quarta-feira, maio 14, 2008

Study of ECJ case law of direct taxation published

On 2 April 2008, a study on ‘The Impact of the Rulings of the European Court of Justice in the Area of Direct Taxation’ was published, as requested by the European Parliament's Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs. This study aims at describing the impact of the rulings of the ECJ on the Members States’ direct tax systems, containing materials available until December 2007.
The study is divided into four chapters. The first chapter contains preliminary remarks as to the legal context in which the ECJ decides on its cases, the basic elements of the income tax systems of the Member States, the EC Treaty provisions and secondary legislation relevant for direct taxation, and the methods of reasoning used by the ECJ. The second chapter contains the analysis of the ECJ case law in the area of direct taxation, divided for didactical into three main categories: (i) taxation of individuals, (ii) taxation of companies, and (iii) taxation of company shareholders, with emphasis on the latter two. This chapter also includes, for each type of case, an attempt to describe the major trends in the implementation of the ECJ case law by Member States, with particular focus on Member States whose legislation has been directly assessed by ECJ’s decisions as to their compatibility with EC law. The third chapter draws up provisional conclusions on the manner in which the development of the ECJ case law influences the direct tax systems of the Member States. In a fourth chapter, the limits of the so-called “negative integration” through the ECJ case law are discussed and suggestions are also made as to room for further European action, notably the adoption of EC legislative acts in direct tax matters. (...)

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