New Zealand Law Society - Tax Law Committee

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 seeks feedback.

About Us

The Tax Law Committee was created in 1988 to advise the Law Society on matters relating to tax law reform and to establish an open line of communication and consultation with Inland Revenue. Since its inception the committee has built a strong working relationship with IR 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 current members of the committee are highly experienced tax practitioners:

  • Fred Ward
  • Geoffrey Clews
  • Barney Cumberland
  • Mike Lennard
  • Graeme Olding
  • Stephen Tomlinson
  • Katherine Ewer
  • Andrew Ryan
  • Pam Davidson
  • Michael Littlewood
  • David Johnston
  • Helen Johnson

Recent Work

The Tax Law Committee continues to be exceptionally active. In the past 18 months the committee has made a number of comprehensive submissions on various tax bills – the Taxation (Neutralising Base Erosion and Profit Shifting) Bill, the Taxation (Annual Rates for 2018–19, Modernising Tax Administration, and Remedial Matters) Bill, and the Taxation (Annual Rates for 2019–20, GST Offshore Supplier Registration, and Remedial Matters) Bill – as well as further submissions to Inland Revenue and the Finance and Expenditure select committee on proposed transitional ‘Henry VIII’ override powers in relation to Inland Revenue statutes.

The committee has also made numerous submissions on New Zealand’s implementation of international rules relating to tax evasion (CRS (Common Reporting Standard), FATF (Financial Action Task Force) and BEPS (Base Erosion & Profit Shifting)).

The TLC has made submissions on a wide range of other tax reform proposals, including:

  • on the bright-line test main home exclusion relating to sale of lifestyle blocks and sale of subdivided sections;
  • the tax treatment of cryptocurrency;
  • the Tax Working Group recommendations on a potential capital gains tax and other issues; and
  • a proposed extension of the IR-Police information-sharing agreement to include SFO and Customs.

Get Involved

Appointments are made to this committee biennially. Membership of this committee allows you to play an important role in law reform and is an excellent basis for professional development as well as collegiality and networking.

Applications will be called for in mid-2021, for the next 2-year term starting September 2021.

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