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Tax Law Committee

The Tax Law Committee makes submissions on proposed changes to tax law. The Committee maintains an ongoing dialogue with Inland Revenue, making submissions on Issues Papers, Public Rulings, Interpretation Statements, Questions We’ve Been Asked and other projects on which the Inland Revenue seek feedback.

About Us

The Tax Law Committee was created in 1988 to advise the Law Society on matters relating to taxation law reform and to establish an open line of communication and consultation with the Inland Revenue (IRD). Since its inception the committee has built a strong working relationship with the IRD and continues to be proactive in tax law reform.

Our People

Neil Russ is the convenor of the Tax Law Committee. Neil specialises in corporate and international tax issues, as well as structured transactions. In addition to his tax expertise Neil has a multi-jurisdictional background in banking and capital markets transactions. He has been a member of the Tax Law Committee since 2003, and was appointed convenor in 2013.

The members of the committee are highly experienced tax practitioners:

  • Geoffrey Clews
  • Barney Cumberland
  • Pam Davidson
  • Katherine Ewer
  • Kirsty Keating
  • Mike Lennard
  • Graeme Olding
  • Andrew Ryan
  • Stephen Tomlinson
  • Fred Ward

NZLS contact: Emily Sutton, Law Reform Adviser
DX SP20202 or PO Box 5041, Wellington 6145

Recent Work

The Tax Law Committee continues to be exceptionally busy. In the past 18 months the committee has made comprehensive submissions on three tax bills – the Taxation (Residential Land Withholding Tax, GST on Online Services, and Student Loans) Bill, Taxation (Annual Rates for 2016–17, Closely Held Companies, and Remedial Matters) Bill, and Taxation (Business Tax, Exchange of Information, and Remedial Matters) Bill – as well as submissions on a legislative amendment giving IRD transitional powers to override the Tax Administration Act during implementation of the Business Transformation programme.

The committee also made numerous submissions on reforms aimed at detection and prevention of tax evasion, including:

  • the G20/OECD global standard for Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI),
  • the Government Inquiry into Foreign Trust Disclosure Rules,
  • AEOI – excluded entities,
  • AEOI draft Guidance,
  • Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) – Transfer pricing and permanent establishment avoidance,
  • BEPS – Strengthening our interest limitation rules, and
  • Addressing hybrid mismatch arrangements.

In addition, the committee also made more than 25 submissions to the IRD on a diverse range of tax issues, including several submissions on tax relating to land acquired for disposal. There were also submissions on tax simplification (Towards a New Tax Administration Act, Better Administration of GST and PAYE, and Better Business Tax), and the committee contributed to the Law Society’s response to consultation on AML/CFT Phase 2 reform options.

Get Involved

Appointments are made to this committee biennially. If you have a passion for law reform, skills, interest and expertise in tax law and the time and energy to commit, then get involved.

Membership of this committee allows you to play an important role in tax reform and is an excellent basis for professional development as well as collegiality and networking. Additionally, substantive contribution to NZLS law reform may count towards your Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

Applications for the 2017 appointment round have closed. The next appointment round will be in mid-2019.

Last updated on the 28th January 2019