Legal Remedies in European Tax Law - Review
Legal Remedies in European Tax Law, by Pascale Pistone
Review author: Christiana HJI Panayi
Reprinted from British Tax Review, Issue 3, 2011
Sweet & Maxwell, 100 Avenue Road, Swiss Cottage, London NW3 3PF. (Law Publishers)
preliminary rulings. The reports concentrate on the obstacles faced by taxpayers at various levels; namely when the issue first arises in national courts, when it is referred to the CJ and whether the Court’s decision is implemented back in the national system. Here, there are some overlaps with the previous two books published by GREIT and some themes are revisited in the context of legal remedies.2
Commission’s infringement actions for further integration is considered and a number of examples given. The limitations of this approach and its relationship with the preliminary rulings procedure are also analysed. Chapter 11 contains a very interesting suggestion for the establishment of the office of a European Tax Ombudsman. There is a brief comparative analysis of the implementation of the concept of the Ombudsman in various jurisdictions. The usefulness of an Ombudsman in the field of European tax law is considered.
the important case law is analysed and the crucial criterion of selectivity in business tax matters is reassessed. The powers of national courts and their ability to protect affected individuals are also addressed. Furthermore, chapter 15 gives an overview of the issue of locus standi of third parties in non-tax related State aid cases and how this affects competitors or beneficiaries. Chapter 17 picks up on some of these themes and considers the legal protection of recipients of fiscal State aids. State aid in the field of direct taxation has become increasingly important in the last few years and more detailed contributions in this part of the book would have been welcome. Arguably, this can be the subject of another book altogether.
and procedural issues pertaining to legal remedies. Part Five focuses on liability for damages. There is a general overview of the principles that govern legal remedies in European tax law and a good discussion on the conditions of equivalence and effectiveness in this context. Actions for compensation, consequential damages, restitutionary remedies, periods of limitation and national tax penalties are some of the themes examined in this Part. These are very topical issues given the number of European tax cases going through the English courts now.
Seven examines forum shopping as a result of differences in the rules relating to appeals under the various statutes of limitation. The differences between actions for damages before civil courts and actions for appealing a tax audit in tax courts are also considered.
Part Eight provides an overview of the legal remedies that taxpayers may use for the purpose of obtaining an effective protection in the presence of non-appealable acts or decisions infringing European law. This Part contains a number of chapters focusing on the application of the relevant principles of the European Convention on Human Rights to tax matters and their inter-relationship with European law. With the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, which incorporates a Charter of Fundamental Rights, the importance of the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights is likely to be elevated.
* Senior Lecturer in Tax Law, Queen Mary University of London, Centre for Commercial Law Studies and researcher at the Institute for Fiscal Studies.
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 BTR, No.3 © 2011 Thomson Reuters (Professional) UK Limited and Contributors
1 P. Pistone (ed.), Legal Remedies in European Tax Law (Amsterdam: IBFD, 2010), 7.