The tax concentration — one of six concentrations at Quinnipiac University School of Law — offers students an opportunity to learn tax law through exposure to both theory and practice. The concentration includes an extensive complement of tax-related courses and practical experiences to prepare you for a career in a law firm, government, accounting firm or business entity. At the beginning, you will study the structure of the current income tax system while developing your skills for reading statutes, regulations, case law, and legislative history, and applying them to tax planning and tax controversies. You will also consider the importance of tax policy and ethics.
As you progress, you will study the tax aspects of advanced business transactions in tax and related courses. You may also combine this concentration with others, for example, intellectual property or family law. You may also participate in the Quinnipiac University Tax Clinic, the oldest continuously operating tax clinic in the country, offering students hands-on experience in helping clients resolve tax issues. Or, you may choose a tax externship in a government agency or corporate setting.
Many students also participate in the law school's very active Tax Law Society and its strong Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, through which law students provide a valuable service to community residents who need assistance with their tax forms.
Requirements + Courses
In order to qualify for the Tax Concentration, a student must take:
- Federal Income Tax
- Business Organizations*
- Trusts and Estates or Real Estate Transactions
- Advanced Individual Income Tax
- Taxation of Business Enterprises
- Tax Research
Note that some of these courses will satisfy the "core course" requirement.
*The concentration director may approve substitution of Business Planning for Business Organizations.
A student must also complete the Tax Clinic or an externship of at least three credits (not including the seminar portion of either course). The director of the concentration may waive IRC as a requirement for the Tax Clinic. If a student does choose to enroll in IRC, credits for it will not count toward the clinical requirement.
The concentration director may waive the clinical requirement if the student has substantial tax law work experience. If the director waives the clinical requirement, the student must earn an additional five credits from the list of elective courses in order to qualify for the concentration.
A student must also complete at least eight credits from the following list of tax-related courses (not all of these are offered every year):
- Accounting for Lawyers
- Advanced Business Planning
- Advanced Corporate Tax
- Advanced Family Law
- Analytical Methods
- Business Planning**
- Corporate Finance
- Employee Benefits
- Estate and Financial Planning
- Family Law
- Gift and Estate Tax
- International Business Transactions
- International Tax
- Law and Economics
- Mergers and Acquisitions
- Non-Profit Organizations
- Real Estate Transactions***
- State and Local Tax
- Tax Policy
- Tax Procedure
- Trusts and Estates
**A student may not count Business Planning in the eight-credit requirement if he or she has used that course as a substitute for Business Organizations.
***A student may not count Real Estate Transactions toward the eight-credit requirement if he or she has used that course as a substitute for Trusts and Estates.
A student must also satisfy a writing requirement through either Tax Research or another course (with the approval of the Director), in which a student must write a substantial paper, or a series of shorter writings that require rewrites, if necessary. The Concentration Director will approve a substitute for Tax Research provided that the research and writing together comprise a substantial amount of written work on a topic or topics related to taxation.
(If a student writes a substantial paper in a seminar, the student may, with the approval of the Concentration Director, use that paper to satisfy both the Concentration Writing Requirement and the law school Advanced Writing Requirement, provided that the student meets the guidelines for the Advanced Writing Requirement as set forth in the academic catalog.) The topic or topics for the written work used to satisfy the Concentration Writing Requirement must be approved by the Concentration Director. A paper written for a journal may qualify, if the topic is approved by the Concentration Director.
Students who achieve a GPA of 3.2 or better in the coursework used for the concentration will receive the certificate for the concentration with honors. A student may designate any course or paper as not counting towards the concentration, so long as it is not specifically required for the concentration, and the student meets the concentration requirements with another course or paper.
Waiver of Requirements
The concentration director and the associate dean for academic affairs may waive any requirements for the concentration (other than the GPA requirement), if they both agree to do so.