, or Alert Level 4, into the sunlight of Alert Level 3. The first meaningful tax related announcement made in relation to COVID-19 happened early March 2020. That seems like a lifetime ago. Our tax laws change quickly and often, but the Government has outdone itself recently. Deadlines have been extended, promises to waive penalties have been made and, in the blink of an eye, the Government has decided to make wholesale reforms to the loss carry-forward rules, something businesses and tax practitioners have been requesting for years.

Miller, David S and Sean Webb, ‘The Tax Provisions of the HEALS Act’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper No ID 3664120, 30 July 2020)
Abstract: This paper summarizes the tax proposals in the Health, Economic Assistance, Liability Protection and Schools Act (HEALS Act) introduced on July 27, 2020.

Mock, Rodney P and Kathryn Kisska-Schulze, ‘Saving the Nonessential with Radical Tax Policy’ (2021) 90(1) University of Cincinnati Law Review 197–258
Abstract: Under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, for-profit entities are distinguishable from tax-exempt entities in that they, among other factors, pursue profits, and enjoy unrestricted commercial activities. The COVID-19 lockdowns prevented commercial activity for numerous for-profit small businesses. For the first time in United States history, a distinction was made between ‘essential’ and ‘nonessential’ businesses. Such distinction is historically absent in both legal scholarship and tax law; instead, it is a product of governmental reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic. Via executive order, nonessential businesses were characterized as being trivial to the fabric of society, and thus shuttered, while essential businesses were permitted to remain operational with little, if any, interruption. Essential business’ profits have since amassed from such consolidation. To date, there have been no proposals at the state or federal levels that adequately address the monumental financial and social impact that mandated lockdowns have had on small businesses, which employ approximately 47.5% of the private workforce. This article suggests that restructuring and preserving those businesses most harmed by the pandemic serves an overriding public interest, and radical societal events require radical tax policy initiatives. As such, this Article proposes that nonessential businesses negatively impacted by pandemic closures should be granted temporary tax-exempt status and treated in a similar manner to non-profit organizations throughout their economic recovery period.

Morawski, Wojciech and Alicja Sarna, ‘To Be a Polish Taxpayer, Tax Clerk, and Tax Judge in the Era of COVID19’ in Frydrych-Depka, Anna, Maciej Serowaniec and Zbigniew Witkowski (eds), Pandemic Poland: Impacts of Covid-19 on Polish Law (Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2021) 195
Abstract: This paper deals with the problem of the changing of the Polish tax law during the coronavirus pandemic. The authors present the problems involved in the functioning of taxpayers, the tax administration and administrative courts, and the legal solution to these problems. In the opinion of the authors, the changes in tax law related to the epidemic are temporary. The only lasting effect will be the acceleration of the computerization of the tax administration and the contact between taxpayers and the tax administration.

Morton, Elizabeth and Sarah Hinchliffe, ‘The Potential for the Unintentional Loss of Tax Losses in the COVID-19 Environment’ (2020) 23(5) Tax Specialist 210–223
Abstract: In the wake of the unprecedented environment arising from the COVID-19 crisis, it is likely that we will begin to see an increase in companies seeking to utilise the newly enacted similar business test (SiBT). The authors specifically consider the community-minded business response through production lines ‘hacks’. A number of business pivots publicised in the COVID-19 environment are examined to consider whether they stretch the SiBT beyond its scope, resulting in the potential loss of tax losses. In doing so, the authors reflect on how COVID-19 leads to established businesses facing similar limitations as start-up businesses, the likelihood of numerous pivots being required to get back on economic track and the anti-avoidance considerations that the appearance of such pivots create. It is concluded that COVID-19 creates a particular need to capture in sufficient detail these unusual activities to support any claim of tax losses.

Mumford, Ann, ‘Edward Colston and the Coronavirus: A Reflection on Narratives of Taxation in Taxing Times’ (2021) 32(1) King’s Law Journal 157–167

Nevius, Alistair M, ‘American Rescue Plan Act Passes with Many Tax Components’ [2021] (11 March) Journal of Accountantcy_
_Abstract: The House of Representatives passed the American Rescue Plan Act, H.R. 1319, on Wednesday by a vote of 220–211. It now goes to President Joe Biden for his signature. He is expected to sign it quickly. H.R. 1319 was first passed by the House on Feb. 27. The Senate made several amendments and passed its version of the bill on March 6. The bill then came back to the House for a final vote on Wednesday. Among the act’s many provisions are several tax items. Most of the tax provisions that were in the House version of the bill were unchanged in the Senate’s version, but the tax treatment of 2020 unemployment benefits, the phaseout ranges for economic impact payments, and the treatment of student loan debt forgiveness were changed by the Senate.

Nevius, Alistair M, ‘Tax Provisions in the Year-End Coronavirus Relief Act’ [2021] (March) The Tax Adviser 1–8
Abstract: The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, P.L. 116-260, the omnibus spending and coronavirus relief bill enacted in December, included many tax provisions, including the extension of various expiring provisions, extensions and expansions of certain earlier pandemic tax relief provisions, and much more. Among its general tax provisions, the act temporarily (through 2022) allows 100% deductibility of certain business meal expenses, extends the $300 charitable contribution deduction for nonitemizers, and enacts various disaster tax relief provisions.

Newman, Joel S, ‘Is Self-Quarantining a Deductible Medical Expense?’ [2020] (Spring) University of Illinois Law Review Online 117–124
Abstract: Self-quarantining expenses are probably not a deductible medical expense, under current law. I propose a statutory amendment to make them deductible under IRC section 213, provided:1) they are required by the CDC or a comparable governmental authority;2) they are limited to $200 per day for 14 days;3) there is no reasonable alternative to moving out of the taxpayer’s home; and4) the place of quarantine is within 25 miles of taxpayer’s principal residence.

Nogueira, Pinto and João Félix, ‘Tax Reactions to the SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 Pandemic in Portugal’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper ID 3779994, Social Science Research Network, 5 February 2021)
Abstract: This study is focused on the tax measures that have been enacted in Portugal, following the health and economic crisis created by the SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 pandemic. First, it aims at comprehensively characterizing the measures enacted, structuring them by thematic clusters, enabling the reader to understand the concrete impact of the significant array of legislation and administrative guidance does not allow. Second, it aims to critically assess the measures adopted and uncover the rationale behind their adoption. The study allowed us to conclude that the tax system was not the priority weapon used by the government to react to the pandemic. Nevertheless, many measures have been enacted, most of them with a non-substantial nature and related to the postponement of deadlines for the submission of tax returns or for payments of taxes due.A careful review of the measures revealed that some areas could have been better dealt with, in order to increase legal certainty of the addresses of the measures. Moreover, the connection between some measures and the pandemic is not completely clear, which raises suspicion on the real reasons behind the adoption of the rules.The same careful review has shown that many governmental actions correspond to best practices that should not only be praised but also be considered as examples to be followed by other countries. This is namely the case of the care in providing correct, easy-to-follow guidance to taxpayers on the impact of the measures that have been adopted.All in all, these surgical tax measures adopted seem to be able to avoid further commercial and financial disruptions in the economy, avoiding situations of bankruptcy or avoidable hardships for taxpayers which would have only added more disruption to the one that the SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 inevitably introduced.

O’Hare, Robert and Jefferson VanderWolk, ‘Digitalisation: Where Are We Headed?’ (2020) 1498 Tax Journal 22–24
Abstract: Examines the implications of the coronavirus pandemic, Brexit and the quest for trade agreements for the UK digital services tax. Considers progress made so far by the OECD towards digital services taxation, and the US call for a pause.

Ooi, Vincent, ‘Revisiting the Automation Tax Debate in Light of Covid-19 and Resulting Structural Unemployment’ (3169, July 2020)
Abstract: As lockdowns ease around the globe and businesses reopen, the threat of jobs being automated by machines and workers being displaced as a result has significantly increased. Businesses must keep the number of workers on site to a minimum to comply with safe distancing measures. Under these constraints while social distancing remains the norm, automation might be the way forward for companies that still want to continue production while minimising human contact. The threat of a workforce being replaced by robots and automation, a threat that has already alarmed the labour movement, is heightened with Covid-19. There will be considerable layoffs.

Ooi, Vincent, ‘Tax Implications of COVID-19 in Singapore’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper No ID 3641349, 31 July 2020)
Abstract: As taxpayers in Singapore deal with a radically changed business environment due to COVID-19, there is a need to make non-routine decisions quickly. These decisions can have significant tax implications, which will likely manifest themselves later as the economy recovers. It is critical for taxpayers to understand the tax consequences of their decisions, even as they focus on issues of immediate survival. While the majority of the relevant tax principles are not new, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in the need to apply these existing principles to new situations and increased the frequency of certain activities that may have been uncommon prior to the pandemic. Business decisions undertaken during the COVID-19 pandemic will affect the whole range of taxes, including income tax, goods and services tax, stamp duties and property tax. The importance of understanding the tax consequences of these non-routine decisions and of maintaining contemporaneous documentation cannot be overstated.

Opinio Juris in Comparatione (2020) Special Issue: Impact of Coronavirus Emergency - Section 3: Tax Law Perić, Renata and Emina Jerković, ‘The Impact of Covid-19 on Tax Administration in the Republic of Croatia’ (2021) 5(EU 2021 – The Future of the EU in and After the Pandemic) EU and Comparative Law Issues and Challenges Series (ECLIC) 659–687
Abstract: The crisis and special measures caused by the Covid-19 virus pandemic have greatly disrupted the business and survival of small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as larger industries. The state and its institutions were forced to take certain measures to facilitate the survival and continuation of business, and to save jobs for entrepreneurs and their employees. The Tax Administration is a state institution whose measures directly affect every business. So it was among the first to take some measures, i.e. to adjust its business and tax collection to the new situation. This paper discusses the first measures introduced, those from March and April 2020. It discusses the deferral or installment payment of due and deferred tax liabilities. The measure of deferral, installment payment of tax liability, is certainly the most important and most popular measure among taxpayers. It is explained how tax measures during a pandemic should look according to the recommendations of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). We explain other measures that have been introduced to facilitate business. These are the extension of the deadline for filing income tax, the exemption from VAT, the enforcement procedure and the payment of the annual tax rate. Despite the measures taken so far, it is important to emphasize that the Covid-19 pandemic is still ongoing, and that according to some experts, a real crisis with visible consequences of the pandemic is still to be expected. Accordingly, it is to be expected that the current measures are very likely to be further changed, upgraded and adjusted as the situation changes. We consider it important to note that the framework of this paper does not allow a detailed analysis and that we are forced to limit ourselves exclusively to some aspects of the issue at hand.

Pirlot, Alice, Richard Collier and John Vella, ‘Tax Policy and the COVID-19 Crisis’ (2020) 48(8/9) _Intertax_
Abstract: This article provides some preliminary thoughts on tax policy and the COVID-19 crisis. In the first part, it discusses fiscal measures available to policymakers in response to the COVID-19 crisis. The role of taxation will evolve over the different phases of the pandemic: measures have already been adopted to respond to the crisis in the short-term, but questions remain as to the types of measures that should be adopted in the medium and longer-term. In the second part, this article discusses the current and possible future effects of the pandemic on international tax policy.

Radvan, Michal and Sandra Papavasilevská, ‘Abolition of Tax on Acquisition of Immovable Property: A Tool to Suppress the Negative Consequences of COVID-19 or a Politicum?’ (2021) 5(2) Public Governance, Administration and Finances Law Review 45–57
Abstract: The tax on acquisition of immovable property was abolished on September 26, 2020 in the Czech Republic. One of the reasons mentioned in the explanatory report to the Act was the statement that the abolition deals with the effects of this virus on society. The main aim of the article is to answer the question of whether the abolition of the tax on acquisition of immovable property is a tool to suppress the negative consequences of COVID-19 or a politicum. To get the answer, it is necessary to shortly describe the tax on acquisition of immovable property and its structural components and make a basic comparison with the other EU Member States. We also summarise the pros and cons of the tax and related findings of the Constitutional Court. As the property transfer tax is connected with the income tax and there were several amendments in the proposal, it is needed to analyse these changes. Based on the research, it is possible to conclude that the abolition of the tax on acquisition of immovable property is definitely not a tool to suppress the negative consequences of COVID-19; it is just a politicum: political parties believe that the abolition of the transfer tax brings them more voices in the elections.

Robson, Jennifer and Saul Schwartz, ‘Policy Forum: Should the Canada Revenue Agency Also Be a Social Benefits Agency?’ (2021) 69(1) Canadian Tax Journal 87–98
Abstract: The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) plays an important role in the delivery of benefits to Canadians, but should that role be expanded? The speed and ease with which several new income benefits were launched by the CRA during the COVID-19 pandemic have prompted the question of whether the agency should take on a much larger role as a social benefits agency, in addition to tax collector. We review the arguments for and against, noting important weaknesses that already impair the CRA’s current role in benefit delivery and that would be exacerbated in an expanded role. On balance, we conclude that an expanded role is not the better choice. We suggest that the CRA might instead enhance one of its strengths—collecting and sharing information—so that other agencies can more effectively administer benefits not directly tied to the tax system.

Ryznar, Margaret, ‘Emergency Funds in the Wake of the Coronavirus’ (2020) 96(1) Tax Notes State 65–66
Abstract: The CARES Act targeting the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic allows taxpayers to withdraw up to $100,000 from their retirement savings, such as section 401(k) plans, without the typical 10% penalty for early withdrawal. However, retirement accounts do not make for ideal emergency funds. This Article therefore advocates that future legislation should incentivize separate savings funds.

Ryznar, Margaret, ‘Evaluating Proposed Deductions for the COVID-19 Pandemic’ (2020) 96(12) Tax Notes State 1469–1471
Abstract: This article examines two tax proposals recently made by U.S. government leaders in response to the coronavirus pandemic: that state and local tax deduction caps should be lifted and that entertainment expenses should again be deductible.

Ryznar, Margaret, ‘Extending the Charitable Deduction Beyond the Covid-19 Pandemic’ (2020) 167(3) Tax Notes Federal 463–464
Abstract: While the importance of the charitable deduction decreased in the 2017 tax reform, it has returned during the COVID-19 pandemic with the CARES Act. This Article lays out the reasons that the limited above-the-line charitable deduction authorized by Congress during the coronavirus pandemic should remain a permanent feature of U.S. tax law.

Semerá, Pavel, Michal Radvan and Lucie Semerádova, ‘Tax Fraud in Accommodation Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic in the Czech Republic’ (2021) 11(1) Centre for Analyses and Studies of Taxation SGH 23–31
Abstract: The situation around the COVID-19 pandemic is very serious worldwide. In addition to health problems, it also has many social and economic impacts. In our article, we have looked at the economic impact on the accommodation services sector. Despite repeated restrictions imposed by the government of the Czech Republic on this activity, there is speculation about violations of government measures. Our article aimed at identifying possible weaknesses in government measures and potential space for the emergence of a ‘grey economy’ segment in accommodation services during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Czech Republic. Our results show that there may be a tax evasion of 35.6% relating to entrepreneurs’ income. In addition, such a businessman receives a subsidy per unoccupied room and does not pay any occupational tax for accommodated guests. For natural persons who do not hire their premises on an ongoing basis, the tax evasion rate may be 10.5%, while still no charge on stay (tourist tax) is paid.

Shannonhouse, Sarah, ‘Quirks Spurred by COVID-19 Tax Relief’ [2020] (December) Tax Adviser 1–3
Abstract: The article focuses on new tax legislative, regulatory, and procedural guidance that’s been released associated with COVID-19. It mentions U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced extensive filing and payment relief in Notice 2020-23 for deadlines occurring between April 1-July 15, 2020. It also mentions clients needed to obtain their refunds quickly or perhaps because their economic impact payments were higher based on their 2019 tax returns.

Shanske, Darien, ‘How the States Can Tax Shifted Corporate Profits: An Application of Strategic Conformity’ [2020] Southern California Law Review (forthcoming)
Abstract: The combination of pandemic, recession and federal dysfunction has put severe fiscal strain on the states. Given the scale of the crisis and the essential nature of the services now being cut, it would be reasonable for states to contemplate inefficient – and even regressive – revenue-raising measures. Yet surely they should not start with such measures. They should start with making the efficient and progressive improvements to their revenue systems that they should have made anyway. Improving the taxation of the profits of multinational corporations - the topic of this Article - represents a reform that would be efficient, progressive and relatively straightforward to administer. Not only would such a reform thus represent good tax policy, but it would raise significant revenue. And, if substantial revenue, efficiency, progressivity and administrability are not sufficiently motivating, then I will also add that it would be particularly appropriate to make these changes during the pandemic so as to raise revenue from those best able to pay during the current crisis.To be sure, the argument that states can and should tax multinational corporations more has the whiff of paradox. After all, there is general consensus that no nation-state is currently taxing multinational corporations very effectively and, further, that subnational governments are in an even worse position to do so. This is because MNCs can exploit the mobility of capital even more easily between parts of the same country. Nevertheless, I will argue that the American states find themselves in a particularly strong position to do better at taxing MNCs and this is in part precisely because of the missteps made at the federal level. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (‘TCJA’), passed in December 2017, contained several provisions, including rules concerning Global Intangible Low-Taxed Income (or ‘GILTI’), that were meant to combat income stripping. The GILTI provision identifies foreign income likely to have been shifted out of the US and subjects it to US tax.In this Article, I argue that the states should and can tax GILTI income. The basic policy argument is simple: states should not miss a chance to protect their corporate tax bases. The amount of revenue at stake is not trivial; it could be as high as $15 billion/year for the states as a whole or the equivalent of a 30% boost in corporate tax collections.The basic legal argument is also simple: it cannot be the case – and it is not the case - that states need to take corporations at their word as to where their income is earned. If the states can make a reasonable argument that nominally foreign income has in fact been shifted out of the US, then their choices as to their tax system should be respected.This Article makes several other core arguments. First, the Article argues that returning to mandatory worldwide combination as a complete alternative to GILTI conformity would be preferable to GILTI conformity alone. Second, the Article argues that offering taxpayers a choice between GILTI conformity and worldwide combination is also preferable to GILTI conformity alone.Finally, this Article places all these issues in a larger framework of strategic conformity. As with GILTI, the states should look for other opportunities where they can take advantage of federal miscues while also advancing sound tax policy.

Strausfeld, Dave, ‘Offer-in-Compromise Scams Expected to Increase’ [2020] (December) Tax Adviser 1–4
Abstract: The article reports that U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) provide offer-in-compromise scams expected to increase. It mentions tax debt resolution businesses are legitimate, others cross ethical boundaries, harming vulnerable taxpayers. It also mentions problem will probably grow worse during the COVID-19 recession as a greater number of taxpayers struggle financially and face possible tax troubles.

‘Tax-Saving Opportunities for the Housing and Construction Industries’ [2020] (December) Tax Adviser 1–5
Abstract: The article focuses on Paycheck Protection Program loans, navigating the tax law changes in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and keeping their businesses moving forward despite significant challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic. It mentions tax-saving opportunities for the housing and construction industries and the research and development (R&D) credit may be second nature. It also mentions how tax preparers can claim tax benefits.

Taxation and the Social Contract in a Post-Pandemic Era: Domestic and International Dimensions (Symposium, jointly hosted by Afronomicslaw, the United Nations Development Programme (Africa) and the Centre for the Study of Economies of Africa, July 2020)
Abstract: This symposium addresses issues such as the low tax to GDP ratio in developing states, the broken social contract in these countries and the reforms needed to repair the social contract. The convener, Dr. Alexander Ezenaguin, accepting the invitation of Afronomicslaw to host the tax symposium, called upon tax practitioners, academics, policy experts, philosophers, administrators, to offer insights on the relationship between taxation and the social contract.
‘Unprecedented Opportunities in Gift Planning’ [2020] (December) Tax Adviser 1–6
Abstract: The article focuses on unprecedented opportunities in gift tax planning as interest rates and asset values affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and other current events. It mentions rates the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) uses to calculate minimum interest rates to apply to loans and the discount rate applied to remainder interests and life estates. It also mentions grantor retained annuity trust (GRAT) is an irrevocable trust and right to receive an annuity payment.

Weeks, Claire and Emma-Jane Weider, ‘The Statutory Residence Test and Covid-19’ [2020] (5) Private Client Business 279–284
Abstract: Discusses, with reference to the travel restrictions imposed in response to the coronavirus pandemic, the range of ‘exceptional circumstances’ in which time spent in the UK may be disregarded for the purposes of taxation and the statutory residence test under the Finance Act 2013 Sch.45. Reviews the status of HMRC guidance related to COVID-19, and gives practical examples of the limitations of the rules and guidance.

Willis, Mark, ‘Tax Credits and Coronavirus’ (2020) 276 Welfare Rights Bulletin 8–9
Abstract: Examines the option for claimants who are already in receipt of tax credits to remain in the tax credits system rather than claiming universal credit, and how claimants can reclaim their tax credits or challenge a decision to terminate tax credits. Notes changes to working tax credit entitlements due to the coronavirus concerning working hours and the childcare element, changes to income rules and the suspension of overpayment recovery.

Wrappe, Steven C and Marenglen Marku, ‘Transfer Pricing and the Pandemic Recession: What to Do about ItThe Tax Adviser (29 February 2021, 109–112)
Abstract: MNEs will need to reevaluate their pre-pandemic transfer-pricing approach based on an updated application of the arm’s-length principle and be prepared to defend changes in the approach and results.

Zelinsky, Edward A, ‘Coronavirus, Telecommuting, and the “Employer Convenience” Rule’ (2020) 95(13) State Tax Notes 1101
Abstract: New York’s ‘convenience of the employer’ doctrine overtaxes nonresident telecommuters on the days they work at their out-of-state homes. This doctrine was poor tax policy in normal times. It is particularly bad tax policy during the Covid-19 crisis, penalizing individuals who work at home.

Zelinsky, Edward A, ‘New York’s Ill-Advised Taxation of Nonresidents During COVID-19’ (Cardozo Legal Studies Research Paper No 614, 7 July 2020)
Abstract: For 2020, New York should tax neither the incomes of nonresident telecommuters nor the incomes of the volunteers who came from across the country to help New York confront the COVID-19 emergency.If New York will not act in this sensible fashion, Congress should. In the next round of coronavirus legislation, Congress can prohibit the states from taxing, for the duration of the coronavirus emergency, the incomes of nonresident telecommuters and out-of-state medical volunteers.

Zhang, Alex, ‘Pandemics, Paid Sick Leaves, and Tax Institutions’ (SSRN Scholarly Paper No ID 3729500, 20 July 2020)
Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic is currently ravaging the world, and the United States has been largely unsuccessful at containing the coronavirus. One long-standing policy failure stands out as having exacerbated the pandemic in our country: the lack of a national mandate of paid sick leaves, without which workers face financial and workplace-cultural pressures to attend work while sick, thus spreading the virus to their fellow employees and the public at large.This Article provides the blueprint for a national, subsidized mandate of paid sick leaves and two additional insights about our tax institutions as mechanisms of effectuating broader societal goals. It first justifies a paid-sick-leave mandate on the grounds of market failures (both cognitive biases and externalities) and workplace equality. It also argues for the need of subsidies in order to protect lower-income workers from unemployment risks imposed by a national mandate. Second, the Article critically assesses the current federal legislative approach utilized in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). The Article then proposes designing a national employer mandate of paid sick leaves funded by general-revenue business tax credits and providing partial wage replacement.This Article’s discussion of paid sick leaves yields two insights about our tax institutions. First, it questions the role of payroll taxes, which are highly regressive, impose burdens almost exclusively on labor, and are normatively unjustified when the spending funded by payroll taxes benefits the broader non-wage-earning public. Second, the Article reveals the malleability of tax institutions with respect to funding, administrability, and costs. These comparative advantages of tax institutions make them perennially popular in times of crisis.

Zhang, Xiaohan and Chao Wang, ‘Prevention and Control of COVID-19 Pandemic on International Cruise Ships: The Legal Controversies’ (2021) 9(3) Healthcare 281
Abstract: During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, a number of international cruise ships were infected, thereby resulting in serious public health and human rights problems. Multiple difficulties were encountered in the prevention and control of the coronavirus disease onboard ships, while rule-based international cooperation in this regard appeared inefficient and ineffective. By applying interdisciplinary methodologies, including empirical research of law, policy science, and health studies, this research reviewed the legal difficulties in the prevention and control of COVID-19 on international cruise ships and sought solutions from a policy-making and strategic perspective. We found that, apart from the inherent nature of cruise ships such as crowded semi-enclosed areas, shared sanitary facilities and limited medical resources, there are also nonnegligible legal reasons affecting the effectiveness of containment measures on board. In particular, there is ambiguity and even inconsistency of relevant international norms and domestic regulations, and some of the key rules are neither mandatory nor enforceable. We conclude by suggesting that rule-based international cooperation on this issue must be strengthened with respect to information sharing and management, a more effective supervisory mechanism, clarification of key rules over jurisdiction and distributions of obligations among the port states, flag states, nationality states, and cruise ship companies.

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